If your child has ever ridden in the subway or metro, or gone on a long road trip, they have probably traveled through a tunnel. Tunnels are located underground and sometimes even underwater. Some tunnels are dug just to help transportation vehicles, but other tunnels have laboratories, or are created to observe underwater animals at aquariums.
Tunnels are dug underground for various reasons. Thousands of years ago, people dug tunnels to take out minerals from the ground. Farmers also made tunnels for irrigation, and before we had toilets, people made sewage channels to dispose of waste.
In this science and engineering activity, challenge your child to design and build a tunnel of their own. During their planning process, ask them to decide on a purpose for their tunnel and how it will help make people’s lives easier. Encourage your budding engineer to imagine the location of their tunnel and how it can be helpful to people, as well as aesthetically pleasing. This creative activity is a great way to introduce children from first through fifth grade to the wide open world of engineering, design, and imagination.