Rube Goldberg event tests creative thinking

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DECATUR, Ill. (WAND) – Students put their knowledge of machines to the test in a fun event.

The 19th annual Rube Goldberg Competition happened Saturday at MacArthur High School. Students in Macon County worked to get creative in making Rube Goldberg contraptions.

Machines that follow the Rube Goldberg style are all about using as many steps as possible to accomplish a simple task. They might include things like popping a balloon, making dominoes fall or moving a marble down a ramp as part of a process where one action triggers another.

Rexlyn Nicole, who works as national coordinator for an organization called Engineer in the Classroom, says the enthusiasm from students makes everything worthwhile.

“They don’t realize they’re learning stuff,” she said. “They think this has all been fun and they’ve learned about simple machines, how to use math, how to use their science and (they’ve) applied it into a project. So it’s hands-on (and) it’s not just memory of something.”

The top three Rube Goldberg creations go to a regional competition on the U of I campus. 

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