Airplanes Project

Students start by learning the different parts of an airplane, the four forces that act on an airplane in steady level flight, and how thrust is produced for gliders. The students then assemble either a wooden balsa glider or a paper airplane, and are then given time to decorate them. The students then compete for either longest range or maximum endurance. Depending on time, students have opportunities to add weight, add control surfaces, try for rolls, loops, and turns, or otherwise modify their gliders.
Learning Objectives:This lesson satisfies the following Next Generation Science Standards:
K-PS2-1. Plan and conduct an investigation to compare the effects of different strengths or different directions of pushes and pulls on the motion of an object.
K-PS2-2. Analyze data to determine if a design solution works as intended to change the speed or direction of an object with a push or a pull.
3-PS2-1. Plan and conduct an investigation to provide evidence of the effects of balanced and unbalanced forces on the motion of an object.
Recommended Age Group:Grades 1-12
Location:Hallways, Large Rooms, Outside
Estimated Time:30 minutes

Airplanes Lesson Summary