Mrs. Brown's Fourth Grade Blog

…our learning adventure

The Marshmallow Challenge


On Tuesday, our class participated in the marshmallow challenge. It was a great opportunity to watch how each team communicated, collaborated, and problem-solved to complete the task.

What is the marshmallow challenge? Each team is given the following materials: 20 spaghetti sticks, 1 yard of tape, 1 yard of string, and 1 marshmallow. The challenge: build the tallest freestanding structure you can in 18 minutes. The structure must have the marshmallow on top. This challenge has been conducted with numerous age groupings of adults and children and different types of professional groups. Interestingly, the group that performs this task the best….KINDERGARTNERS! To watch a TED Talk about it, check out the video below.



“It was strange because I was trying to tell my group that if you make our design taller, it would topple. This is explained by simple physics. The center of mass would be too high, which makes it unstable.”

“I think our group did well working together, but we could have divided up the work better. All in all, we did well.”

“No one listened to my idea. One student wasn’t collaborating. It was hard for me.”

“I thought that the marshmallow challenge was very hard. The hardest part was trying to hold the structure up because we couldn’t tape it down. I really like it even though it was hard.”

“I thought that this challenge was fun. I liked the teamwork involved because everyone had crazy ideas. It didn’t work, but it nearly did. I liked working with my teammates, and I’m glad they didn’t complain when our structure collapsed. I liked this challenge, and it was cool.”

“I think our group could do better if everybody was working on the same thing instead of different things. I also like the challenge because you have to be creative.”

“I think we did a great job. The thing that was missing was teamwork.”

“I think our group can be open to more creative ideas. Even though one member’s idea was a great idea, I still think a little creativity will make the group more fun. One person started giving up from the start. Another was very helpful because he just started encouraging the whole group to work together. When it was time to put our hands up, our structure was still standing. I hope we can do it again.”

“The marshmallow contest was tricky. There was a lot of working together. It was hard balancing the structure.”

“I think it was fun because it involved building, but I worked alone. Also, it’s hard when you’re timed. You don’t have many items.”

“I think that we should have been simpler. We thought too complex. We did well. We communicated.”

“I think it went well. Our team helped each other out. I know we didn’t win, but it was about fun.”

” I think our table worked well together, even though we didn’t win. They involved me and let me think of some ideas. I know why we didn’t win though. We were thinking too complicatedly. Overall, it was a fun challenge.”

“This project was very fun. I really enjoyed this project. It was hard. I think I worked well with my group.”

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