Recommended Grades: 4th-12th
The Challenge: Build a walkalong glider and see how long you can fly it.
- 1 piece of lightweight paper – wrapping paper, newspaper, phone book page, aluminum foil, printer or notebook paper (the lighter, the better)
- 1 of the following – a flattened cardboard box, foam core board, cereal box (the bigger, the better)
Instructions: Watch the video below for easy-to-follow instructions. Instructions and a template can be downloaded and printed with these two links: Walkalong Glider in English and Walkalong Glider En Español
How does this activity connect to STEM?
This activity allows students to see airfoils in action. Today, many of the things that you buy in stores are transported by airplanes, which use similar principles of flight to these gliders. Aerospace engineers work hard to design airplanes to transport people and goods as cheaply and efficiently as possible. By experimenting with different materials and methods, students can get the first-hand experience tackling challenges that aerospace engineers face on a daily basis.
Activity extension: If you enjoyed this activity, try a TAME engineering design challenge and build a stunt plane.
Check out this six-minute video showing how to build a walkalong glider, and watch it in flight.
Watch the video above for instructions to create the TAME Tumblewing Walkalong Glider. Get the experience of piloting an aircraft without leaving your house. A walkalong glider flies on a wave of air created by pushing a piece of cardboard as you walk. TAME shares simple instructions to help you create your own glider very easily using common household items.
Ivan Lopez’ Story
Glider Science & Aerospace Goals
Ivan Lopez, TAME Intern and Aerospace Engineering major, breaks down the science behind the walkalong glider, then talks about his love for STEM and gives tips for students who want to follow in his footsteps.
Ivan is a junior studying at the Cockrell School of Engineering at The University of Texas at Austin. Explore the Department of Aerospace Engineering and the degree plan Ivan is pursuing. It’s the #7 Undergraduate Aerospace Engineering Program in the nation and offers diverse career prospects with average starting salaries of $70K.
Of course, Ivan didn’t know anything about degree plans when he fell in love with rockets and airplanes at age three. Check out his story to learn more!
Download Ivan’s notes featured in the video and follow along as he explains his equations.
Texas Alliance for Minorities in Engineering
Since 1976, TAME has worked to encourage the participation of women and minorities in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) careers through innovative, hands-on science programming for K-12 students across Texas. We offer age-specific programs to spark and support student interest in STEM, professional development and curriculum ideas for teachers, and locally relevant events to educate families and communities about opportunities in STEM.
Check out what TAME’s offering to help Texas students and educators connect to STEM resources. Registration is free and open throughout the school year, with deadlines in the fall to be eligible for toolkits, funding, and free STEM Competitions!
You don’t need to be a teacher, librarian, or STEM professional to register a TAME Club. You only need an adult, 6 students in grades K-12, and to meet regularly in person or virtually to do something (anything!) STEM-related.
- Free K-12 STEM Clubs
- Club Toolkits & funding
- Virtual & in-person meetings
- Flexible schedule
- STEM role model virtual visits
Our STEM clubs can be virtual or in-person, and you can set your own schedule. Meet weekly, monthly, a couple times a semester. TAME Clubs are 100% free and flexible to your school, community group, and unique needs.
Register today: https://www.tame.org/club
Additional Resources: www.tame.org/resources