Makaya Mitchell launches her rocket under the instruction of Vic Clark.

Makaya Mitchell launches her rocket under the instruction of Vic Clark.

Poplar Bluff Junior High students concluded their unit on the scientific method with a rocket launch on Thursday, Oct. 27, at Fred M. Morrow Stadium.

Rocket Day was founded several years ago by retired science teacher Vic Clark, who still returns for the occasion to help operate his homemade compressed air launcher. Eighth graders later make qualitative and quantitative observations about the data.

Prior to the event this year, students watched “October Sky,” which was inspired by Homer Hickam Jr., a NASA engineer, who actually wrote a personal letter to the class after teacher Ashley Woolard connected with him via Twitter.

“Best wishes to you and remember, if you never have dreams, they never come true. Aim high,” Hickam stated and included an autographed self-portrait, which he addressed to Poplar Bluff Schools.

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Tim Krakowiak Communications/Marketing Coordinator Poplar Bluff R-I School District 573-785-1021, ext. 137 www.poplarbluffschools.net/news-bureau/