Reading, writing and reciprocating engines are all on the lesson plan at McKinney High School, where the school’s aviation program teaches kids about the science behind taking flight.
Students are making mini versions of an aircraft engine out of soda cans, learning more about how the technology works and how it keeps planes in the air.
Thomas Zimmerly, a student at the school, said he couldn’t wait to sign up. "I’m very interested in planes, and my uncle is a pilot, and that’s what I wanted to do for a while," Zimmerly said.
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Nathan McAfee has been teaching the students the basics and helping them see how aviation is about much more than flying planes. "For every one person that flies there’s going to be 30 different career jobs supporting them," McAfee said.
The classes connect with some of the ROTC offerings. Other classes help the students learn and understand maps and charting.
"They learn something and the type of thinking they do in here will apply to just about anything they do," McAfee said.
If they have the desire, McKinney’s aviation program will eventually allow the students to take flight and even build an plane.