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Tipsfor Educators

This page is designed for educators that want to introduce this safe, educational and fun hobby to their students.  This pages is specifically designed for the classroom educator, scout leader, church leader, 4H Leader, or space enthusiast who want to do model rocketry as a group.

 

eRockets has provided material sources and advice for a number of years providing successful endeavors across the United States.

Helpful tips:

 

#1 Buy and Build with the proper age group.

Building rockets is not difficult and kids as young as 5 years old can do it with the help and patients of an adult.

However, the best age group to start with is the 9 to 10 year old range.  These kids have the attention span and reading ability to be successful with a little bit of encouragement.

Don't get me wrong, a build and fly session can be successful with younger kids (providing one on one supervision for every kid under 9) all the way up to adults.  Many rocketry Sections with the NAR hold build sessions every year and may even help your group out of you ask for help.

www.nar.org

#2 Have enough building supplies for each table to use.  Each kit has different needs so take that into consideration for special things like plastic model cement.

Also be sure to provide news paper to protect the furniture and paper towel to clean up hands and other messes.

 

#3  Letting the glue dry.  Different manufacturers have different methods in their instructions on use of glue.  The best advice is to teach the kids from the beginning to use glue sparingly, if it is running there is too much.  all of the manufacturers with balsa fins instruct to put another layer of glue between the fin and body tube, this is called a fillet and is there to strengthen the joint.  Again is it runs there is too much.

 

#4  Super Glue can be a real problem and I do not recommend using it.  However, it does not hurt of the instructor has a bottle available to help the process along towards the end of the build to help stragglers get caught up.  And be available on the field to make quick repairs. 

 

#5  As in instructor you are expected to have all of the answers.  So learn about the subject by building one of the kit ahead of time.  This will allow you to wander around the room and answer questions and advise the builders.  Plus you get to show them the finished product.

 

#6  Have the kids read their own instructions and do their own work.  If they are not old enough to read have a helper help them, after all this is educational in more than one way.

 

#7  Have your launch equipment in order ahead of time.  If you do not own a launch pad and controller buy a starter kit that has everything you need in it.  Have a reliable power supply and be prepared to use your car battery if the primary supply fails.

 

#8  The model rocket safety code is an important factor in having a safe launch.  Make yourself aware of what is in the code and follow the code to set a good example for the kids.  Oh, and don't forget that a countdown is a group activity!

 

#9  Have fun!

Needed to complete the kit:

Scissors - Plastic Model Cement - White or wood glue.

Needed to complete the kit:

Scissors - White or wood glue - Ruler - Sand Paper 220 grip is best - Finishing supplies like Markers, stickers or paint

Needed to complete the kit:

Scissors - White or wood glue - Ruler - Sand Paper 220 grip is best - Finishing supplies like Markers, stickers or paint

Needed to complete the kit:

Scissors - White or wood glue - Ruler - Sand Paper 220 grip is best - Finishing supplies like Markers, stickers or paint

Needed to complete the kit:

Scissors - White or wood glue - Ruler - Sand Paper 220 grip is best - Finishing supplies like Markers, stickers or paint

Needed to complete the kit:

Scissors - White or wood glue - Sand Paper 220 grip is best - Wax paper - Finishing supplies like Markers, stickers.

Which kit is best for us?

 

I recommend all of these kits.  However I feel the best build session kit is the Semroc My Boid, it is much more fun building every kit in a different configuration giving the kids a very unique bird at the end of the build.

 

Secondly I like the Quest Payloader One.  It is a largest kit and there is a payload for insects to ride.

 

Thirdly, the Edmonds Deltie is a good option.  The models are very well designed and it is fun to do these in a group if you need a change.  I tried these first on a group of 3rd graders (8 years old) and they did just fine!