YOUNGSTERS from across Bracknell and Wokingham have impressed engineering and design experts during a series of educational challenges.

The annual 3M Young Innovators Challenge aims to inspire the next generation of original thinkers through four creative challenges.

Each of the tasks aligns with a different area of the STEM curriculum, which includes science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

A total of 52 teams from across 17 primary and secondary schools presented their projects at 3M’s UK head office in Bracknell in front of a panel of judges.

Ajay, a member of the judging panel, said: “I was really impressed by how much time the pupils had taken over their entries and the depth of research into famous monuments that they had cleverly translated into their models.

“The presentations were all confident and enthusiastic and all the pupils were a credit to their schools.”

The first category to be judged was the Mighty Monument Challenge, where students designed and built a lightweight freestanding structure, which has to support a load of up to 5kg.

The items produced were also judged on their design, which included structures inspired by Windsor Castle, the Tokyo Tower, the Shard, Big Ben and the Eiffel Tower, but also their presentations.

Other challenges included a marble run and constructing a sensory toy or product to make an everyday task easier for a young person with sight loss.

One of the judges, John believes that some of the designs are good enough to use.

He added: “The teams produced some amazing ideas, showing imagination and considerable innovation. Several of the concepts could be used to great benefit in the real world.”

The final task was designing and building a system to transport the greatest possible weight of cherry tomatoes.

Daniel, a judge on the panel, said: “We were presented with a number of different loading and transportation concepts, including a pully system, a slide and a funnel, and all had their merits. All of the systems worked when we put them to the test, and we had a tough job coming up with an overall winner.”

The winners of all four categories will be announced at a presentation ceremony at the 3M Centre on June 6.