Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Jonathan's Aircraft Project

Today I thought it would be fun to show you not one of my projects but one of Jonathan's. He has loved making things for a long time and I enjoy seeing what he comes up with. Lately it has been Popsicle stick planes. First they started out quite simple.... a few sticks for the body and a few sticks for wings (he uses the hot glue gun to put them together) but know he is way past that!

One evening he disappeared into my office/craft room and then came out with this:
The picture really doesn't do it justice. It is an old fashioned (think Wright brothers) style plane which is over 2 feet across. He also made and attached wheels and propellers.

After he started making the planes we started reading "They gave us wings, The Wright Brothers" by Charles Ludwig (it is part of the Sower series and a great book). Every day while I read he sits totally absorbed while It talks about camber, square footage and correct wing lift. It has been so fun to see his passion for air travel.

While flying out to North Carolina, Jonathan had a blast watching the planes and jets and figuring out everything he could about them. Watching the wings adjust during flight was fascinating for him. He also brought along a little series of books we had on the History of flight and had fun reading them and learning a lot.

While at the Airborne museum we saw a glider that carried the little jeeps so when we got home he decided he needed to making something of that nature. Here he is hard at work:
And then the finished creation: Today's activity was to figure out how to hang them up all around the boys' room. We also went to the library and he was totally delighted when I found a bunch of books that talk about different types of aircraft, how to fly a plane, History, and Biographies of a couple pilots. We also checked out a video on a WWII plane which we watched this evening. Something I love about this is how much he can learn from just following his interests. Just in studying planes he has learned Science, History, Math and Geography. His passion has also pulled his siblings (and Ken and I) into being interested in it so the learning has spread throughout the whole family.

Do you have any cool book suggestions of fun activity ideas for encouraging his learning and exploring in this area? I would love to hear!

Linked to DIY day at A Soft Place to Land.


Jackie said...

Love the planes! I need to show them to my 7 year old and I bet he would want to make one. He builds all sorts of things out of legos, but this would be cool.

Sherri @ Design2Shine said...

How creative he is! I love the planes. My son had a few he made hanging around his room too. (back then! as he is 22 now and on his own).
We have a small airport here and their dad used to take them out to watch the planes take off and land. He took flying lessons and both of my kids have been able to fly around in a small plane. NOT for me! But they loved it. There is a group that does free 'flies' for kids a few times a year too.

Kimberly said...

Found ryour blog from another blog, I've been lurking for a bit, living here in "Boeingland" We have an amazing Museum of Flight, they might have some ideas on the website. http://www.museumofflight.org/

We saw the Blue Angels fly from there last summer, here is the links on my blog to our adventure, and lots of photos (two entries).



One of my sons came home and created a replica of the plane the Blues fly, out of legos, after our day. These boys are amazing, that can take a quick look at these planes and recreate them! What a gift from God!

Abbi said...

Thanks everybody! I can relate to the lego planes as well- that is what Jonathan started out doing too and is still enjoying, but the popsicles are something new and different.

Thanks for the links, I am looking forward to looking at them with Jonathan.

Anonymous said...

Those are really impressive planes! Nate Saint was a missionary to the Waoranis tribe in S. America and was an avid flyer. Reading about him would be sad (he dies) but include aircraft. He flew for Mission Aviation Fellowship. Their website is www.maf.org. I think it has some paper models Jonathon could make. ~♥Anna


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