You have to wonder about the engineering design advantages of a P-47 Thunderbolt airplane when WWII pilot Archie Maltbie recalls, “I flew the P-47 Thunderbolt in the 365th (Hellhawk) Fighter Group . . . and I know without doubt that I owe my life to [it].”
When the schedule leading up to holiday break becomes unpredictable, engage students in P-47 and the Turbo Supercharger—one of 10 posted videos in the Chronicles of Courage series. The 20-video series from the partnership of NBC Learn and Flying Heritage Collection uses the collection’s WWII airplanes and aviation technology as their focal point.
P-47 and the Turbo Supercharger delves into how this particular plane’s engine was designed to utilize exhaust gases to force more air into the engine, and thus increase the engine’s power. Boosting engine performance at both high and low altitudes gave the P-47 its advantage.
The companion NSTA-developed lesson plans give you a lot of ideas for how to use the videos as a centerpiece, or simply incorporate them into what you already do. Look through the lesson plans and adapt the parts most useful to you. We all know that everyone’s situation is just a bit different, so download the Word doc and modify at will to make it your own. After you give them a try with your students, let us know what you think! Suggestions for improvements are always welcome. Just leave a comment and we’ll get in touch with you.
Chronicles of Courage: Stories of Wartime and Innovation “P-47 and the Turbo Supercharger” focuses on the P-47 Thunderbolt and the mission for which it had been specifically designed—power at high altitudes.
STEM Lesson Plan—Adaptable for Grades 7–12
Chronicles of Courage: Stories of Wartime and Innovation “P-47 and the Turbo Supercharger” provides strategies for developing Science and Engineering Practices and support for building science literacy through reading and writing.