Ten students and two weary teachers have recently returned from an action packed trip of a lifetime. Over the past 10 days, students who attended the G'Day space excursion to the USA were privileged to visit the Kennedy Space Center at Cape Canaveral. During this time students completed a behind the scenes tour looking at such things as the Vehicle Assembly Building, and launch Complex 39, which was used for the Apollo and Space Shuttle missions. We also visited the Apollo Saturn visitor center and took in many interactive exhibits and also touched a moon rock. There were several highlights during the NASA visit; ATX Astronaut Training Experience, Mars Base 1 simulation experience and of course our lunch with and Astronaut- Winston Scott.
The next stage of our journey took us to San Francisco where we walked the Golden Gate Bridge and completed a S.T.E.M to Stern program at the USS Hornet and learnt how chemistry, physics, and mathematics applied to the operational functions of the World War 2 aircraft carrier. On our second day in San Francisco, we visited the Californian Academy of Sciences which is the only place on earth to house an aquarium, planetarium, and natural history museum.
Our third and final stage of the tour took us to Los Angeles where students attended an "Energy in Motion" program at Knott's Berry Farm. Our final day involved a visit to Universal Studios prior to boarding our flight home.
During our trip students not only furthered their study of STEM, but also learnt such things as:
-Personal time management
- Managing personal finances
- Working together as part of a travelling team
- Negotiating international airport check in and security checks
- Building resilience when at the mercy of forces beyond our control (delayed flights)
- Learning to fit as much shopping into a suit case with only a 23 kg allowance
- Learning to work with students from another school during STEM activities
- Navigating through Americas limited food menu's and making smart choices.
I would like to extend a very big thank you to the 10 students who attended the G'Day Space tour. It was an absolute pleasure to travel with such an amazing group of students who were outstanding in every respect and who were fine ambassadors for our college. Finally, I would like to thank Ben Shepherd for accompanying me on the tour to assist in chaperoning our students- I truly appreciate the time taken out of his already busy schedule to support our students on their trip of a life time.
I would highly recommend this NASA STEM tour to any student. I envisage that the next NASA tour would be offered through our college in the next 2 to 3 years.