Mars Colony: Engineering Expedition
iBlock Objective:

It is the not-too-distant future and humankind is getting ready to take the next great step in space exploration: a colony on Mars! Intrepid individuals with skills in various STEAM areas are called to assist in planning and building the future colony, and the most daring of them will live there as the very first Martians! In this iBlock, students will research space exploration, Mars, and survival essentials before planning for a historic trip to populate a new planet. Students will need to plan and build solutions for the essentials — habitat, transportation, communication, and more. Together, we can bring humanity to the next era of its development.

  • Grade Band: 6-8
  • Primary Focus: Engineering, Social Studies
  • Secondary Focus: Communication, Math
  • Additional Foci: Advanced Literacy, Transferable Skills, Social-Emotional Learning
  • Possible Suggested Technologies: Sphero RVR, littleBits, Sparkfun, SAM Labs
  • Related Industry Sectors: Scientific Research & Engineering; Information & Communication Technology; Transportation


An iBlock matches skills to standards (like Common Core or NGSS).

Here is a sample content standard for this iBlock:

Define the criteria and constraints of a design problem with sufficient precision to ensure a successful solution, taking into account relevant scientific principles and potential impacts on people and the natural environment that may limit possible solutions. (MS-ETS1-1)