National Aviation Day
National Aviation Day: August 19 – Free Homeschool Resources
This special day was created by a presidential proclamation by U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1939.
Whether or not you can use the study on August 19th – the homeschool lessons and study opportunities posed by the topic of aviation are practically endless. You can use the topic of aviation to inspire all sorts of learning projects.
Use the theme to inspire some fun math, writing, science, history, reading and more! We have quite a few resources gathered to get you started with this fun unit, but remember – the sky is no longer the limit!
Video – Wright Brothers First Flight
For almost 3000 years, mankind has had a known history with a love and desire for aviation.
- 1783 – Montgolfier Brothers construct the first lighter-than-air vehicle (a balloon)
- 1900 – Count Ferdinand Zeppelin’s airship flies
- 1903 – Orville and Wilbur Wright fly first successful self-propelled airplane
- 1909 – Louis Bleriot crosses English Channel in a monoplane
- 1909 – Raymonde de Laroche becomes the first licensed female pilot
- 1913 – Salim Ilkucan crosses Sea of Marmara by achieving the longest over-sea flight in a doubleplane
- 1914-1918 -World War 1
- 1918 – United States Post Office establishes airmail service
- 1926 Robert H. Goddard makes first free flight of a liquid-fueled rocket.
- 1927 Charles A. Lindbergh completes first solo, nonstop trans-Atlantic flight.
- 1930 Frank Whittle, British inventor, invents the jet engine.
- 1932 Amelia Earhart is the first woman to fly a solo non-stop trans-Atlantic flight.
- 1933 A modern airliner, Boeing 247, flies for the first time.
- 1939 Germany’s Heinkel 178 is the first fully jet-propelled aircraft to fly.
- 1947 Charles E. Yeager pilots Bell X-1–the first aircraft to exceed the speed of sound in level flight.
- 1957 Soviet Union launches first man-made earth satellite, Sputnik 1.
- 1961 Soviet cosmonaut, Yuri Gagarin, is the first man in space.
- 1962 John H. Glenn, Jr., is the first American to orbit the earth.
- 1969 U.S. astronauts Neil A. Armstrong and Edwin E. Aldrin, Jr., are the first to walk on the moon.
- 1971 First space station, Soviet Salyut 1, is launched into earth’s orbit.
- 1981 U.S. launches the first reusable spacecraft, the Columbia shuttle.
- 1998 First two modules of the International Space Station are launched and joined together in orbit.
- 2000 First crew arrives to take up residence in the International Space Station.
- 2003 A century of flight arrives.
History Project Ideas
Choose one or two of your favorite topics from the list above to do further research. Find a video, get books from the library, look up a movie on Netflix, look up information in an encyclopedia, fill out notebooking page or journal the information.
Construct a model of one or more of your favorite projects from the above list.
Ancient History and Geography
The Chinese invented the first kite in c.1000 B.C.
Tales of the Greek, Roman and Norse (false) gods contain stories which can trace aviation history all the way back to the Greek named Icarus who was imprisoned, by King Minos on the island of Crete, with his father Daedalus.
Daedalus fashioned a pair of wax wings for himself and Icarus. Before they took off from the island, Daedalus warned his son not to fly too close to the sun, nor too close to the sea.
Icarus, excited by the feeling that flying gave him, soared blissfully through the sky. In the process he came too close to the sun, which melted his wings. Icarus flapped and flapped but soon realized that he had no feathers left and that he was only flapping his bare arms. He fell into the sea in the area which bears his name, the Icarian Sea near Icaria, an island southwest of Samos.
Hands on Learning – History & Geography
Get out your globe, map or atlas and look up the areas mentioned. You might want to make a note of China on the continent of Asia while you are looking and remind students that the first known kite came from that area.
Have students find Italy (the boot) on the world map. If you have a class map, put a pin in it! Now, look for the Island of Crete. It lies approximately 99 miles south of the Greek mainland.
Crete has a significant role in the economy and cultural heritage of Greece. It also retains its own local cultural traits with local poetry, music and art.
It is historically significant as well. It was once the center of the Minoan civilization (c. 2700–1420 BC), which is currently regarded as the earliest recorded civilization in Europe.
Can you see those places on the map?
Use the FREE printable map & notebooking pages included in this lesson to have students label their own map with these locations.
Additional pages include the lesson from above and an art project for hands on learning. There are 12 total pages in this mini-unit study.
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