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A Day at the Races: Sacred Heart's Pinewood D'ASH
Peggy Armstrong, Middle School Math & Academic Games

Middle School math teacher, Peggy Armstrong, created an exciting project for 5th grade students to promote their knowledge and interest in Math and Engineering ... a.k.a., the Pinewood Derby D'ASH at Sacred Heart.

pinewood d'ash races at sacred heart 2022

Collaborating with our Innovation Lab, Art, and Physics departments, Mrs. Armstrong ensured each student learned the skills needed to build her own model race car to compete in our second Pinewood D'ASH (Derby of the Academy of Sacred Heart.)

pinewood d'ash races at sacred heart 2022

The students' efforts were put to the test on April 29, 2022, before an enthusiastic audience of students, parents, and special guests. With the help of Mr. Donald Cannatella and his crew, all of whom are organizers of the Cub Scouts of America's Pinewood Derby, our "Day at the Races" was a huge success. Each student raced in four heats, followed by the top ten fastest cars racing in the second round of four heats to determine whose was the fastest car.

pinewood d'ash races at sacred heart 2022

Congratulations go to Avery R '29 for the overall fastest car (left picture holding trophy), with an average scale speed of 219.28 mph. The winner for Design and Creativity was awarded to Olivia C '29 (right picture holding trophy).  

Top 10 Fastest Cars

pinewood d'ash races at sacred heart 2022

View All Race Pictures >

pinewood d'ash races at sacred heart 2022

 

Life Cycle of a Pinewood D'ASH Car

Each of the girls began this project with a block of wood and a list of car specifications to comply with throughout the design and construction of their individual cars.

Math and Science: Ideation, design, engineering, and assembly, the students applied real-life math and science skills to meet the required specifications and requirements to construct their cars in preparation for Race Day. 

Innovation Lab: Working with Innovation Lab experts, Kitty Mattesky and Leigh Damaré, students were able to take their designs and bring to life their cars using a variety of saw and sanding materials.

pinewood d'ash races at sacred heart 2022

Art: Under the guidance of Middle School art teacher, Frances Rodriguez, students gave personality to each of their cars, using a variety of add-ons and techniques, including texture, speckle painting, patterns, and even spoilers. 

pinewood d'ash races at sacred heart 2022

Physics: After meeting with Upper School physics teacher, Robby Harris, students were able to apply physics principles relating to friction, aerodynamics, and mass, to maximize their cars' speed.

Congratulations to ALL our 5th grade students for their amazing effort and success in this project! And we're forever grateful to Donald Cannatella, facilitator, commentator and racetrack champion – the entire Pit Crew makes the dream run!!!

pinewood d'ash races at sacred heart 2022
pinewood d'ash races at sacred heart 2022

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