Aerodynamics Teacher Resources

Find Aerodynamics educational ideas and activities

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High schoolers study paper airplanes. In this lesson on aerodynamics, students print out the folding directions for making paper airplanes and after making the planes test their paper airplanes to see how well each flies. High schoolers weigh their planes, measure the length of their planes and the wingspan plotting this data on graphs.
Young scholars calculate frictional force after examining the different types of friction and drag. Using a box, basket, and weights, they collect friction data and measure a coefficient of static friction. In teams, they answer questions based on the lesson.
Students research aerodynamics using Web sites provided by the teacher. Working in groups, they design paper airplanes, test them, and choose a final plane to fly against the other groups. They graph flight results using a spreadsheet program.
Students experiment with the principles in aerodynamics as they are challenged to keep a bubble aloft as long as possible. They apply their observations to the aerodynamics used in airplane technology.
Young scholars investigate Bernoulli's Principle as they examine forces that influence a body in flight. They build simple aerodynamic designs and observe the reaction of these designs in flight..
High schoolers read a textbook about aerodynamics. They find out the definition of Mach number. They complete problems designed to demonstrate their ability to solve Mach number equations.
The history of aerodynamics is rich with experimentation and international collaboration. Author Joyce Bryant relays this dynamic past and provides math word problems using the formula of lift, the force that makes airplanes fly. She suggests; to fly a kite, release a toy balloon, or place strips of paper in a fan to provide tangible demonstrations of the force of air molecules in understanding lift. Diagrams are not included.
Students build a simple wind tunnel and test out 2 glider wing shapes at different angles of attack. They record their observations and results just as engineers do. There also is a "virtual wind tunnel" they can try to test aerodynamic stability.
Students investigate the physics of flight through various experiments. In this physics lesson, students construct different flying objects. They explain the dynamics that make these object fly.
Students, after reading an explanation from a NASA Web-based textbook, you demonstrate an understanding of the text by applying it to questions involving the theories of how a wing produces lift.
Students perform research into the designs of Japanese kites in order to appreciate them for their aerodynamic designs. The appreciation builds student interest in order to produce their own similar designs.
Students investigate and demonstrate how aerodynamic downforce is more important than drag reduction in automobile racing. They research to find data about the quality of speed and performance in auto racing since aerodynamic downforce has been a focus.
Students demonstrate the effects of aerodynamics. In this aerodynamics lesson students name parts of the helicopter and construct a device that can fly. Students works to  build their own paper helicopter.
Students investigate the relationship between impulse, momentum, kinetic and potential energy and aerodynamic drag. In this physics lesson, students calculate data taken from launching a rocket. They compare the theoretical and actual kinetic energy values.

New Review Balancing Ball

Demonstrate lift to the class that is studying aerodynamics. In the stream of air produced by a blow dryer, little physicists place a wad of tissue paper and a spherical figure to compare. Or, if you have a vacuum cleaner and beach ball, you can demonstrate on a larger scale. You can use Bernoulli's principle to help them explain how the airstream flows around the objects and determines their motion. 
While your physical science class is studying mechanics, this would be a fabulous enrichment video for covering aerodynamics or friction. Mechanical engineers dedicate their time to developing Olympic-quality bobsleds to be as fast, but also as safe, as possible for this dangerous sport. Incorporate current events as you discuss the Sochi Winter Olympics as scientists.
What an incredible collection of ideas for teaching about the 2014 World Cup in Brazil! This resource is packed with news articles and instructional activities on a wide variety of topics, from the global popularity of soccer and the economic and geographic makeup of Brazil, to researching the aerodynamic properties of the World Cup soccer ball or how the country is handling preparations for this major event. 
Aspiring aeronautical engineers demonstrate different forces as they construct and test paper airplanes. This lesson plan links you to a website that models the most effective paper airplane design, an animation describing the forces affecting flight, and an interactive that allows learners to design and test the lift of a wing. Ideas are given for cross-curricular extensions involving the history of flight.
Students read from a NASA Web-based textbook, then students demonstrate an understanding of the text by answering questions about the forces on an airplane and their resulting motions.
Three activities allow young flight engineers to understand the 4 principles of flight (weight, lift, thrust, and drag), to construct a glider, and to create a propeller. Multicultural history and literature are integrated by reading Laurence Yep's Newbery-winning novel Dragonwings. Exhaustive information about the science of flight, Chinese immigration at the turn of the 20th century, and the Wright Brothers requires time to digest. A nicely integrated set of activities.

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Aerodynamics