Aviation Education Program Celebrates 10th Year
TULSA, Oklahoma –February 12, 2013 – Without a doubt, children and airplanes go together like peanut butter and jelly. The minute a child sees an airplane soaring through the sky, the world stands still and they watch in amazement at the wonder of flight.
Throughout the past decade, Tulsa International Airport has harnessed that enthusiasm and curiosity and directed it towards an interactive educational experience for area students. In February 2003, the airport opened the Aviation Learning Center (ALC) as an additional component of the Aviation Education Program. Since its opening, more than 14,000 area children have taken a tour of the airport and traveled through the ALC.
The Aviation Learning Center is an interactive classroom where children mimic the travel process by boarding a mock Boeing 747, taking a virtual flight over Tulsa and viewing an in-flight video about aviation career opportunities. After exiting the aircraft, children get exposure to other aspects of aviation including weather, Bernoulli’s Principle and Air Traffic Control.
The ALC combines imaginative play with real-world lessons on science, technology and engineering. Teachers use the principles introduced on the tour when they return to the classroom, making the lessons relevant and engaging for students.
Tulsa International Airport Director, Jeff Mulder, is an advocate for the program and encourages area teachers to participate, “There are many opportunities for young people in Tulsa to pursue a career in the aviation and aerospace industry. Our tour program is often the first time students become acquainted with airport operations and our goal is to plant a seed that leads to future interest in the field.”