Up, up and away!

By Bob Hallmark - bio - email

Posted by Ellen Krafve - email

MINEOLA, TX (KLTV) - Their mission? To find a way of getting air-born. The trick? No engines allowed.

It turns out, it wasn't much of a problem for some East Texas students who flexed their science and engineering muscles for a class project.

Using tissue paper and glue sticks, Mineola 6th graders constructed different designs to take maximum advantage of heated air.

"The fun part is you get to pick out all the colors the design of how you want to make the hot air balloon what you want it to look like so you get to choose everything," said 11 year old Hannah Mason.

The problem is air...and being light enough and having enough power to move through it.

"Understanding how wind is formed how when air is heated it rises and cooled it falls back down," said Susan Witt, a Mineola Middle School science teacher.

But, the kids have a good grasp on what it takes.

"By filling the hot air balloon with hot air its surrounded by cold air which causes it to rise up which makes the balloon take off," explained Hannah.

"We did ours at an angle most of them did theirs straight," said Scott McCartney, a 6th grader.

It also gave the kids a chance to...

"Come outside get some fresh air instead of being in there doing textbook work," said Scott.

Some flew while others...well...crashed!

"I think if they get the concept that the reason why their balloon flew was because it had less dense air in it because we heated it then I'm good with that," said Susan.

"It's just fun watching it take off that you actually created a hot air balloon and that you've learned something," said Hannah.

The kids got an "A" for the project no matter how well their balloon performed.