MCMA’s STEM Club learn how man conquered the skies

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21/05/2014 by sleach860

Ever wondered how the Wright brothers pioneered human flight? Well this is what the STEM club got to find out in a special workshop called “Winging it” run by Manchester University’s Nick Bojdo. The activity started with an introduction to the concepts involved in flight; outlining the scientific principles along with a brief history of developments.

The group then investigated wing shapes and used a wind tunnel to demonstrate lift.

The pupils went on to investigate the ways in which objects could glide successfully depending on the way weight was distributed.

A great competitive activity to build the best gliding “wing” from sheets of foam and steel washers followed. The shape was irrelevant, what mattered was where you placed the “centre of lift” by positioning the washers in different positions.

After many trials pupils settled on their final designs and a competition was held to see which model would fly the furthest.

The activity was great fun and lots of interest was generated!

The workshop was part of the School University Partnership Initiative (SUPI). More details can be found at:



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