How Do Airplanes Fly?

Up, up, and away! Physics scholars learn the secrets to defying gravity through engineering. The video describes the forces acting on various parts of the plane and the designs that minimize these forces or increase opposing forces. The narrator also discusses how jet engines work and the process of optimizing jet engine performance. 

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Instructional Ideas

  • Integrate the resource into a Newton's Laws or forces unit
  • Pair students for a paper airplane design lab to experiment with some of the forces mentioned in the video 
Classroom Considerations

  • Consider giving a pre-assessment to determine how much the class knows about thrust, lift, and forces 
Pros

  • The narrator uses familiar examples to link new concepts to prior knowledge
  • Animated sketches show pupils the forces at work on an airplane's wings and how their design helps them overcome downward force
Cons

  • None