Educator Resources: Aviation and Aerospace

These resources assist educators by providing aviation-focused standards-based curriculum resources, lesson plans, and additional materials. Additional information also is available under Student Resources and Youth Programs.

  • Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA) – High School Initiative
    AOPA’s High School Initiative is helping to build and sustain high school aviation programs and to provide flight training opportunities to students. AOPA is developing a 4-year aviation curriculum for 3 career pathways (pilot, unmanned aircraft systems (UAS or drone), and aeronautical engineering) that will be available for free to high schools. Educators are invited to participate in development/field testing of the new curriculum.

  • Academy of Model Aeronautics (AMA) – AMA Flight School
    The AMA website includes an Educator Toolkit section and Programs/Activities focused on aviation and flight. The Programs section includes information on hosting your own model aviation day camp with flight activities and videos that could be used in the classroom or during summer events. The site also includes STEM and DIY/education activities can be filtered by age.

  • American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics
    The American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) STEM programs offer resources and programming to teachers interested in aerospace. The website offers Aerospace Micro-Lessons ranging from engineering to mathematics to physics. Additional resources for educators include:
    • Free Educator Associate membership to connect with other professionals
    • Access to the Educator Academy – a standards based, hands-on program to involve students in solving real world problems
    • Small classroom grants to support aerospace projects and Educator Achievement Awards

  • Build A Plane
    Build a Plane is a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting aviation and aerospace by giving young people the opportunity to build real airplanes and rockets. Build A Plane works with educators and other interested in establishing a program and provides resources to facilitate the projects.

  • Challenger Center for Space Science Education
    The Challenger Center offers hands-on simulation experiences and aerospace activities at their locations around the world. The organization’s website provides a number of aerospace-focused STEM Resources for educators with videos, lesson plans, and supporting materials for download.

  • Civil Air Patrol – Aerospace Education Program
    Educators may become Aerospace Education Members of the Civil Air Patrol and access extensive educational resources ranging from lesson plans and activities to participation in an orientation flight aboard a Cessna aircraft. Some curricular materials are available for free download while a full membership for a one-time fee of $35 will grant access to a free STEM Kit, over 30 standards-based aerospace education materials, additional programming, and eligibility to apply for small classroom grants for aerospace projects.

  • Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) – Educator Resources
    The FAA’s Education page provides teachers with a list of aviation-focused activities and experiments for the classroom. Most of the activities and downloadable curriculum ideas can be found under the Activities and Classroom Curriculum links. The page also lists aviation programs and grant and scholarship opportunities.

  • National Coalition for Aviation and Space Education (NCASE)
    NCASE’s website provides a clearinghouse of educator resources from a variety of organizations. The Activities/Events section lists educator conferences, while the NCASE guide lists materials available through partners. NCASE also collaborates with State Aviation Journal to publish the quarterly journal, AvEd Magazine.

  • NASA for Educators
    NASA for Educators provides numerous teaching materials and multi-media classroom resources for grades K-4, 5-8 and 9-12. Educators may sign up for weekly education emails that include links to frequent free webinars on space-related topics. The site also has information about NASA’s current programming opportunities for teachers, including programs to work with NASA scientists.

  • PBS Learning Media – WI Media Lab
    PBS Learning Media offers standards-aligned digital resources that can be filtered by grade level and include lesson plans. The Aerospace Engineering Collection is a compilation of video and interactive media resources on the Mechanics of Flight, History and Future of Aviation, and other topics.

  • Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum
    The Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum’s educator web page contains activities and resources for lesson planning, including full lesson plans on various topics in aviation and astronautics. It also offers electronic field trips for classes and hosts videoconferencing events. The site includes information about a variety of workshops offering teachers professional development opportunities.

  • Wisconsin Space Grant Consortium
    The Wisconsin Space Grant Consortium funds programs for educators to develop curriculum and programs related to aerospace, including programs aimed at increasing the representation of underserved communities in aerospace.