Saturday, July 2, 2011

Rocket Camp!

I decided to run a Rocketry Camp this summer for the first time in TWELVE YEARS!  It was a lot of work, but lots of fun.  A special thanks to my volunteer middle-school helpers, Zach and Adam, and a big hug to my assistant, Dana. I couldn't have done it without you!

All reviews from parents and campers were AWESOME!  Would you like to run a rocketry camp?  If you have some experience with rocket building and launch, give it a try!   This is the agenda I put together for my camp along with many links to resources that I used.

Rocketry Camp Agenda  June 27-July 1  Blast Off!  click here to view in google docs

Monday, June 27
  • Aero Rocket construction—rocket kits, tacky glue, sandpaper, scissors, pencils, white pencils, xacto knives.  Then, leave to dry.
  • Alka Seltzer Rocket construction and launch (inside)—film canisters, paper, notecards, tape, scissors, Alka Seltzer tablets, copies of the 1-2-3 Pop! worksheet from the Educator’s Guide
Tuesday, June 28
  • Photos of campers with Rockets--camera
  • Aero Rocket Loading and Launch—engines, charge batteries, recovery wadding, igniters, launch pads, heat glue guns for emergency repairs
  • 9:30 Snack
  • Begin Alpha construction—rocket kits, tacky glue/containers, sandpaper, pencils, scissors, rulers, exacto knife (teacher/assistant only)
11:30-1:00 Lunch and Outside Playtime—print out photos from AM
  • 30 minutes of I Love Rockets movie
  • Astronaut/Egg Drop construction—recyclables, masking tape, rubber bands, aluminum foil, eggs, scissors, string, bubble wrap, cereal boxes, etc.  Each person can “shop” for 5 items ONLY (it’s like having a budget--NASA has one, too!)
  • Astronaut Egg Drop—bring a trash bag to pick up the stuff.
  Wednesday, June 29
  • Straw Rocket Construction and Target Practice
  • Snack and outside playtime
  • Continue Alpha Construction
11:30-1:00 Lunch and Outside Playtime
Thursday, June 30  
  • Finish Bottle rockets-launch
  • Snack
  • Painting Alpha Rockets—first coat--safety goggles and masks; spray paint and sheets of newspaper.  The newspaper is rolled up into a long narrow cone to insert into the engine mount of the rocket--a handle for spraypainting!
  • Astronaut craft--on large paper, trace each student in whatever position, then use craft materials to decorate a flight suit or space suit.  Glue, tissue paper, markers, scissors, and craft materials like paint, ribbons, foil, etc.
11:30-1:00 Lunch and Outside Playtime
  • Astronaut/Egg Drop II—The Rematch!!!!--in teams this time, and they can use 7 items instead of 5 items.
  • snack
  • Painting Alphas—masking and second coat of spray paint--masking tape
Friday, July 1
  • Photos of campers with their rockets--camera
  • Alpha Loading and Launch
  • Outdoor Playtime (we’re already outside)
  • Build a Launch Tower Activity--photos of launch towers that use triangles to support, 1 bag of mini marshmallows per team, large paper (for workspace) and at least one box of toothpicks per team (older kids will work faster and therefore need more)
11:30-1:00 Lunch and Outside Playtime
  • Alpha Reloading and Relaunch
  • Group Photos
  • Balloon cars--see the NASA Educator’s Guide
Other activities in case you have more time:
These have a Buzz Lightyear theme, but you can find them without the Buzz pictures if you like.
1. Load the Shuttle Activity
  1. Toys in Space Activity
  1. Putting it all together
Favorite Movies to show while we are constructing anything (depending on the age group):
Muppets in Space
Space Jam
Bugs Bunny/Marvin Martian episodes
Star Wars
Apollo 13 (older kids--some language)
October Sky (older kids--some language)


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