Mission to the Moon

7 July 2019

With the 50th anniversary of the first Moon landing being marked this month, the Moon and space have been brought down to Earth and into the classroom in many of our primary partnership schools. Ogden consultant Dr Jenny Watson has been ‘in orbit’ around several schools in the West Midlands, helping children (and their families) to reach for the stars.

Last month, Jenny landed at The Coppice Primary School, hub for the Worcestershire North Primary Partnership, for a Moon Landing day. Thirty science ambassadors (Years 3 to 6) from Coppice and Acocks Green Primary took part in a whole day of learning about the Moon and the Apollo Moon landings, using ideas from the Ogden Trust resources.

The ambassadors started the day by writing down lots of questions they didn’t know the answer to, all related to the solar system. With their imagination clearly piqued, questions included:
“Is the moon hot or cold?”
”How did the moon form?”
“Is there water on the moon?”
“Why are the tides controlled by the moon?”

As the day went on, many more questions were asked and answered as the children learnt about the phases of the moon and the history behind sending a human into space. The children even made a lunar module and did some astronaut training!

“I learnt so much about the rocket that took Neil Armstrong to the moon, it was a cool day.”
“My favourite part was tasting food like an astronaut would!”
“Oreo moon biscuits taught me about the phases of the moon and we got to eat it after!”

Jenny also led an astronaut training family learning night for the Partnership at St Andrew's First School, Barnt Green. Sixty-five children (Years 2 to 4) and their families attended a talk from Jenny on the skills you need to be an astronaut, before seeing if they had what it takes! Everyone took part in hands-on activities including Lego teamwork challenges, using a robot arm and tasting like an astronaut.

The Halesowen & Dudley Primary Partnership also took their science ambassadors on a mission to the moon. Thirty ambassadors from six partnership schools (Our Lady and St Kenelm RC Primary, Colley Lane Primary Academy, Welsh House Farm Community school, Our Lady of Fatima Primary School, Lutley and Lapal Primary Academies) took part in a full day of space adventures.

After learning more about the 50th anniversary, the children wondered (amongst many other things!)…
“Is time slower in space?”
“Are aliens real?”
"How did we take a photo of a black hole?”…

Clearly fascinated by the topic, these budding astronauts then took part in lunar module making with partnership co-ordinator, Laura Marshall and undertook their astronaut training with Jenny. The students even got to take a trip to the solar system when they ventured into a space dome!

“I want to be an astronaut” Year 5 child
“Today was amazing. I loved it” Year 4 child
“Today was a 10/10. It was the best day of my life.” Year 3 child
“Today was fun and very educational” Year 6 pupil

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