Teach Your Class to Fly
Did you know that next year is the centennial of flight? On December
17, 1903, two brothers created the first powered flying machine?
To celebrate this amazing achievement, help your students to fly!
You can do this in a number of ways. First use the Internet to research
flight. There are many sites out on the cyber highway, such as
NASA's History of Flight and there is even a narrative
by Orville Wright.
Next, perhaps you can help your students understand the basics of
aerodynamics. Our own Teacher's Network has a lesson Air
Born, that uses store bought Styrofoam gliders (about
$2.50 each). There are other sites that use paper airplanes to teach
aerodynamics, such as
this NASA site, . Teach-nology has a whole page dedicated to
Do you remember how much you loved flying paper airplanes as a child?
Things haven't changed, students still love it!
Perhaps next, you can incorporate math into your flight, by having
your students fly their airplanes and then measuring the distance.
Compare and contrast different types of planes. Record the
information on MSExcel and create graphs. Have students analyze
the data they are collecting about their airplanes.
Then, to finish the project, you might have your students predict
the future of flight.
If you prefer to join a project already in progress, you might
want to look into Space Day.
Space Day is an online educational program, which is honoring
the past 100 years of aviation and aerospace accomplishments while
seeking to inspire the next generation of inventors, innovators,
aviators and dreamers with their design challenges. Students in
grades 4-8 are invited to develop a solution for one of the following
- Fly to the Future - build a model aircraft of the future.
- Planetary Explorers - design a model spacecraft that can fly
on Earth as well as another planet or moon in our solar system.
- Watt Power! - help save our planet's resources by developing
a working model of an aircraft that uses a renewable energy
Now, help your students find their wings and fly!