Unit Overview

Youth use the Engineering Design Process to design devices for keeping track of time.

  • Grades 6–8
  • Setting: Out of school
  • 8 activities
  • 50–60 Minutes per activity

Standards alignment

We’ve developed each EiE unit with careful attention to educational standards in both science and technology/engineering. View Standards Alignments.

Unit Map

Youth are introduced to engineering as they work in teams to engineer a tower to support a model clock.
Youth are introduced to a definition of technology and consider how technologies are improved over time.
Youth explore their own perceptions of time.
Youth engineer a timer by exploring the natural rhythms of falling dominoes.
Youth explore different types of hourglasses and engineer their own 1-minute hourglass.
Youth engineer a water timer that measures out an amount of time that is personally relevant to them.
Youth improve their water timers. They are also challenged to add a display or signal to their timers.
Youth share the water timers they engineered and how they used the Engineering Design Process.


Special Report Video

Visit a clock factory to see how engineers are creating timekeeping technologies that are designed to be visible and accurate. (9:30)

What's Included?

  • Educator Guide (PDF)
  • Engineering Journal (PDF)
  • Special Report Video (YouTube)
  • Print Materials (PDF)