Monday 13 July 2015

Building a Bridge - Da Vinci Style

When I was in Milan I visited an exhibition about Leonardo da Vinci and it really got me inspired... as I could see so many of my preschoolers interests woven into a project about his thinking, creations, drawings etc etc etc...

Bridge building was also one of the contruction ideas that I tested when I was there - and I knew exactly which children in my group this would inspire...

There was a book you could buy at the exhibition about this, but I felt it was just too pricey - and I have been looking for the same book elsewhere and not found it, but I have found other interesting books.

Da Vinci designed a bridge (1485-87 sometime) that could be constructed without nails or adhesive - a self-supporting bridge - and this can be replicated in the classroom if you are interested...

Check out the images below and you will see... and, yes, this is all I am going to give you, as it is the same information that I will give my preschoolers...

 You can see how the sticks weave in and out to offer stability - under, over, under over - the middle row doing the opposite to the two outer rows... a bit like weaving in a way.


As you see once the bridge frame is constructed you can then build a pathway over it - I think this image makes it easier for children (and me) to make that leap from model to actual bridge).

The top bridge is made with long flat wooden blocks, the following image might make it more clear as to what sort of blocks are used.

All images come from google searches and Amazon (which sold a da Vinci bridge kit for a sum of money that I felt was too much for my budget, and that we could improvise with blocks that we already have - possibly kapla, but we also have a some others that are longer and thinnner that are just bef´gging to be used in such a project).

Below is a film on how the brdige is constructed. If you want to find out more details about the bridge and other Da Vinci inventions then please check out Leonardo's Inventions


Here is the bridge I built at the Leonardo Da Vinci exhibition in Milan.

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