January 21


Aerospace engineers, who design planes, helicopters, drones, and rockets, as well as pilots and astronauts, understand the laws of force and motion. Second grade aerospace engineers continued their study of force and motion and space through the investigation of rotocopters.

God created the first helicopters. The process of scientists or engineers copying creation is called biomimicry.

I used several science toys to demonstrate how a helicopter flies. Helicopters stay in the air with spinning blades that generate “lift.”

We each made a rotocopter using the pattern below.

But is this the best design? I changed one variable in each iteration below. As I dropped these paper rotocopters in the rotunda (an 18 foot drop), we observed how the speed and the rotation of the blades were impacted when the size of the rotocopter, the weight of the shaft, or the length of the blades were changed. I also folded the blades in different manners.

Next week, we are going to apply what we’ve learned and design our own rotocopters.

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