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7) Selecting materials

7) Selecting materials

A child taking a digital photograph of park surfacesExplore the qualities of different materials and their suitability for their intended purpose. When selecting the most appropriate materials to construct their equipment students should consider: Whether to use materials from renewable sources? Which materials are more resistant to extreme weather conditions and wear and tear? Can materials be coated to make them more weatherproof?

Cost of materials.

  • What damage might be caused and how it can be minimised or prevented?
  • What cleaning and maintenance might be needed?
  • Which components might require replacing through wear and tear?
  • How the equipment will be fixed into the ground?
  • How colour will be used? Will it be appropriate to use strong colour in the chosen area – especially if in a historic, scenic or ecological setting?
  • How to avoid designing equipment with parts that will collect rain water?

Students should be able to give reasons for their eventual choice of materials.