Air pressure is pushing on us all the time although we do not usually notice it. In this activity, students learn about the units of pressure and get a sense of just how much air pressure is pushing on them.
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This lesson teaches the engineering method for testing wherein one variable is changed while the others are held constant. Students compare the performance of a single paper airplane design while changing the shape, size and position of flaps on the airplane. Students also learn about control surfaces on the tail and wings of an airplane.
The purpose of this activity is to bring together the students' knowledge of engineering and airplanes and the creation of a glider model to determine how each modification affects the flight. The students will use a design procedure whereby one variable is changed and all the others are kept constant.
Using gumdrops and toothpicks, students conduct a large-group, interactive ozone depletion model. Students explore the dynamic and competing upper atmospheric roles of the protective ozone layer, the sun's UV radiation and harmful human-made CFCs (chlorofluorocarbons).
Students learn about material properties, and that engineers must consider many different materials properties when designing. This activity focuses on strength-to-weight ratios and how sometimes the strongest material is not always the best material.
Students use the scientific method to determine the effect of control surfaces on a paper glider. They construct paper airplanes (model gliders) and test their performance to determine the base characteristics of the planes. Then they change one of the control surfaces and compare the results to their base glider in order to determine the cause and effect relationship of the control surfaces.
This lesson introduces students to the concept of air pressure. Students will explore how air pressure creates force on an object. They will study the relationship between air pressure and the velocity of moving air.
The purpose of this activity is for the students to draw a design for their own flying machine. They will apply their knowledge of aircraft design and the forces acting on them. The students will start with a brainstorming activity where they come up with creative uses for every day objects. They will then use their creativity and knowledge of airplanes to design their own flying machine.
While we know air exists around us all the time, we usually do not notice the air pressure. During this activity, students use Bernoulli's principle to manipulate air pressure so its influence can be seen on the objects around us.
This lesson is an exciting conclusion to the airplanes unit that encourages students to think creatively. After a review of the concepts learned, students will design their own flying machine based on their knowledge of the forces involved in flight, the properties of available materials, and the ways in which their flying machine could benefit society. Students will also learn how the brainstorming process helps in creative thinking and inventing and that scientists and engineers use this technique to come up with new products or modify and improve exiting products.
The purpose of this activity is to demonstrate some of the different parts of an airplane through the construction of a paper airplane. Students will build several different kinds of paper airplanes in order to figure out what makes an airplane fly and what can be changed to influence the flying characteristics of an airplane.
Students keep track of their own water usage for one week, gaining an understanding of how much water is used for various everyday activities. They relate their own water usages to the average residents of imaginary Thirsty County, and calculate the necessary water capacity of a dam that would provide residential water to the community.
This lesson focuses on the importance of airplanes in today's society. Airplanes of all shapes and sizes are used for hundreds of different reasons, including recreation, commercial business, public transportation, and delivery of goods, among many others. From transporting people to crop-dusting, our society and our economy have come to depend on airplanes. Students will discuss their own experiences with airplanes and learn more about the role of airplanes in our world.
The purpose of this activity is to demonstrate how aircrafts have decreased the amount of time it takes to transport people and cargo. Students will compute the time it takes to travel between two cities for several modes of transportation including trucks, trains and airplanes. Students will also do some critical thinking to determine why airplanes are not always used.
This lesson explores the drag force on airplanes. The students will be introduced to the concept of conservation of energy and how it relates to drag. Students will explore the relationship between drag and the shape, speed and size of an object.
Students revisit Bernoulli's Principle (Lesson 1 of the Airplanes unit) and learn how engineers use this principle to design airplane wings. Airplane wings create lift by changing the pressure of the air around it. This is the first of four lessons exploring the four key forces in flight: lift, weight, thrust and drag.
In this lesson, students will study how propellers and jet turbines generate thrust. This lesson focuses on Isaac Newton's 3rd Law of Motion, which states that for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction.
The purpose of this lesson is to help students understand the relationship between the mass and the weight of an object. Students will study the properties of common materials and why airplanes use specific materials.
In this activity, students will learn about Newton's 2nd Law of Motion. They will learn that the force required to move a book is proportional to the weight of the book. Engineers use this relationship to determine how much force they need to move an airplane.
This lesson introduces students to the art of designing an airplane through paper airplane constructions. The goal is that students will learn important aircraft design considerations and how engineers must iterate their designs to achieve success. Students first follow several basic paper airplane models, after which they will then design their own paper airplane. They will also learn how engineers make models to test ideas and designs.
Students learn about friction and drag two different forces that convert energy of motion to heat. Both forces can act on a moving object and decrease its velocity. Students learn examples of friction and drag, and suggest ways to reduce the impact of these forces. The equation that governs common frictional forces is introduced, and during a hands-on activity, students experimentally measure a coefficient of friction.
In this lesson, students will learn about kites and gliders and how these models can help in understanding the concept of flight. Students will design and build their own balsa wood models and experiment with different control surfaces. The goal of this lesson is for students to apply their existing knowledge about the four forces affecting flight and apply engineering design to develop a sound glider. They will also communicate the reasoning and results of any design modifications made.
Through this activity, Bernoulli's principle as it relates to winged flight is demonstrated. Student pairs use computers and an online virtual wind tunnel to see the influence of camber and airfoil angle of attack on lift. Activity and math worksheets are provided.
The purpose of this activity is to demonstrate Newton's 3rd Law of Motion, which is the physical law that governs thrust in aircraft. The students will do several activities that show that for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction.