Build a Gumdrop Tower

Have you ever wondered how engineers manage to build buildings so high, they seem to reach above the clouds? Learning about how to create stable and strong structures of that size takes lots of education and practice, but did you know you can set yourself down that path with just a handful of candies and toothpicks? With this activity, children can use their imaginations to test out different methods to build tall and strong towers, and see for themselves what properties and combinations work the best. Budding engineers – let’s get to work! 


What You Need: 

  • 20 gumdrops (or other chewy candy)
  • 20 toothpicks

What To Do: 

To build your structure, put a toothpick into a gumdrop. Then, put a second toothpick into a different side of that gumdrop. Attach another gumdrop to the other ends of your toothpicks. Continue in this way, building up and sideways, to see how tall you can go! Here are some different variations to try – see which is the tallest and strongest or make up your own! You’re limited only by your imagination and number of toothpicks and gumdrops: 

  • Use only 5 toothpicks and 10 gumdrops
  • Use all 20 toothpicks and 20 gumdrops  

Which combination was the tallest? Which was the strongest?   


Happy building, future engineers!


More Posts

How Do Airplanes Fly?

Wondering how do airplanes fly? Get the answer, plus facts on how heavy they can be, how fast and high they can go, and more!

The Science of Superheroes

What is a Superhero? Superheroes are the dazzling characters created from the wildest dreams of our imaginations. They can do things that regular humans can’t – like see with x-ray vision, sling spider webs from their wrists, fly through space,

Earth Day Activities banner

Earth Day Activities for Kids

Celebrate Earth Day If you’re looking for a way to celebrate our planet and show your support for protecting our amazing environment, Earth Day is the perfect occasion!  Earth Day Quick Facts Earth Day is a day to show our

Solar Eclipse Explained

What is a Solar Eclipse? Have you ever made a shadow puppet by putting your hand over a flashlight in the dark? You may be surprised to learn that what you see (a big shadow on your wall) is very