STEM Activity: Create Your Own Super Stadium
The Big Game is right around the corner! Whether you enjoy the football, the halftime show or maybe just the game day food, it’s fun to get together on this day with family and friends.
Kick off your inspiration before The Big Game by creating your very own football stadium! You can even incorporate a glowing line like the Virtual Yellow 1st & Ten® line invented by National Inventors Hall of Fame® Inductee Stan Honey and used for televised football games everywhere.
- Cardboard or cardboard box
- Clay or other modeling material (optional)
- Craft sticks (optional)
- Paper football
- Recyclable materials
- Straws (optional)
- Start making your football stadium using cardboard as your base.
- Alternatively, you can tape off an area of a table.
- If building walls for your stadium using cardboard, recyclables or other materials, explore how you want these walls to stick together (e.g., using toothpicks, tape, clay, etc.).
- Incorporate the following features on the inside of your stadium:
- Create a goal post for each end of the field by using craft sticks or straws to make an “H” shape and sticking them together with tape or clay.
- Make obstacles that the paper football must maneuver around or over. For example, you could use pieces of clay on the field to represent football players.
- Work together with your family members to research other features that make up a football field, like yard numbers and lines.
- Next, using scissors, cut a slit in a notecard.
- Tape the notecard to the front of a flashlight with the slit over the light.
- Darken the room by turning off the lights and closing the blinds or curtains.
- Turn your flashlight on in the darkened room and aim it at the ground.
- Does it create a line on the ground?
- If not, experiment with cutting a wider slit in the notecard to create a more obvious line.
- The physical model that you just created represents a first-and-10 line!
- Grab your paper football and see if you can score by tossing or flicking it with your fingers toward one of the goal posts. Use the first-and-10 line you created with your flashlight as you play.
What Are We Discovering?
Hall of Famer Stan Honey and his team changed the world of sports with the invention of the Virtual Yellow 1st & Ten line. This yellow line can be displayed on any televised football game to help fans at home see how many yards their team needs to advance the football to gain a first down.
While it may look like a simple yellow line, it required a lot of computer programming, problem solving and engineering to determine how to place this line in the correct spot and have it appear as a natural part of the field, rather than an obvious graphical insertion. Honey also has created many other inventions that have impacted different areas of sports. He holds 31 patents in television graphics and navigation technology.
Share Your Stadium With Us!
How did your mini football stadium turn out? We’d love to see it! Share photos with us on Facebook and Twitter, then visit our blog for more fun STEM activities.