Teacher Resources: Engineering & Design Challenges

Scientists use a wide range of technologies, tools, and techniques to study impact craters. Challenge your students to invent or create an original product or a scientific mission!

The following STEM-based design challenges are constructed to encourage creativity. Each challenge lists what is required for completion.

  • The format should be decided by the teacher to best suit the class. (Will they develop designs or actually construct them? Will the research proposals be written as papers or presented with visuals to the class?)
  • Assessment criteria will be based on the format and developed by the teacher.
  • The web links included in this module provide a beginning point for research - students should expand their research to other sources as well.
  • Note: the MESSENGER Mission to Mercury education section is a great resource for teachers!

Discovery Challenges


Educational Standards Met

National Science Education

  • Standard A: Science as Inquiry
  • Standard E: Science and Technology
  • Standard G: History and Nature of Science

2061 Benchmarks for Science Literacy

  • 1B/M1b Scientific investigations usually involve the collection of relevant data, the use of logical reasoning, and the application of imagination in devising hypotheses and explanations to make sense of the collected data.

National Educational Technology Standards

Standard 4 - Critical thinking, Problem Solving, and Decision Making

  • Students use critical thinking skills to plan and conduct research, manage projects, solve problems, and make informed decisions using appropriate digital tools