Science Week Rockets and Planes in Year 4

The Year 4 pupils had a brilliant Science Week at Michael Faraday School. We decided to build a couple of rockets and launch them in our school playground.

We spent some time in the classroom looking at the theory behind our experiment. The class members researched the outcome when vinegar and bicarbonate soda are mixed together. We discovered that this can be quite explosive!

Safety was a key issue here. The role of the children was to design and build a couple of rockets. We used empty plastic bottles, and then attached four legs to hold the rocket in place.

The rockets were then filled with vinegar and a cork was put over the top. The idea was that when the bicarbonate soda reacted with the vinegar, the pressure would force the cork out onto the ground and propel the rockets forward.

All class members headed out to our outdoor theatre space. We made sure that everyone was a safe distance behind the experiment. Class teacher Zoe was responsible for launching the rockets in a safe manner.

The results were spectacular, although rocket #1 named Speedy didn’t quite live up to its name. It had something of a false start, but then was able to generate a small explosion.

Rocket #2 named Jumper lived up to its name! We counted down, and then before we could reach 10 Jumper had launched itself a couple of metres high. We spent a little time back in the classroom discussing the conclusion of our experiment.

Another Science Week experiment has seen the Year 4 children design and create their own paper aeroplanes. Each class member was asked to think about the best design that would propel their planes the furthest.

Each plane was launched safely from the school balcony. The children were asked to experiment with how to launch their planes. We found the best designs were those that were able to have the nose heading upwards.

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