Engineering Seltzer Rockets: A Simple, Low-Cost, and Engaging Way to Develop NGSS Practices

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This article describes a simple and low-cost method that allows even young children to explore and improve the propulsion of legitimate rockets. Using film canisters that are launched indoors with effervescent tablets, students also develop science and engineering practices in the Next Generation Science Standards, including planning and carrying out investigations; analyzing and interpreting data; obtaining, evaluating and communicating information; and engaging in argument from evidence. The article describes the materials, performance, and science of seltzer rockets. It also provides specific suggestions for engaging students and scaffolding their investigations of seltzer rockets; for supporting students in gathering and analyzing data, making evidence-based claims, and communicating results; and for assessing students’ work. Although this article describes a version of the seltzer rocket activity appropriate for middle school, it can be easily modified to suit early elementary through high school students. It can also be used as a vehicle for learning a variety of important concepts, and ideas for extensions are included in an online supplement.
Original languageEnglish
JournalScience Scope, National Science Teachers Association
StateAccepted/In press - 1800


Dive into the research topics of 'Engineering Seltzer Rockets: A Simple, Low-Cost, and Engaging Way to Develop NGSS Practices'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this