Engineering Rockets and Rovers




by Maggie Brown


Fifth grade students will research rockets and rovers and then lead after-school clubs that focus on the history and building of rockets and rovers, after which there will be a space exposition.rktparts rover


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.