Skip to main content

Planes, Gliders and Paper Rockets: Simple Flying Things Anyone Can Make--Kites and Copters, Too! [Book]

Planes, Gliders and Paper Rockets: Simple Flying Things Anyone Can Make--Kites and Copters, Too!
Rick Schertle and James Floyd Kelly

I wish I had found this book a few years ago when my son was younger. It would have greatly helped established my “Dad Credentials” when he came to me with his imaginative and fun project ideas. I am somewhat handy and can make some basic things, but having Planes, Gliders and Paper Rockets around as a ready reference guide sure would have helped. That said, if you have kids who want to start “making”, this is a great, fun place to start.

Planes, Gliders and Paper Rockets provides several projects from paper helicopters (with optional, but cool, LED lights), Rubber band airplanes, kites, foam air rockets and more. According to the book’s preface, this is the first in a series of books from Maker Media and sets a good example for the other books in the series. I’ll certainly be on the lookout for more like this.


Each project provides some basic discussion starters about the scientific concepts involved in each project and then moves into a careful and well illustrated step-by-step guide for building and then flying the project. All the photos are clear and well-captioned. Templates are included when useful and a complete supplies list are provided for each project. Some projects can also be purchased from Make as complete kits, ready to be assembled.

Planes, Gliders and Paper Rockets would be a great book for kids and adults to work through together, over the course of several weeks or months -- growing in skills with each project. Older kids could put together many of these projects on their own, if they were looking for a place to start their own maker adventures.

Of course, a book like this is could also be used in any educational environment to discuss a wide variety of engineering, aeronautical and scientific concepts. Hands-on activities are a great way of clarifying and solidifying new concepts by applying theories as soon as possible after they are learned.

If you’re looking to get away from your computer for a while and enjoy some time making things with your hands instead of just your mind, Planes, Gliders and Paper Rockets is a great place to start.

Rick Schertle is a master at the craft of teaching middle school in San Jose and a novice maker at home. His diverse interests include backyard chickens, adventure travel, veggie oil-fueled cars and geocaching - all made more fun with the enthusiastic support of his wife and the crazy antics of his young son and daughter. 
James is a writer who lives in Atlanta, GA with his wife and two young sons. He has degrees in Industrial Engineering and English and enjoys making things, writing about those things, and training young makers. He has written over 25 books on a variety of subjects from LEGO robotics to Open Source software to building your own CNC machine and 3D printer.
Recommended

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Onion Pi makes your web traffic anonymous via Open Electronics

Hmmm, might be an easy (and relatively cheap) way to play around with Tor and learn a bit more about this anonymizing service. -- Douglas Adafruit’s Onion Pi is a Tor proxy that makes your web traffic anonymous, allowing you to use the internet free of snoopers and any kind of surveillance. Follow Adafruit’s tutorial on setting up Onion Pi and you’re on your way to a peaceful anonymous browsing experience. Tor is an onion routing service – every internet packet goes through 3 layers of relays before going to your destination. This makes it much harder for the server you are accessing (or anyone snooping on your Internet use) to figure out who you are and where you are coming from. Read Onion Pi makes your web traffic anonymous via Open Electronics * A portion of each sale from Amazon.com directly supports our blogs ** Many of these books may be available from your local library. Check it out! An interesting link found among my daily reading

How to Build a Raspberry Pi-Powered Digital Photo Frame via Tom's Hardware

A digital photo frame is a small screen that can sit on your desk in your office or in your kitchen displaying your favorite pictures, changing at regular intervals. The first commercial digital photo frame was introduced in the 1990s shortly after the digital camera. Digital photo frames made a comeback in popularity during 2020, perhaps because people were staying at home more. In this tutorial, we’ll turn our Raspberry Pi into a digital photo frame using MagicMirror and the GooglePhotos module. Please note, we will skip installation of the 2-way mirror in the original Magic Mirror project. Consider this project, “Magic Mirror, without the mirror.” Read How to Build a Raspberry Pi-Powered Digital Photo Frame via Tom's Hardware An interesting link found among my daily reading

On my Mac/Windows PC…Disk Inventory X/WinDirStat

Disk Inventory X | WinDirStat   There comes a time in every computer user's life when they need to figure out why their hard drive is out of space and Disk Inventory X and WinDirStat are a great help. Their operation is pretty straightforward. Look at the hard drive directory and see what is taking up the most space. Then allow the user to prune, backup or other remove these files to free up some space. Simple, effective and very, very useful when you need it. Free Previously in On My Mac... iMovie Tweetdeck Celtx Scriptwriting Software LogMeIn Kindle Reader MarsEdit Blog Editor Cyberduck Minecraft Dropbox Garageband MPEG Streamclip Google Chrome Evernote On My Mac/Windows PC is an on-going series highlighting the software (and sometimes, hardware) I use on my Mac nearly every day. Look for additional On My Mac…posts in the coming weeks! -- Douglas