Tuesday, June 01, 2010

Lesson Plans Day 1: Aerodynamics and the Scientific Method

I. Introductions

What does it mean to be a Scientist/Engineer?

--teach kids how to think like a scientist, ask questions and solve problems like a scientist.
--work in groups to solve problems
-----Split kids up into groups/teams. Team names, perhaps.
--use scientific method

II. Scientific Method
---To figure out what makes things fly farther.

---What do we know about planes?
----------what do planes look like, what are common features?
----------what are planes made out of?
---Introduce Variables:
-----Plane Mass
----------Copier paper
----------Aluminum Foil
----------Multiple sheets of each
-----Plane Shape
----------Traditional, streamlined model
----------Snub nosed stunt plane model
----------Any other designs?

-----Which plane will fly better?
-----Make predictions.

-----Test predicitons
----------Mark distances with chopstick flags (each type of flag corresponding to type of plane)
----------Physical and graphic representation of flight distances.

-----Which plane flew farthest?
-----Which factor/variable is more important? Mass or Plane Shape?

-----Summary, wrap up.

-----OR, for younger kids.-----

II. Know, Wonder, Learn
-----What do we know about airplanes?
----------What do they look like?
----------What are they made out of?

---What do we want to know about planes?
-----What makes them fly farther or shorter?

-----What did we learn today?

Materials and Preparations:
89+ Sheets of Copier Paper 8.5" x 11" (one for each student, ideally)
45+ Sheets of Aluminum paper 8.5" x 11" (for half of the students, roughly)
10+ chopstick flags (copier paper)
10+ chopstick flags (aluminum foil)
10+ chopstick flags (double copier paper)

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