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Learning the Scientific Method with Paper Rockets

Grade Range
6th-8th
Group Size
1-4 students
Active Time
3-4 hours
Total Time
3-4 hours
Area of Science
Aerodynamics & Hydrodynamics
Key Concepts
Scientific method, flight, forces
Learning Objectives
  • Conduct background research and develop an appropriate hypothesis
  • Design and conduct an experiment to test the hypothesis
  • Draw conclusions from the results of the experiment

Overview

Do you need a fun, easy way to teach your students about the scientific method? Try this lesson that uses rockets made from nothing but paper, tape, and straws. An elementary school version of this lesson plan is also available.

NGSS Alignment

This lesson helps students prepare for these Next Generation Science Standards Performance Expectations:
  • MS-Science Practices.
This lesson focuses on these aspects of NGSS Three Dimensional Learning:

Science & Engineering Practices Disciplinary Core Ideas Crosscutting Concepts
Asking Questions.

Developing and Using Models.

Planning and Carrying Out Investigations.

Analyzing and Interpreting Data.

Using Mathematical and Computational Thinking.

Constructing Explanations.

Engaging in Argument from Evidence.

Obtaining, Evaluating, and Communicating Information.
The Disciplinary Core Ideas that apply to this project, if any, will depend on how students choose to focus their investigation.
Patterns. Graphs, charts, and images can be used to identify patterns in data.

Cause and Effect. Relationships can be classified as causal or correlational, and correlation does not necessarily imply causation.

Systems and System Models. Models can be used to represent systems and their interactions—such as inputs, processes, and outputs—and energy, matter, and information flows within systems.

Credits

Ben Finio, PhD, Science Buddies

Materials


materials needed to make paper rockets
  • Paper
  • Scissors
  • Tape
  • Drinking straws
  • Tape measure

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Grade Range
6th-8th
Group Size
1-4 students
Active Time
3-4 hours
Total Time
3-4 hours
Area of Science
Aerodynamics & Hydrodynamics
Key Concepts
Scientific method, flight, forces
Learning Objectives
  • Conduct background research and develop an appropriate hypothesis
  • Design and conduct an experiment to test the hypothesis
  • Draw conclusions from the results of the experiment

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