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Liftoff! LCSD Holds Second Annual Rocket Challenge
Tuesday, June 14, 2016
Members of the Elmcrest Elementary Rocket Club gathered around the launch button and excitedly started to count backward from 10.
When they finally pressed the button, their rocket took off like a shot and was soon hard to spot in the sky. A few moments later, their rocket was heading back to Earth with its parachute deployed. It landed softly in the weeds next to Willow Field Elementary.
For 20 minutes, the fifth-graders (and eventually a few parents) searched for their rocket. Without it, the students would not know how high it went or if their Eggstronaut passenger survived its landing.
Their hard work (and wet shoes) paid off as the EE Rocket Club was named the winner of this year’s Liverpool Central School District Rocket Challenge. LCSD students, family members and teachers recently gathered at WFE to participate in the second annual event.
Rocket teams from all nine LCSD elementary schools gathered at the WFE soccer fields to determine which school had the best Graduator rocket.
Each team was asked to build their own rocket with room for an Eggstronaut, and teams used a variety of materials to protect the egg when it landed, including insulation, bubble wrap and plastic bottles.
Representatives from the Syracuse Rocket Club joined the students and launched the rockets from the club’s rail launcher. Each team of fifth-graders had a chance to push the official launch button.
This year’s event had a new spin. Two judges – Executive Director for Elementary Education Steven Garraffo and Director of Staff Services Anthony Davis – had the task of evaluating the rockets on three factors – design, peak altitude and Eggstronaut survival. Schools were awarded points for each, and the winning school - EE - will play host to the rocket challenge trophy until next year’s event.
The goal of the LCSD Rocket Challenge was to spark an interest in rocket science for LCSD fifth-grade students.