About 80 parents and kids at Del Mar Heights school recently participated in an Awesome Aerodynamics program, presented by Shalene Baxter from the San Diego Air and Space Museum. The presentation began with a computer slide show covering the history of aerodynamics. Pioneers in the field and their inventions were discussed in a humorous and informative manner.
Next, using a flip tablet, Baxter covered the principles behind the mechanics of flight. Selected students simulated the concepts of lift and drag. After the presentation, the kids followed along as Baxter led them through the process of creating three types of paper airplanes. Parent Margaret Pope stated, “She [Baxter] was engaging, energetic, and knowledgeable. She kept that auditorium of rambunctious youngsters completely spellbound and under control...'controlled chaos’, was the term she used. The kids had a ball testing their airplanes.”
This presentation was the latest installment of the “Science Friday” series, designed to give fifth and sixth graders extra exposure to math and science topics. Previous sessions have been presented by computer scientists, professors from UCSD, and FBI agents. The series is organized by a group of parents: Lita Roy, Melinda Johnson, Megan Yu, Kathy Nahum, Barb Roland, and Margaret Pope.