Learning on table at Discovery Day Camp
The children stood at the ship's hull, paper airplanes in hand and ready to launch at the signal.
With an OK, they threw their planes off the side and watched as some sailed gracefully off the side.
Shouts erupted as they tried to figure out whose plane flew the farthest.
The activity was part of the Discovery Day Camp at Discovery Science Place in Tyler.
The camp, which continues today and Friday, is designed to provide parents a place to send their kids for the day, but also teach the participants a thing or two about science.
"They're curious kids, and they love science, and it's a great alternative to someone watching our children at home while my husband and I work," mother Tonya Hamlin, 45, of Tyler, said of the reason she sent her kids to the camp.
LaDawn Fletcher, director of development, said the hope is the children learn things during the camp, but don't realize it because they are having so much fun.
This is the first year Discovery Science Place is offering the Thanksgiving week Day Camp. Ms. Fletcher said they plan to have Parents Night Out events over the winter break.
On Monday, Anita Trevino-Leon and Anna Biesbrock led the students in activities.
For the first hour and a half the children explored the Discovery Science Place, creatively playing in the mock television set, a replica of a ship and a simulated cave. After some free play, the students moved into organized activities.
Each day, the camp will focus on a scientist, and the students will participate in activities related to that scientist.
Monday was Daniel Bernoulli, who came up with a principle in fluid dynamics that can be used to calculate lift forces on airplanes.
As a related project, the campers made paper airplanes using paper, straws and tape. They formed two different-sized rings with the paper and connected one ring to each end of the straw.
After decorating their planes and adding accessories, the girls took them to the deck of the replica ship and prepared them for the test flight.
In addition to Bernoulli, other scientists to be talked about this week include Leonardo da Vinci, who although best known for his artwork also did much in the area of scientific research, and Albert Einstein.
The camp costs $25 per day per child with each additional child receiving a $5 sibling discount. Visit www.discoveryscienceplace.org
for more information. To register, call 903-533-8011.