Engineering Rockets and Rovers




Goals, objectives, and activities

The goal of this project is to have 10 5th graders lead after school clubs that cater to grades 1-5.  They will research rockets and land rovers. They then will (with facilitator support) run after school clubs that focus on the history and building of both rockets and rovers.  Once they have completed the clubs course we will have a science space exposition , run by the children, to demonstrate to parents,the community and school what they have created and learned. It is an opportunity to foster leadership among the 5th graders while having them take on responsibility as well.
The children will:

  • ask questions and make predictions
  • select and use appropriate tools and technology
  • keep accurate records
  • record data and communicate findings to others
  • use measurement and mathematical concepts using the engineering design process plan out and create a rover design
  • plan a test and rework the rovers if they are not deemed successful

The 5th graders will become ‘experts” on rockets and rovers.  They will then plan out using technology, i pads, smart-board, computers, their clubs’ weekly agenda. They will advertise the club and produce an end product that they present to a group of administrators, parents, school committee members and peers. They will prepare all materials and run the club (with facilitator)
They will be responsible for assessing themselves and the club members.


How will the project be evaluated (e.g. how will you gauge its success)

The project will follow the Massachusetts State Science and Technology and Engineering Frameworks. The success of the clubs will be how many children participate and they will be given a pre and post questionnaire.  It will ask them for their expectations and whether those expectations were met by the club.  One club will be offered for the 5th graders to run and depending upon its success other clubs will be offered.

The 5th graders will also judge how they thought the club went and will self evaluate before offering the club again. The facilitator will also document through anecdotal records and pictures the clubs progress and successes.


Benefit to the students and the school

The 5th grade students will be afforded an opportunity to learn about leadership and responsibility by researching, designing and running the clubs. The other children will benefit from having peers teach them about an interesting and highly motivational topic.  The clubs will be offered for free to the children.  If the clubs are wildly successful then the school can offer a Rocket and Rover experience over the summer to residents.


Budget (Please detail how funding will be used. Itemize as appropriate.)

Steve Spangler film canister rockets and launchers 30 launchers – 30.00
30 Canisters – 20.00
Box of Alka Seltzer – 20.00
Estes Rockets Teacher pack 24 rockets – (2)100.00
Launch pad- 20.00
Parachutes – 40.00
Mini Solar panels for rovers mini panels – 50.00
wheels- 20.00
Book on rocketry from NASA book- 25.00
children’s books rockets, rovers Mars, Rover (reference)- 75.00
Other materials and supplies need for creating rovers about – 100.00

Timeline of Project (when will you do the project, if applicable.)

The 5th grade students will start in November researching rockets and rovers through the history of both.  They will create power points or Smart board activities to explain to the students who will be joining the clubs.  They will create a progression of rocket making and launching and rover making and criteria for both.

The clubs will start in mid-January and run until mid-June if they are successful.