Make a boat that float

How to make a boat that floats and holds weight [school project idea]

Project-based learning is crucial to a child’s psychological development. Not only it helps them in developing skills but also prepares them to survive a knowledge-based highly technical society. Teaching models in the past used to focus on passive learning and reciting those facts out of context, but that model is not in line according to the needs of the 21st century. To survive contemporary times, not only one has to focus on his basic skills ( reading, writing, and math ) but also has to work on skills, which might not appear to be of great importance on the outside. Such skills include teamwork, problem-solving, research gathering, time management, information synthesizing, utilizing high-tech tools, etc. Project-based learning induces essential skills in your child, which may help him later on in his life. It lets your child demonstrate his or her capabilities while working on his own. Not only this but it also demonstrates the child’s ability to put his skills to the test, which he has learned over time. Not only this, but it also helps in developing the child’s ability to work with his or her peers, building teamwork and group skills. It also allows the teacher to learn more about the child as an individual, helps in the identification of the child’s weaker areas, and lets the teacher have multiple assessment opportunities.

Making a floating boat that can hold some weight is a stem-based activity, which may provide your child the opportunity to learn about the floating characteristics of a boat utilizing coins or pennies.

Follow the following steps to make a boat that floats and carries weight.

  • Start by making a raft. You can use different materials for this purpose. Since this activity intends to bring out the hidden creative mind of your kid, therefore it is necessary to Give your kids the freedom to experiment and create their boat. Also, during the process, ask them questions related to it such as why do they think this raft will be able to carry weight?
  • For this project, you may require Paper, lego, aluminum foil, food coloring, straw, glue stick, playdoh, coins, popsicle stick.
  • To make the boat, you need to build the base with lego. Afterward, you can use lego bricks to make borders and sides.
  • Once you are done with your raft, you can make a few more to test different structures.
  • You may decorate the raft and the boat any way you like. If you want to make the flag, you may simply use playdoh for this purpose.

How to make a floating boat with paper and foil:

  • To make this boat, you will require aluminum foil and paper.
  • Take a sheet of aluminum foil and start rolling it from the sides to form a raft.
  • Fold the paper accordingly to make a boat.


Now that we are done with making boats, we may need to start our observation, just so that we can have an idea about the weight carrying capacity of these boats. For this purpose, you should sort out the pennies into different categories such as nickels, dimes, and quarters.

  • Start with the lego boats. The lego boat equipped with the flagpole was unable to withstand much weight whereas, on the contrary, the lego boat without any flag pole was able to carry more weight, which leads us to the conclusion that boats must be strong but light, to carry more weight. Whereas the fancy lego boat won’t survive that much, given the fact that water may seep inside if the sides are open. Thus, we can conclude that boats with intact borders can withstand more weight
  • Boats made out of foil can withstand higher amounts of weight. Not only this, but they are also easier to make and carry no complexity. While doing experiments with a foil boat, you may also tell your kid about the properties of different materials such as plastic or aluminum foil. You should tell them that aluminum, being the lightest of all, still has the highest buoyancy.
  • Just like aluminum foil, boats made out of paper are also light in weight and can carry higher amounts of weight. But, there is one downside attached to it, that these paper boats cannot be reused just like lego and foil. This is because the water seeps into the paper over time, which makes it impossible to use


The importance of project-based learning cannot be stressed enough. Project-based learning challenges students to answer real problems in a meaningful way. Project-based learning also helps students to engage in inquiry and constructive criticism. Not only this, but project-based learning also increases your child’s cooperative learning skills, improves his leadership and team performance skills, alongside enhancing his critical thinking and decision management. This is because learning styles in children vary a lot. They come from different backgrounds, therefore the knowledge they possess is also different based on individual experiences. Not only this, project-based learning lets them showcase their vast set of capabilities, which otherwise would not have been possible. Project-based learning helps in addressing these differences and equips each student to use their areas of strength to overcome a problem with the help of a joint problem. Project-based learning also lets students take charge of their learning. Not only this, it helps students to learn how to solve their problems in a joint effort and encourages students to apply their creative thinking abilities to overcome any problem communally. Lastly, project-based learning helps students to manage projects and tasks more efficiently and encourages them to take ownership of their projects, and celebrate their accomplishments

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