Paper Planes Are Soarin’ in Westridge School’s 8th Grade Science Study of Force & Motion!
Westridge 8th graders put their folding and throwing skills to the test for their Nakamura Airplane lab in Middle School Science Teacher Darren Brown’s Concepts in Earth and Physical Science class over the last few days. The lesson was part of a unit on force and motion, learning about lift and Bernoulli’s Principle, which are theories on how planes fly.
In this lab assignment, students used the scientific method—which involves a question, research, hypothesis, experimentation, data analysis, and a conclusion—to test their hypotheses based on observational data. They held three trials: first, students threw the same design of airplane (Nakamura—a style designed by Japanese origami paper plane artist Eiji Nakamura) while documenting distance and flight patterns; second, they used observations from the first trial to create a testable hypothesis with the aim of increasing flight distance; third, they used observations and data from the first two trials to create a final hypothesis, again to increase flight distance.
Shout out to Hayden Y. ’28, who threw her paper airplane for 19.9 meters (about 65 feet)—the longest distance achieved in the grade!
Westridge School, 324 Madeline Drive, Pasadena, (626) 799-1053 ext. 200 or visit www.westridge.org.