Engineering an Indoor Vertical Planter


Problem Statement: Grade four students in an urban school recognized a space crunch in expanding the school garden. No more outdoor space was available for planting.

Design Goal: Create CAD models and 3D prototypes of indoor vertical plant stackers, and present designs to the school science specialist.


  • The plants on the stackers should receive sunlight
  • The plants should be watered easily
  • The stackers should be sturdy
  • The stackers should be mobile
  • The stackers need to stand inside the school building


  • Have limited time to design the system
  • Cannot exceed a certain fixed budget provided for materials for prototyping

What solution did the students design?

The students individually created CAD models of vertical plant stackers.

Students used tinker cad as the computational tool for designing their models.

Math & Science Content Connections

  1. Conditions for plant growth
  2. Watering needs of specific plants
  3. Photosynthesis
  4. Structures and stability
  5. Engineering design process