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Rube Goldberg

Rube Goldberg (1883-1970) was a Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoonist who was best known for the wacky inventions that appeared in his comics. His cartoons appeared in newspapers for more than 50 years.

A RG is an overly complex contraption that does a simple task. The RG contraption uses everyday items in a series of chain-reaction steps that accomplish a task.  Rube Goldberg allows youth to use physics, engineering, humor, and storytelling. Teams are encouraged to create a theme for their RG and incorporate their theme in the contraption.

The goal of Rube Goldberg is to encourage critical thinking, creativity, innovation, and problem solving in a non-traditional learning even and to have FUN in the process. Youth who have completed third through twelfth grades can compete in the Rube Goldberg Challenge. Youth will use their STEM knowledge and skills to solve problems, make a plan, and design a solution.

Teams that build a RG and complete the record keeping journal and a poster summarizing their work can compete or display their work at their county fair. Any team can participate in the state fair contest; teams do not have to win a county contest to enter the 2019 state fair challenge.

See the rule book below for a more detailed overview of the contest and rules.

Rube Goldberg Rule Book

Rube Goldberg Volunteer Role Description


Student Focused. Land Grant. Research University.

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Center for 4-H Youth Development
Phone: +1 (701) 231-7251
Campus address: FLC 219
Physical/delivery address: 1400 Centennial Blvd, Fargo, ND 58102
Mailing address: NDSU Dept. 7280 / PO Box 6050 / Fargo, ND 58108-6050
Page manager: 4-H

Last Updated: Thursday, June 20, 2019 8:55:18 AM
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