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Exciting Field Trip

Source: http://www.seenmagazine.us/Sections/ArticleDetail/tabid/79/Artic  View Original

December 21, 2010

Not just a draw for race fans, the NASCAR Hall of Fame is the perfect venue to demonstrate math and science lessons inherent to the sport. After all, the intricate mechanics and complex mathematics involved are as essential to NASCAR as the fast cars and famous drivers that captivate the masses. Endless possibilities at this engaging attraction connect racing with valuable learning experiences.

 

Proving that NASCAR’s past, present and future are as colorful as the sport’s logo-emblazoned stock cars, the 150,000 square foot NASCAR Hall of Fame boasts racing simulators, a pit crew challenge, a 278-seat Belk High Octane Theater, monumental memorabilia from the sport’s illustrious history, celebrated cars from famous drivers, and much more. Through direct connection with exhibits, artifacts, and interactive experiences, the NASCAR Hall of Fame provides a unique opportunity to demonstrate the principles like force and motion, friction, measurement and data analysis that allow stock cars to reach speeds of up to 180 m.p.h. on a closed track.

Teresa Robertson, Education Specialist at the NASCAR Hall of Fame, has created unique lesson packets, applicable for grades three to eight, to help teachers plan an educational trip to the Hall. Surrounded by pre- and post-visit activities, these lesson plans incorporate elements you won’t find anywhere else. Friction is explored through rubbings of various track surfaces along the expansive Glory Road exhibit, data analysis is taught through the graphing of the NASCAR point system, and measurement is demonstrated with the compass rose in the Great Hall. And that’s only the beginning.

The lesson packets are available to view at NASCARHall.com and feature activities based on specific areas of the facility, including Food Lion Race Week, Sunoco Glory Road, the Great Hall and Heritage Speedway. Teachers can contact staff for help creating an individualized lesson plan in addition to the ones already supplied. High school students can also gain a valuable learning experience through the Hall’s offerings, and curriculum is currently being developed to facilitate high school level programs.

Many school groups have already taken advantage of the educational benefits of visiting the NASCAR Hall of Fame. Charlotte-based Freedom School Partners, an organization that provides quality after-school and summer programs for children, visited the Hall this summer with a group of over 1,300.

“Our kids had a fantastic time at the NASCAR Hall of Fame,” said Angie Gover, Program Coordinator for Freedom School Partners. “For many of them, this was their first experience getting to know NASCAR. They especially loved learning about the pit crews. I think they were surprised what an intense job it is.”

Providing an interactive experience is at the core of the Halls’ programming goals. Hands-on activities are around every corner, inviting kids to try their hand at changing a tire or getting behind the wheel in the race car simulators. A vast array of exhibit pieces allows children to connect the dots between the technical side of NASCAR and how that translates into a first place finish.

The educational programming at the Hall of Fame primarily centers on science and math. Technology and engineering programs are being planned, with social studies lesson plans also a priority for future development. North Carolina’s rich history with NASCAR is displayed comprehensively through the Hall, providing limitless possibilities for lesson plans and programming on North Carolina history. The economic impact of racing and the technological advances in motorsports are also possible directions for future lessons.

Extensive meeting space is available for rental and expands the options for a field trip, with areas accommodating both large and small groups. The 278-seat Belk High Octane Theatre easily transitions for presentations with its state-of-the-art technological capabilities. The spacious Great Hall is an ideal setting for seated events and large groups, and additional spaces like the smaller Legends Room, perfect for groups of 75 to 117, and the vast alfresco 32,000 square foot Ceremonial Plaza are dynamic possibilities as well.

Beyond lesson plans, the NASCAR Hall looks forward to offering professional development courses for teachers, giving them a learning experience all their own. These courses will give teachers new tools to explain important science and math lessons, engaging their students in new and exciting ways.

Group tour pricing makes field trips easy on the wallet, with perks including express entry, designated convenient bus drop off, and a complimentary ticket for one teacher per 15 paid students. From kids to adults, racing novices to NASCAR super fans, there is something for everyone at the NASCAR Hall of Fame. Don’t miss the opportunity to take your class to the fast lane, using math and science for a more high-octane adventure.

For more information visit www.nascarhall.com.