It's not rocket science -- well, actually, it is.
Delaware Hayes High School students enrolled in the History of Flight course had a chance to put their classroom knowledge to use last week by assembling and launching their own rockets.
This elective course is part of the Air Force Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps program at the school.
The program is a character and citizenship development program focused on studying aviation, team-building and citizenship skills.
Students who take the course learn the science and physics of aviation and space flight.
Freshmen and sophomore students were put in teams of two or three and given a rocket kit. They had three days to construct the foot-tall rockets.
Instructor Lt. Col. Russ Anible said these types of activities go hand in hand with the Cognitive, Affective and Psychomotor Domain learning module.
"They receive the facts and the knowledge, and the hands-on activities reinforce what they've learned -- and as they work in the teams, they are learning important citizenship skills," Anible said.
Plus, he said, launching the rockets is "just plain fun."
"This is valuable hands-on reinforcement of scientific principles. We even have the students check each other's work," Anible said.
Although the program was developed by the Air Force, it is not only for students interested in joining the armed forces. Only 5 percent to 10 percent of students who go through the program choose to enter the armed forces, Anible said.
Other electives available as part of the program include the Science of Flight, Space Exploration, Global Cultural Studies and Survival Skills.
The courses are available to students in the Delaware, Big Walnut, Olentangy and Buckeye Valley school districts.
"We have many students from other school districts enrolled in this program," Anible said. "Olentangy students are bused here in the mornings for their first-period course."
Students in the program put in more than 3,000 hours of community service this year.
"Our students are learning the role they play in their community," Anible said. "They are volunteering and learning about the importance of voting. We want them to develop good citizenship attitudes."
Anible has been teaching the course at Hayes for 10 years since retiring from the Air Force after 25 years of service.
"I was in active duty as a transportation officer and as part of the faculty at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base," he said. "Teaching at Hayes is by far the most-rewarding thing I've ever done."