Slats and Flaps in Nature

  • Pictures of the wings of airplanes and birds with descriptive definitions of the various parts of the wings.
  • Poster boards
  • Pencils, erasers, and rulers
  • Balsa wood model airplanes to assemble and fly
  • Paper to make paper airplanes
  • Scissors and tape
  • Binoculars

one Have a discussion together about the material in the Teacher Text.

two Show the pictures of the wings of airplanes and birds. Discuss the various parts.

three Hand out poster boards to each student. Ask them to list in two columns the similar parts on the bird wing and airplane wing that approximate the same function in flight.

four Put the model balsa wood airplanes together and proceed outside. Take turns "flying" the planes. For those students who cannot bring in a model airplane have them make paper airplanes with paper, scissors, and tape (they can include slats and flaps on the paper airplanes). Ask the students to make observations of the flight of the planes.

five Take turns watching birds fly through the binoculars. Ask the students to make observations of the flight of the birds.

six Return to the classroom and discuss the observations of the students of the flight abilities of the birds and the airplanes and how flaps and slats improve the quality of lift.

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Last modified: Sat Nov 15 19:02:29 PST 1997

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