Where Do Airplanes Come From?

If you were inventing an airplane, what would it look like? What materials would you use? What job would your airplane have? Our Aircraft Inventor’s Tour gets kids looking at airplanes from the perspective of the men and women who built them. After a short re-fuelling break (snack time!), your class will enter our Inventor’s Workshop, where they will try their hand at meeting our Inventor’s Challenge!

Grade 1
Science and Technology
$5.00 per student (minimum fee of $100)
Group size
Max. 25 students
Minimum of 6 adult chaperones per group (free)
Two groups concurrently
100 minutes (includes snack time)

Program Description

The program begins with a 40-minute interactive tour filled with open-ended questions, offering students an opportunity to share their observations and ask their own questions. At each stop, students will have an opportunity to touch various materials and discuss how the choice of materials affects what the aircraft is capable of doing.

Time for a short snack break is included in the schedule so that everyone will be fresh and ready for the Inventor’s Workshop. You can either have students bring their own snacks, or order from our catering service at an additional cost.

In our Inventor’s Workshop, the class will be divided into small groups. Each group will be given a variety of materials from which to build their own model aircraft, in order to meet the challenge given to them by the Museum’s educator. Parent chaperones are required to assist each group in discussing the properties of the materials they’ve been given, while also facilitating group dynamics at each table.

The program ends with the awarding of certificates of achievement for all students. Each student will also leave with a template to build a paper aircraft model of their own at home or in class.

Curriculum Links

Science and Technology

Understanding Structures and Mechanisms: Materials, Objects, and Everyday Structures

2. Developing Investigation and Communication Skills

Use technological problem-solving skills and knowledge acquired from previous investigation, to design, build, and test a structure for a specific purpose.

3. Understanding Basic Concepts

Describe structures as supporting frameworks.
Describe the function/purpose of the observable characteristics of various objects and structures, using information gathered through their senses.
Identify the materials that make up objects and structures.
Distinguish between objects and materials found in nature and those made by humans.
Describe the properties of materials that enable the objects and structures made from them to perform their intended function.
Identify the sources in nature of some common materials that are used in making structures.

Source Document: The Ontario Curriculum, Grades 1–8: Science and Technology, 2007

Teacher Tips

Remember: to help plan your trip, teachers are entitled to a free pass. Please call our reservation office to request yours today!

To get the most out of your experience, we recommend that you arrange your bus schedule so that you can spend 2–2 ½ hours at the Museum. This will give you an opportunity to visit more of the collection on your own, take health breaks, enjoy snacks or lunches, visit the boutique, etc.

Remember to bring a large bag or bags to carry home your class’s creations, and a camera to document the fun!

Staying for lunch? Please ask our reservation office about table/lunchroom availability, as well as our catering service.

Pre-Visit Activity Suggestions

Download the Activity Kit PDF

The Canada Aviation and Space Museum’s Student Activity Kit has multi-age activities that can be easily modified to suit your class. Download Activity Kit and consider trying the activities below.

Page 17: Connect the Dots
Practice the alphabet with your class and create a picture of a passenger jet to colour.

Page 19: The Main Parts of an Airplane
Introduce your class to some basic aviation vocabulary by colouring different parts of the aircraft. We suggest removing some of the aircraft parts listed on the master document, in order to focus on simpler pieces such as the fuselage, landing gear, propeller and wings.

Page 22: Parts that Control Airplane Movement
Talk about the three main control surfaces, and colour each part of the aircraft a different colour. The fill-in-the-blanks section can be easily removed for simplification, or could be used for exceptional students with advanced reading/writing skills.

Pages 24–26: The Memory Game
Give the class a sneak peek at the Museum by letting them play our memory game. All 16 aircraft in the game are part of our collection, and some will be featured in the Aircraft Inventor’s Tour.

Fees and Reservations

Make a Reservation

Please make your reservation at least three weeks in advance by calling 613-993-4264 or click on the Reserve button to fill out an online reservation request. Please allow a minimum of 48 hours for our response.

Program fees are per person and include taxes. All accompanying adults per group are admitted free. Payment may be made in advance or on arrival by cash, credit card, debit, or cheque made payable to the Canada Aviation and Space Museum.

Program Per student* Minimum Fee

*Please note that all prices are subject to change without notice.

Where Do Airplanes Come From? $5.00 $100

Cancellation Fees

A cancellation fee of $80 per school program will be charged for cancellations made less than 48 hours before the scheduled date of the program. For a program cancelled with more than 48 hours notice, a $20 administration fee will apply, unless the program is rescheduled within the same school year. In the case of school bus cancellation due to inclement weather, this fee will not apply if a school reschedules the cancelled program within the same school year.