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Space School Reflection

Last year, on 8 December, Nick and I attended a four-day course and camp at the South Australian Space School, held at Warradale Urban Campsite − a course that will also be held in the middle of this year for Year 10 students. Over the course of four days, we were given the opportunity to participate in a wide range of activities related to the study of science while interacting with 20 other students from schools all around South Australia. On day one, we got the opportunity to be some of the first students to visit the Hamilton Secondary College Planetarium, near to our campsite, which is currently the largest planetarium in a school in the southern hemisphere. Additionally, we participated in a ‘Mission to Mars’ program while we were at Hamilton, where we adopted the role of either mission control or an astronaut simulating the experience of space exploration in a room replicating the conditions on Mars, and completed related activities about how Mars was formed. On day two, we visited the Defence, Science and Technology (DST) Group in Edinburgh where we were given a tour of the site and met with a defence officer to learn about working in the Defence Force and the associated career opportunities. On day three, we visited the Australian Space Agency Discovery Centre and were able to participate in a wide range of interactive games and activities before going to the University of Adelaide to tour the laser labs. Lastly, on our final day of the camp, as a group, we partook in daytime astronomy tours and microgravity experiments, and we even got to build and launch our own rockets! For me, however, the highlight was our nightly stargazing expeditions, where we ventured outside to be taught the names and origins of the most prominent stars and constellations in our sky. This solidified my love and my passion for space. – Eve Corso

Eve and I gained much from our experience on the 2021 Space School. While on the trip, we were presented with many opportunities to learn and deepen our knowledge through enjoyable activities, mind-bending experiments, and fascinating talks and conversations. We were surrounded by like-minded people, who all had the same interests as ours, and were able to form strong, long-lasting friendships. We were made aware of the abundance of possible careers in the field of space science, some of which we had no idea even existed. What we learnt from the experience has helped us to further understand and enjoy all work at school, not just in maths and science. Overall, the two of us had an amazing time on the trip and came out of the experience with a deeper understanding of science and a greater passion for the universe around us. – Nick Jaksa

SA Space School 2021 161
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