Grade six students at Jack Hulland Elementary School will be taking a field trip to space on Jan. 19.
The 12 hour simulated space mission and the preparation leading up to the launch teach students what it is like to be an astronaut or to work in mission control. The student space simulation also delivers standard math, science and language arts learning outcomes through a unique learning experience.
“Seven student astronauts and twenty student mission control personnel, with the help of a few adults, will work towards simulating a real space shuttle mission,” Sara Tillett, a teacher librarian at Jack Hulland Elementary School, said. “Students have been doing their ground training at space school since mid-October. An important part of becoming an astronaut or mission control personnel is learning all about the solar system, the history of space exploration, conducting space-related experiments and following a strict astronaut physical training program in preparation for the space mission. Students also learn about the different ways we can communicate using computers and the internet.”
During the mission the Jack Hulland space shuttle crew, Excelsior, will communicate via computer with mission control, parents, students from other schools and community members.
. The astronauts will continue their exercise regime, follow procedures for take-off and landing, conduct experiments on the properties of a crater, the effects of microgravity on: maze completion, and eye-hand response time. All of the research results will be posted “live” on the web.
The student astronauts will be supported by student mission control personnel who will be maintaining the space mission website and performing critical duties in areas such as communication, navigation, public affairs, and research. All students participating this year will work on live webcasts, podcasting and an online newspaper.