"I have no special talent. I am only passionately curious" - Albert Einstein

Cup Insulator Reflection

NOTE: Sorry, the pictures are not available, but hopefully, this description can give you a clear image of our design: A thick layer with 5 layers of foil, one layer of cut-ed rubber bands, one layer of bubble rapper, and a gigantic cloth-covered handle. It is also attached with a hanging small lid. The ‘jacket’ can be bulky for a mug, and it’s very stuffy.


In science, we designed a cup-insulator. The device is to keep the mug warm longer than the mug without the insulator. I was in a group with Erica and Connie, and we did some investigations that foil, rubber bands, cloth, and bubble-rappers are the materials that are likely to keep the mug warm for a while.

Our designing process was pretty good, we decided that we should have a “jacket” for the mug. We listed out the materials that we might use:

  • Cloth
  • Felt
  • Rubber bands
  • Bubble rappers
  • Foil
  • Velcro

After that, we started planning. Our shape is very basic, and one strategy is that we will keep on cutting the same shape and eventually tape or hot-glue it onto the original piece. Since foil is the most essential and most helpful thing to keep a hot item warm, we decided that the foil should be our origin of the shape.

My claim is that rapping the essential materials is better than rapping layers of materials. And this is also a lesson that we learned.

During the experiment, we learned that foil and felt is the most essential way to be a cup-insulator. According to our project, we made the layer too thick with unessential materials and led to the majority of difficulty rapping the jacket on the mug. This happened because we at first know that the more the better, so we rapped tons of bubble rappers, foil, and felt around the mug. But this is not scientific because we did not consider the function of each material.

Finally, we managed to change our original design a little bit and succeeded on the project test.

I’m proud of my team’s work because it eventually, and unexpectedly worked since our water temperature only dropped 13 degrees.

Something that maybe we should do differently is to get the mug a cap and maybe have the jacket a little thinner.

I think the hardest thing about this project is making a well-constructed cup insulator in a short amount of time and the material has to be successful. It’s very challenging because you would need to generate all kinds of ideas and combine others’ too.

Some limitations our group experienced is the material and time. Sometimes, the material that we wanted at school is not there, and we might be forgetful to bring materials from home. The second thing is time, where we only get three days, and we don’t get enough time to redesign and make our project better.

Overall, I am very happy with my team and my project outcome. If we can do this design again next time, I would probably think a little more.

My Cardboard Arcade Game

These are two pictures of my design work with my teammates, Sophia and Scarlet.

I think my biggest success was the whole design process. We fixed a redo-ed a lot of work, and eventually, the fourth-graders actually love our game. And they kept on trying it and trying it. There was one kid who tried five times and he’s still willing to try, even though the shooter is very hard to control and handle.

Secondly, one thing I’d like to change is the shooter. The shooter is very hard for especially fourth graders to handle with. Because our game has the biggest attention at first, but then fewer people came. We eventually had to rip off a lot of obstacles for the fourth graders so it will be easier for them to play with. So maybe next time, I really should consider more about the shooter part.

Overall, I think our arcade this sort of success. After all, a lot of people to our stand and played our game. A few people especially tried so hard to use the shooter. And I really appreciate their attempts. For improvements, I should’ve considered a little more about this part, but overall, our game is very good so far.

It’s nearly the end of the quarter and the next design class will be our final one. I am sad to leave the design lab for the rest of the year, but I’d like to give some special thanks to especially Mr Layman, Mr Gaby, and my teammates, Sophia and Scarlet. If they hadn’t taught me those useful tips and warnings, how would we ever learn these safety tips? #I LOVE DESIGN! #MR LAYMAN!


Yours truly,

Serena Huang 6-7





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