TeachersFirst's Man Soars Into Flight - Resources

On December 17, 1903, Wilbur Wright stretched out across the lower wing of the flying machine that he and his brother, Orville, had built and gently eased the machine into the world's first successful powered flight. The craft flew about 120 feet before settling back down into the sand of Kitty Hawk, North Carolina. Later that day, the Wrights made three additional flights; the last and longest covered more than 850 feet in just under one minute.

The Wrights may have succeeded where others had failed because they brought a unique combination of talents to their task. They were meticulous in their work, and they did not hesitate to develop their own theories and solutions, especially when commonly held assumptions about the physics of flight got in their way.

Since the Centennial of the Wrights' first flight in 2003, a bumper crop of web sites has appeared, devoted to the history of these creative inventors and to flight and aviation in general. These reviewed resources provide a great introduction to the Wright Brothers' achievements and to the principles and major figures involved with flight.

Include manned flight within a unit on inventors and inventions or with study of the late 19th and early 20th century in American History at any level. The Wright Brothers and other figures in flight can be part of a unit on famous scientists and their discoveries. Inspire inventiveness in your own students by having them create their own projects telling the story of flight using one of the reviewed digital storytelling tools from the TeachersFirst Edge:  something as simple as a comic strip or as elaborate as a multimedia presentation. 

Happy flying!

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U.S. Air Force Museum - U.S. Air Force

Grades
4 to 12
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Here's a site with dozens of images and histories of military and civilian aircraft. The site also includes histories of many aircraft used by U.S. presidents. This site could assist...more
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Here's a site with dozens of images and histories of military and civilian aircraft. The site also includes histories of many aircraft used by U.S. presidents. This site could assist with research on aviation history or related topics.

tag(s): air (106), aircraft (17), aviation (32), flight (30)

In the Classroom

Click on "explore museum exhibits" from the right menu, then scroll down the page and choose from a list of exhibit areas for photos of each plane and weapon featured in the museum. Aerospace teachers can use this site for example photos of planes being studied in class, while history teachers can use those same photos in units concerning the evolution of transportation or warfare. This site truly is an interdisciplinary webpage, and can be used to supplement lectures in many classrooms. After introducing this site, allow student pairs, groups, or individuals to explore and find an area of interest. Then extend student learning by asking them to do some research to see what more they can learn about their area of interest and have them create a Thinglink, reviewed here. With Thinglink students can add text, voice, videos, and hyperlinks to explain what they learned.

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How Air Force One Works - Howstuffworks

Grades
4 to 12
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For the fans of Presidential gadgets, Air Force One is the ultimate. Here's a site that really does explain how the president's jet functions and what it looks like on ...more
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For the fans of Presidential gadgets, Air Force One is the ultimate. Here's a site that really does explain how the president's jet functions and what it looks like on the inside. Lots of text, images, and animations will make this one attractive for curious airplane fans.

tag(s): air (106), aircraft (17), flight (30), presidents (115)

In the Classroom

Use this site as a starting point for students working on research projects or papers concerning the President and one of the many services surrounding him. This site has a lot of great information and would be a great springboard for further research. Make sure to include this site on any resource sheets concerning their research!

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