Gateway Science Museum

Virtual Curiosity

Mission Aerospace Fun Continues! 

Remember our exciting exhibit, Mission Aerospace, the one with the paper airplanes and rocket launchers? Well, we couldn't be open in 2020, so how about practicing making and flying your own at home? 

mission aerospace logo

  What can you discover about paper airplanes? 

  • Can make your paper airplanes out of different size and different weights and types of paper? 
  • Which kind of paper works the best for long distance flights? 
  • Which kinds of paper works best for aerobatics? 
  • Try different types of designs(opens in new window). Which designs works best for distance flights? 
  • Which designs work best for doing tricks? 

Activity 1: Paper Airplane testing - Going the Distance (PDF) Building and testing different types of paper airplanes.  What can you discover about paper airplanes? 

Activity 2: Roto-Copter Lab (PDF) Practice using a scientific procedure to determine how variables affect the fall speed of a paper helicopter. 

Activity 3: Staying Afloat (PDF) Identifying forces that allow airplanes to fly by participating in demonstrations of Bernoulli's principle. 

Activity 4: Magnetic Compasses (PDF) Explore the properties of magnets and use them to create a simple navigation tool, the compass.  

Activity 5: Paper Rockets (PDF) Design, construct, and fly paper rockets that will travel the greatest distance possible across a floor model of the solar system.