On the last school day 53 students from Metsokangas Comprehensive School worked with the project with the theme of planes and the flying effect. During the introduction we watched together a picture about the plane. Teachers asked students to think and answer which parts are the most important while the plane is in the air. They answered wings, elevator and rudder. Then we talked a little bit why the elevator and the rudder are important, how the plane can land, how does to shape of the plane affect to the flying effect, which forces affect to plane and also we talked about the shape of the wings. All students made a wing by using their hands. Almost all students knew that the bottom of the wing is straighter and the top of the wing is curved. Then we rehearsed how the air moves above and below the wing and how it is related to the flying effect.
After the introduction teachers told students what they will do next. They had heard before that they will have a possibility to fold planes on the last school day, but before they started to fold their planes they watched one example video. After that teachers told them about the schedule and they started their action.
At first all students had to decide which material they would use. Almost all decided to use printer paper that was easy to fold and it was light enough.
Students were allowed to use their own phones to find ideas how to fold planes. The most of them found instructions from Google or YouTube. After getting an idea what kind of plane they designed their own plane and folded it.
During folding the planes they were also allowed to test their planes in the PE class where the final competition was organised lately. After testing they knew how their plane glided and got ideas how to improve their planes. Many students folded several planes and tested them to get to know which one is the best.
After one hour planes were finished and decorated. For us as teachers it was nice to notice that almost all students liked more to fold planes than to decorate them. They used a lot of time to make their foldings better and they tested their planes many times before the competition instead of colouring them.
The competition with only one throw per student took 20 minutes with 53 students. However, this project worked well and students learned many new theoretical things about planes and the flying effect.
Next Jaana will implement the same kind of project in Beijing with her chinese co-worker Yiwen.
– Jaana, Petri and 53 students, Metsokangas Comprehensive School, Oulu, Finland –