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Contact Info     Colorado 4-H STEM & K-12 programs provide opportunities for youth to learn, practice and apply knowledge and abilities to prepare them for success in careers and life.

Engineering Design Challenge   arrow

Plant a Seed And Water it

2021 Colorado State Fair 4-H Engineering Design Challenge

Adapted for Colorado with permission from

2020 EDC Downloads
2020 EDC Coach/volunteer Survey
2020 EDC Youth Survey 


Colorado 4-H State Office is proud to introduce its newest STEM challenge.   The Engineering Design Challenge is a STEM challenge offered through Colorado 4-H during 2020.  STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) is one of the largest developing fields in colleges and Universities across the state; majors included in biological sciences, computer science, mechanical engineering and design, and mathematics all fall under the STEM umbrella (click here for more information). Youth who engage in STEM experiential learning opportunities to find solutions to problems, or find answers to their inquiries are more likely to follow STEM career pathways as young adults.

Through their participation in the Colorado 4-H Engineering and Design Challenge, youth will not only gain skill-sets in mechanical engineering and design and enhance their ability to solve complex problems, but will also develop many of the life skills taught through 4-H Youth Development programming.  4-H Life skills learned through participation in this challenge include, but are not limited to, Thinking (decision making and critical thinking), Managing (Goal setting, resiliency), Relating (social skills, cooperation), Caring (Sharing, relationships), Giving (Leadership, Contributions to a group),  Working (Teamwork, self-motivation), Living (Stress management, personal safety), and Being (Self-esteem and responsibility).

Over the course of this challenge, youth will use their intuition and problem solving skills to solve a series of problems using every day household items. Youth will learn the Engineering Design Process, potential and mechanical energy, and many other STEM related topics. Not only will youth develop STEM skill sets throughout the challenge, but they will be given the opportunity to apply their skills and ingenuity to the design and development of a capstone project which will be a contraption consisting of multiple simple machines that work together in order to complete a prescribed task.

Objective of the challenge:

Youth will find their “SPARK” by engaging in STEM experiential learning activities intended to develop youth’s interest in STEM related concepts and career fields.

Participants of the Engineering Design Challenge will complete several hands-on lessons, each one building upon the next until the students put all the concepts together in a final engineering design project.

As a participant in this challenge, youth will develop skill-sets and understanding of:

  • Teamwork
  • How to solve complex problems using data.
  • The Engineering Design Process.
  • Energies types.
  • Relationships between the height and mass.
  • kinetic and potential energy.
  • Using a given set of data to solve a problem.
  • Presentation skills.
  • Advantages and disadvantages of Simple Machines.

The Engineering Design Challenge allows kids to meet new people, think critically, and do fun activities all while learning along the way. Much like real engineering, the objectives met during the challenge build upon themselves and require the participants to work with one another to achieve a common goal. In addition to interesting the participants,

please visit our website to register. If you are interested in being a volunteer, please click here and sign up with your local county agent.

Contact Information:
CSUE State 4-H Office

Engineering Design Challenge Superintendent:
TBD (Open to interested 4-H Agent(s))

A Special Thank You:
This program is made possible through a partnership between Colorado State University Extension 4-H, STEM K-12 and The University of Minnesota Extension 4-H, STEM K-12.