The Stewart/Lamar Catapult Challenge

The Stewart Lamar Catapult Challenge


I don’t remember exactly when the first conversation happened, but somewhere through chatting on Twitter and the interwebs, Colleen Graves and I decided that it would be awesome to connect our Maker kids.  I have an afterschool group that meets on Mondays at the same time as her group, even though we’re in different time zones.  I had some technical difficulties the first time we tried to connect, and ended up Skyping over my phone.    It was more informal, students sharing various projects we were working on.  After that first meet-up, we decided to up our students’ game by giving them a joint design challenge, The Catapult Challenge!


Even though it started out as the Catapult Challenge, it quickly became the “make-something-that-flings-something-across-the-room-without-poking-someone’s-eye-out” challenge for my kids.  There were crossbows, ballistas and trebuchets (which are NOT catapults, my students were quick to explain to me).  We had some regular old catapults too of course.  As we were sharing our projects on Vine, Twitter and Instagram, Colleen was sharing projects from her students as well.

Google Hangout

At the end of the challenge, we met up in a Google Hangout and shared our projects.  Colleen’s students had made some amazing giant catapults capable of flinging multiple ketchup packets at once.  My kids proudly showed off their creations and were ecstatic that they worked (the trebuchet was having some issues).

We’re in the midst of our next challenge now, the MaKeyMaKey challenge!  More on that later, but be sure that you’re following me on Instagram to get the latest updates.


Diana Rendina, MLIS, is the media specialist at Tampa Preparatory School, an independent 6-12 in Tampa, FL. Previously, she was the media specialist at Stewart Middle Magnet School for seven years, where she founded their library makerspace. She is the creator of the blog & is also a monthly contributor to AASL Knowledge Quest. Diana is the winner of the 2016 ISTE Outstanding Young Educator Award, the 2015 ISTE Librarians Network Secondary Award, the 2015 AASL Frances Henne Award & the 2015 SLJ Build Something Bold Award. She is an international speaker on the Maker Movement and has presented at conferences including AASL, FETC & ISTE. Diana co-authored Challenge-Based Learning in the School Library Makerspace with Colleen and Aaron Graves and is also the author Reimagining Library Spaces: Transform Your Space on Any Budget.


  1. […] makers at Stewart MS, an amazing collaborative journey began. (Read Diana’s post about our Catapult Challenge at Renovated Learning. Her students ROCKED making “things that fling stuff!”) The […]

  2. […] than the sheer satisfaction of being challenged to “make something that flings something.” See Diana’s blog for even more info on the catapult […]

  3. […] projects using recyclables e.g. , catapults , paper plane […]

  4. […] you’ve been following Renovated Learning for awhile, you might remember the Catapult Challenge my Stewart Makers Club did last year with Colleen Graves’ students at Lamar Middle School. […]

  5. […] The Stewart/Lamar Catapult Challenge […]

  6. […] as collaborative design challenges.  Some of our challenges included our Cardboard challenge, Catapult challenge and MaKeyMaKey challenge (last two done in collaboration with Colleen Graves and her […]

  7. Ahh! I was just thinking I should find a class, challenge them to a catapult challenge, and then blog about it…3 minutes later looking for something else I end up finding your post 🙂

Comments are closed.