I provided models for a well done project and a project done with little or no effort. I made the models myself, they were NOT student models. This provided an opportunity for several mini-lessons.
I used a rubric provided by Shelley Breivogel in her packet Invention Convention. I change the rubric a bit to meet the needs of my students.
I noticed that the rubric really helped focus students and increased the expectation for the quality of the final product. Many students put much more effort in projects than usual. When I asked them why they all said, "because we wanted all threes on out projects" HHMMMM!!!
When our class studied transportation many students chose to research famous inventors. This experience was perfect background knowledge for our study of inventions that changed our lives.
I purchased these three packets from Teachers Pay Teachers. In groups students made timelines of important inventions and wrote about how they have changed our lives. They investigated the steps of creating a new invention and introducing and selling it to the public. Then it was time for them to create their own inventions.