Water the Garden Project
Due Date: March 15th, 2016
We will put your creations in a special exhibit on Science Night at the end of March!
Challenge: How (and How Much) Do We Water our Foothill Gardens?
Step One: The Discovery Phase:
In the Discovery Phase, you try to understand the Challenge!
Some good things to do:
- Collect and write down all the thoughts you have about the challenge.
- Does it feel like too much to do? If so, can you find a smaller piece or make it simpler?
- Do you think you would like to work on this by yourself or with a team? (Don’t worry, you can change your mind later!) If you already have a team, you can share ideas with each other.
- Who is this design for? Can you think of any questions you should ask those people?
- Can you think of any experts for this challenge? Can you think of any questions you should ask the experts?
- How might you get some inspiration for this challenge? Are there books you can look at? What might be some good internet searches? (Remember to be safe on the internet!
- Build a question guide: Figure out things you would would like to know more about. What do you still need to learn?
How to Write Good Questions:
- Think of some very specific questions that people will be comfortable answering. For example, how do people deal with the challenge right now?
- Think of some very broad questions, ask about people’s hopes and fears. What is the best that could happen? What is the worst that can happen?
- Pay attention to the answers you get from your first round. Use the answers to ask some ‘what if’ questions.
Some facts about our Foothill Garden to get you started:
- Our Foothill Garden is split between two places: one near the MakerSpace, and one just by the Kindergarten rooms.
- Rain, temperature, and wind all affect the water needs of our garden.
- Different plants need different amounts of water.
- We have one community garden day a month, and we have had 5-20 people show up to each one.
- Donnette Teeple is the primary person responsible for taking care of our garden right now.
Some interesting projects that you might get inspiration from:
- How much water do vegetables need? https://bonnieplants.com/library/how-much-water-do-vegetables-need/
- When to water: http://www.gardeners.com/how-to/when-to-water/8108.html?SC=XNET9465
- Watering in a drought: https://lbre.stanford.edu/sites/all/lbre-shared/files/docs_public/CCWD_DroughtSurvivalGuide_Lawns.pdf
- A simple weather station example: http://oceanservice.noaa.gov/education/for_fun/BuildyourownWeatherStation.pdf
- A sophisticated weather station example: http://www.instructables.com/id/Complete-DIY-Raspberry-Pi-Weather-Station-with-Sof/
- Some self-watering systems: https://green.thefuntimesguide.com/self_watering_gardens/
- A NASA-sponsored project for measuring soil moisture: http://scistarter.com/blog/2015/07/nasa-and-scistarter-citizen-scientists-nationwide-research-soil-moisture-conditions-water-availability/#sthash.C1EtmpPD.dpbs
On our October FabLab Night, we’ll post Step Two: Brainstorming and Building Teams — at the end of that session, we’ll ask participants to tell us what materials they’d like to have for the next step — prototyping!