Build a Rube Goldberg Machine With Your Kids for This Contest

Build a Rube Goldberg Machine With Your Kids for This Contest
Photo: Alex Huang / Flash Domino

Why perform simple, everyday tasks when you can make a complicated contraption to help you perform them? That’s the idea behind the annual contest hosted by Rube Goldberg, Inc., in honour of cartoonist Rube Goldberg whose cartoons often depicted devices that performed everyday tasks in convoluted ways. For this year’s contest, students are being challenged to create a device that will ultimately shake and pour a box of NERDS.

Registration is now open for the 2021 Rube Goldberg Machine Contest, and Nerds will sponsor the first 100 teams — up to 1,400 students/family groups — with free registration. This contest announcement video features a contraption that may provide you with inspiration to create your own:

Each contraption should include up to 75 “steps” or “transfers of energy,” and the final step should have the machine shaking and pouring a box of Nerds.

There are four divisions students can enter: ages 8-11 (apprentice), ages 11-14 (division 1), ages 14-18 (division 2), and family (all ages). Teams can have at minimum three members, but no more than 14, plus a team leader who must be 18 years of age or older — this person registers the team and will receive all the information needed to get started.

The contest deadline is March 3, 2021 and winners will be announced in April. You can read the Introduction Rule Book and FAQ for more information and register here.

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