Everyday Examples in Engineering

Lesson Plans

This section contains lesson plans and solutions, most of which have been prepared using the principle of the 5Es: Engage, Explore, Explain, Elaborate and Evaluate (1).  

Dynamics: Set of 9 ENGAGE Lesson Plans


This section provides examples of demonstrations —and includes directions for building and using the demonstrations. 

Video demonstrations of Everyday Examples

Ideas for Lesson Plans

This section lists ideas that could be used to illustrate engineering concepts. Consider these ideas as you create your own lesson plans.

Particle Kinematics

Particle Kinetics

Rigid Body Kinematics

  • Kinematics and Dynamics of Rigid Bodies - Bicycle*
  • Rotational Motion - Dancing*
  • Uniform Circular Motion - Ice Skating*

Rigid Body Kinetics

  • Gears - Bicycle, LEGO Robot Model*
  • Combined Translation and Rotation - Cars in a Skid*
  • Angular Velocity - Ice Skating (Turns)*
  • Motion (Analytical Description) - Skiing*
  • Moment Curvature Relations - Traffic Signs (Light Signals)*
  • Forces and Torques - Unscrewing Bottles*


  • Single Degree-of-Freedom Vibration - Car Hitting a Bump*
  • Transient Response - Drums*
  • Transducers - MP3 Player Speakers*
  • Harmonically Excited Systems - Tacoma Narrows Bridge Failure*
  • Transverse String Vibrations, Continuous Systems - Violins*

*Source:  Ilene Busch-Vishniac, Tom Kibler, Patricia B. Campbell, Eann Patterson, Darrell Guillaume, Jeffrey Jarosz, Constantine Chassapis, Ashley Emery, Glenn Ellis. Horace Whitworth, Susan Metz, Suzanne Brainard & Pradosh Ray

(1) Atkin, J.M. and Karplus, R. (1962). Discovery or Invention? Science Teacher, 29(5):45.