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Making Water Rockets at Iboru, Tanzania

Jun 10
2020
by Kai Staats

KaiStaatsTiT03012020A 600 

AWB Update - In March  Eliatosha Maleko, Astronomy Ambassador to MMAO and instructor at the Ilboru Primary School worked with his students to design, construct, and launch water rockets. Read about the fun and educational project in the following posts:

March 1, 2020  Eliatosha Maleko, Astronomy Ambassador to MMAO and instructor at the Ilboru Primary School. Established in 1950, Ilboru is uinque among the government schools in that it offers a special education unit students who have hearing disabilities, developmental delay disabilities, (hangamoto ya ufahamu), and tailoring to blind students. It is located in Arusha District, Ilboru ward. Every year the school enrolls new students to join from different level of education, such as kindergarten, Form One, etc. There are 1655 students and 40 teachers as of 2018.

Eliatosha offers the following update for his work with his students to build a water rocket program, “Hello Mr, Kai! I with my students are very happy to share little things with our fellows [across] the globe. Through visiting different websites and YouTube videos, I have met different friends all around, especially from Pakistan. What I have learned from all those people is how they managed to make water rocket project by using simple and few things that are not cost full compared to others.

Since we had started planning for this project we have few challenges, especially funding to buy [the required] connectors. Therefore with my students we started by gathering different things (as explained above) and we managed to do this! As you know that every thing we must be creative before doing it.

We managed to start to assembly and connecting some parts, especially bottles and rocket fins.

March 8, 2020 Saturday and Sunday saw the students of Ailanga engaged with Zacharia, Eliatosha, and Pandaeli in the design, construction, and launch of their first water rockets! This is the culmination of weeks of research, parts acquisition, and preparation.

While the students have designed far more sophisticated rockets, these first three launches test the launch pad, release mechanism, and launch vehicle. Already experiments are in motion to understand the physics and variables that define the altitude achieved: water to air ratio, mass of water, and pressure applied through the bicycle pump given the volume of the bottle.

For many of these students, this is their first hands-on, do-it-yourself experiment of any kind. At MMAO this is surely the first of many more to come!

March 10, 2020  Instructor and Astronomy Ambassador for MMAO Eliatosha Maleko writes, “For my school [this] was very, very fantastic because many students and teacher were amazed. From the beginning they didn’t know what was going on but later some of them were trying to guess [if] it is a boom. Later when I was trying to launch they realized that it was a rocket!

Second this project involves pupils from Standard 5 and 6 whereby they are about 10-14 years old. I decided to use pupils of this age because most of them the old enough to receive different instruction and old enough to participate in different creation activities, though all students are able to do that. Also for the lower classes they were observing and asking many questions about it.

Also I am happy that students [from] a nearby school were [also] here as it was the sports day and their teachers were amazed with this project. Therefore the project is very important to educational purposes due to the fact that it enhances curiosity and innovations to the students apart from receiving knowledge in the class room.

March 11, 2020  “I am very happy to share with you my final report of what I was planning to do with my students since last week, that we have managed to launch our water rocket yesterday but it was a day of trial and error. It helped us to identify our mistakes so that we can improve them. I know that this can make someone to blast with laughter but we are very happy as through practice make us to be perfect.

As per yesterday it can be seen that we use fins made of boxes that later we discovered that when [the rocket takes off] they get water and failed to properly well. But today we managed to change [the fins] and with very high speed like that of super jet speed!

Therefore since we started the project with my students they were very exited with it and always they asked me much questions, such as:

“Will it be possible to enter and insert a seat or chairs?”
“Does it mean that all rockets used the same water mechanism to fly?”
“What if a rocket fails to fly? Will there be any side effects to both animal and plant?”
“What are the necessary things to be adhered before launching?”

Also as it can seen on pics, those students with green pullover-sweater are those with special needs (both hearing and speaking), Albinism, and Intellectual Impermanent. For sure they enjoyed a lot as they can be seen trying to pump the water rocket. Not only that but also through the practice they have a message from their fellow students and intellectual world wide that even students people with disability they can do more and good things like others. Therefore we should stop the habit of despising [those who are challenged], telling them that they cannot.

Finally, Ilboru Primary school students say that through Astronomy we all can integrate and make be as one as we can be entertained, learn and show different talent that we have, you’re are all welcome to learn and enjoyed together. Thank you!” –Eliatosh Maleko, Instructor at Ilboro Primary School and Astronomy Ambassador for the Mt. Meru Astronomical Observatory.

View Kai's web blog page here to see more photos.

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    About Telescopes to Tanzania

    Telescopes to Tanzania (TtT) brings scarce educational resources to this developing country in east Africa. The emphasis now is on building the Centre for Science Education and Observatory in Usa River, Tanzania.

    Program Goals

    • Visit schools throughout Tanzania
    • Train teachers to teach hands-on, inquiry based science
    • Teach students
    • Train government education officers in understanding science teaching and scientific concepts
    • Bring more NEW science curricula to schools throughout Tanzania

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