Students at Dunsmuir Middle School launch a student-built rocket at the Allandale Pit Monday afternoon. The class launched two rockets that reached 2,500 and 3,000 feet high and peak speeds of roughly 1,200 kilometres an hour, before eventually crashing down to the ground. (Kendra Wong/News Gazette staff)

Dunsmuir students get out-of-this-world experience

Grade 7s launch rockets, reaching speeds of 1,200 km/hr

On a cloudy Monday afternoon, students from Dunsmuir Middle School gathered at Allandale Pit to see something many had never witnessed before — the launch of a rocket.

The Grade 7 students were not disappointed after the two G-motor rockets launched 2,500 and 3,000 feet into the air, reaching peak speeds of roughly 1,200 kilometres an hour, before eventually crashing down to the ground.

“It was very cool,” said 12-year-old Paige Brahan after the launch. “I learned that making rockets is very hard, but it’s worth the time and all the building. It was amazing.”

Dunsmuir Middle School teacher Jordan Whyte prepares the student-built rocket for launch at the Allandale Pit afternoon. The class launched two rockets that reached 2,500 and 3,000 feet high and peak speeds of roughly 1,200 kilometres an hour, before eventually crashing down to the ground. (Kendra Wong/News Gazette staff)

The launch was part of the middle school’s hands-on Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Tech ed unit on the aerodynamics of flight.

For the last several weeks, 14 students started with the basics, learning about the theory of what goes on inside a rocket, and how propulsion, drag and lift works, among other things.

Next, students made individual rockets out of reinforced cardboard with a poxy coat, and learned how to sand and cut rocket fins to help it stay together during the launch.

According to teacher Jordan Whyte, who has been running the rocket launch part of the program for the past two years, the class is a great learning experience and teaches students the application of theory to design.

“They applied their theory to an actual working model and then lit it off and saw their creations come to life, and I think making that jump between the theory and the hands-on application … is absolutely critical,” said Whyte, noting launching a rocket is not an activity many schools in the province offer.

“The more we do this, the more everything we do in the classroom starts making sense. Why do we do math? Why do we do science? It’s so we can come into a room like a shop room and we can actually build something like that … They’ll never forget something like this.”


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

kendra.wong@goldstreamgazette.com

Just Posted

B.C. needs Disability Act: Victoria council

Council motion asks province to make B.C. barrier free

Council votes no to changing how residents pay sewer debt costs

After a reconsideration, council votes down motion to move portion of debt costs to tax bill

Dance Victoria Nutcracker contest returns to Oak Bay village

Find Mr. Nutcracker and Tommy Tempo now through Nov. 26 for chacne to win ballet tickets

Oak Bay light up steeped in tradition

Nov. 26 event kicks off Christmas in Oak Bay

Sailors set to deck the hulls for annual Sea of Lights

Lighted sail past set for Dec. 1 with community events at vantage points Willows Beach and Gyro Park

100,000 bulbs shine bright for Lights of Hope

St. Paul’s Hospital in Vancouver launched its annual campaign to raise funds for equipment, research

‘I will now live in consistent fear’: Allan Schoenborn granted escorted leaves

The Merritt man was deemed not criminally responsible in the killing of his three children in 2008

Hammy the deer dodges conservation officers in Prince Rupert

The famous Prince Rupert hammock deer maintains his purple threads

‘No shirt, no service, no Canada’

Shirtless Tacoma man arrested after Canadian border officials say they found meth in rental vehicle

Weekend hit list: Things to do in Greater Victoria

FRIDAY Find Mr. Nutcracker and his cousin Tommy Tempo as they visit… Continue reading

Uptown’s Christmas Tree Light Up is Saturday night

Uptown assembling 54-foot-tall tree for fifth annual Light Up

Nasty note on B.C. windshield sparks online outrage

Vernon’s Bailey McDonald is using a painful experience to start conversation about invisible illness

Port Alberni resident robbed with weapon, thieves steal thousands

Most of the stolen currency is in Canadian $100 bills. The police investigation is ongoing.

Federal funding to combat guns, gangs and opioid crisis

Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale said illicit drugs are often main cause of guns, gangs violence

Most Read