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Hurricane Challenge – “A Place for a Pig”

Who’s Afraid Of The Big Bad Wolf – “A Place for a Pig”

Design Brief

The question: 

How can we construct a Place for a Pig that will keep the pig safe from the big bad wolf? 

The problem:  

Design and build a model of a house from the given materials that will continue to stand when exposed to three tests.

Design constraints:

  • You may choose any THREE types of available building materials.
  • The pig must be able to get inside (for shelter)
  • It must stay together when the hairdryer or fan (the wolf huffing and puffing) blows on it (it can move, but it can’t fall apart).
  • It must support 100g of weight on the top (the weight of the wolf on the roof).

Design Procedure:

Follow the steps of the Engineering Design Process

  • Ask— How can we construct a Place for a Pig that will keep the pig safe from the wolf?
  • Imagine—Talk to your team about possible designs.
  • Plan—Decide what materials, from the materials provided, will you use to create your solution.
  • Create—Build your solution according to your team’s plan. Make alterations as needed.
  • Improve—Based on the results of your testing, determine how your solution can be made better.


  • 5 craft sticks
  • 5 straws
  • 5 pipe cleaners
  • 1 marble sized ball of modeling clay
  • 5 index cards
  • 5 paper clips
  • 5” tape
  • 1 pair of scissors
  • 1 mini-figure

If possible, have a box fan, table fan or hairdryer available for testing.

Test Procedure:

  • Take your house to the testing station.
  • Place your house at the testing line for testing on a flat surface.
  • Check whether or not the mini-figure can fit inside.
  • If using a fan or hairdryer, set the house about 36 in away and turn it on.  Try at again at 24 in and 18 in.
    • Alternatively, blow on the house three times for as long and hard as you can or use a magazine, book or other flat paper to act as a fan.
  • Assess whether the house moves at all, whether the roof remains intact and whether the walls remain standing.
  • Rebuild as many times as you like to improve your house.
    • Use what you learn for each test to build a better house.
Wind Test Station
Waiting For Results

Project Description:     Erin Denniston, M.Ed 
Photography:           Donald KALLGREN