There are several lessons you can teach with the 12 templates for folding different types of paper airplanes. The lessons can be as simple or as complex as you wish to teach your children.
Some Points You May Wish to Teach:
1.) Engineers made models called prototypes of products before they build the real thing.
a.) A prototype is an early model to test ideas. What works and what does not.
b.) It doesn’t cost as much money because you use materials that are cheaper and test idea.
c.) Later, you can replicated a larger scale item with the knowledge learned and pattern you developed.
2.) Today we will be engineers. Building airplanes out of paper.
a.) The design you make will affect how your plane will fly.
b.) Some designs fly far, some fly high and some take nose dives.
At this point, that is all you will tell them.
3.) Build some of the planes below. This is a good activity to have a helper for, or to have at least one of each plane available for the children to test flying.
a.) Be sure to set out regular paper, construction paper and cardstock. Have paperclips and tape available. Allow for some creativity.
There are plane designs below for you to test, or design your own.
Thank You to Flero.net for the airplane design tips.
4.) What did they learn?
a.) What makes the airplane fly?
b.) Did some planes fly (glide) further? Why do you think that was?
Maybe they were lighter (weight), the wings were a different design or shaped differently (aerodynamic), and they caught more air? Which designs flew further? Maybe, graph the ones that did for math?
c.) Did you have to throw (launch) some harder (thrust) to get them to fly?
Yes, this is true. Again -aerodynamics.
5.) Leave out all the materials for the children to experiment with ideas they had not tried during center time.