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Beginner’s Guide to Aeronautics


Found In: math, science, preK-2, 3-5, 6-8, 9-12

Beginner’s Guide to Aeronautics is really a collection of beginner’s guides on single topics related to flying and aeronautics including baseball, soccer, water rockets, kites, airplanes from the Wright Brothers to jets, and jet engines. Each guide has an index, which links to topic pages, animations, interactives, and simulators. Individual topic pages link to grade level activities. The guides are designed for K-12 and higher students.

Elementary Students

The Ultra-Efficient Engine Technology (UEET) Kids Pages covers the history and dynamics of flight, airplanes, and engines. It provides a section on vocabulary and links to other educational resources.

  • Fun and Games offers six activities: quizzes, word scrambles, dot-to-dot, matching, and word searches.
  • Lesson Plans offers four PDF lessons for K-8 students.
  • One of the lessons, Johnny’s Airport Adventure, (K-4) includes an Educator Guide (PDF icon PDF, 3.4 MB, 59 pgs.) and a Poster (PDF icon PDF, 6.7 MB 1 pg.) of an airport with cutouts.

Middle School and High School Students

Re-Living The Wright Way examines the Wright Brother’s invention process and their discoveries and provides links to lesson plans, simulations, presentations, activities, and links to free software to foster hands-on, inquiry-based learning in science and math.

  • Simulations can be used online or downloaded. One simulation lets students explore how the Elevator worked on the Wright Brother’s airplane.
  • Presentations include a series of ten videos by actors portraying Wilbur and Orville Wright discussing scientific topics related to flight. These brief videos should be downloaded. (Note: I was unable to watch them online.)
  • Activities include Models of the Wright Brothers’ Aircraft, plans for building static models of the 1900, 1901, 1902, and 1903 aircraft.

Note: The NASA websites are a huge resource and undergo periodic reorganization. If a link doesn’t work, a site search can often produce results.

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