The paved marching pad at the rear of Shoemaker High School became a launch site Wednesday for students in the school’s STEM Academy aerospace engineering class.

The students fired off their rockets, made from plastic soda bottles and powered by air pushing water.

Teacher John Melvin said the activity demonstrated Newton’s laws of motion about action and reaction and allowed students to understand the concept of thrust.

Students cheered each successful launch.

They will build more complex chemical rockets and fire those in weeks ahead.

For engineering minded students, the rockets provided a chance for students to use their calculation skills and fire missiles into the air.

“It’s really cool watching the rockets go in different directions,” said Shoemaker junior Adrienne Daniels.

“We can compare with each other and work to do better in the future,” she said.

There are other possible payoffs for the rocketry exercise.

“It’s preparing me for my future,” Daniels said, explaining her aspiration to be an aerospace engineer.

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