Home School Life Journal From Preschool to High School

Home School Life Journal ........... Ceramics by Katie Bergenholtz
"Let us strive to make each moment beautiful."
Saint Francis DeSales

Experimenting with Model Rockets. Part 5: Finishing Up the Rockets and Practicing Using Clinometers

This week everyone began to work at different paces on finishing their rockets, so I could not take photos in class. I needed to finish our control rocket anyway, so I took pictures for this week's post during that time instead.
(Previous steps in rocket building here.)
Strengthen fins and add launch lug. Wait until the glue is dry. With your finger or a toothpick, add glue along both sides of each fin joint and smooth with your finger. Glue the launch lug along the base of one fin, making sure not to get glue inside the ends of the launch lug. Be sure it is on straight.  Allow the glue to dry completely. If you want to decorate your rocket, now is the time to do it.

Pack wadding and streamer. Bunch up two pieces of wadding,
 one at a time and push them into the front of the tube. 
Blow until you hear them "puff" against the engine block ring.
Roll up the streamer. 
 Wrap the shock cord around it two or three times to make a small tight package. 
Put the streamer and the shock cord loosely in the tube so they will slide out easily. 

Practicing Using Clinometers

We practiced using our clinometers again, this time using a helium balloon. The class was again divided into two teams. One team was stationed upwind and the other was stationed downwind. When the balloon was released in the middle of these two teams, my assistant with a timer, called off intervals of 20 seconds for the teams to measure the angular height to which the balloon was ascending.
Back inside, these results were graphed to reveal wind patterns.
Once we completed this activity, we continued to work on building our rockets.
sources and resources:
  • Experimenting with Model Rockets GEMS Teacher's Guide
  • Height-O-Meters GEMS Teacher's Guide
  • Exploring Creation with General Science, Jay Wile


  1. My goodness - what a great study this is turning out to be!

  2. I need to go by Hobby Lobby soon and get stuff for my kids to make rockets, we're almost to that point for our astronomy studies.

  3. The depth of this is amazing! Soooo much better than the little kits we put together and shot off with no thought at all when I was in elementary school.


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