Thursday, June 14, 2012

Uncle Reuben's Journeys Part 6 - The Biplane

The chain reached out into the hallway.Keeping the students busy wasn’t too difficult. A group of boys made a chain of colored links the length of the wingspan on the biplane Uncle Reuben learned to fly in 1924. I thought for sure our room would be big enough but once we looked up the size on the internet and the boys got out the measuring wheel, they (and their teacher) realized it wasn’t going to be that easy. Before long, the door was open and the chain was reaching diagonally across the room, out the door and halfway across the hall.

A student is working with the measuring wheel.

They measured, added or subtracted links, and measured again until they were certain the chain was exactly 43 feet and 7 inches.

One concept they learned by doing this is that the chain measured the same if it was straight or curled around the desks.

 A second chain was constructed and measured for the length of the plane (27 feet).

We weren't going to be able to experience the size of the plane in our room so we carried the chains to the courtyard and put them in place.
 The kids and one of their favorite co-op students took their places on the chains and posed for a picture.
Students forming shape of biplane in courtyard.

Note: If you try this yourself, remember that the chain tangles easily and needs to be carried stretched out instead of bunched up. We learned the hard way!

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