Creativity is key in Wacky Wonders program

Odin Howk and Aiden Altman work with Librarian Kathryn Tatnall to design a boat for the Billy Goats to cross the river.

NEW ULM — Kids developed a way to make a goat float as part of the Library’s Wacky Wonders program.

The Wacky Wonders program is a once-a-month after-school activity for children in 2nd through 5th Grade that focuses on art, crafts and STEM projects.

Each month the kids learn something new with Youth Service Librarian Kathryn Tatnall. Last month Tatnall and the students created a miniature volcano using a pumpkin. This month, the kids developed different methods of moving goats across a river. The project was based on the story of Billy Goats Gruff. Tatnall asked the kids to use their imaginations to find a method other than a bridge to get the goats across the river.

Several different ideas were formed including stealth technology to sneak past the troll. Other ideas included a crane or goat-launching mechanism.

In the end, 3rd Grade students Odin Howk and Aiden Altman settled on a boat design.

The goat boat floats.

The greatest challenge of designing a boat for three goats was making sure it did not capsize.

Howk and Altman both developed a square boat design that could float the goats.

Tatnall said the Wacky Wonders program originally began in January 2020 but was put on hiatus because of the pandemic. It was brought back this September. The idea of the program is to teach basic STEM skills.

Next month Wacky Wonders will be doing a technology-based program.

Aiden Altman attaches wooden rudder to his goat boat.


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