Important Information

2016-17: Reach for the Stars

The annual initiative for 2016-17 was ‘Reach for the Stars’.  During the year a mobile planetarium visited the school, enabling all children to experience the sky at night.  
Ross Hockham from UK Astronomy visited the school to share his expertise and practically demonstrate how all of the planets move around the Earth.

The highlight of the year was on Thursday 22nd June when European Astrotech came to Turnfurlong Infant School to launch ‘Space Panda’!  The children in Reception designed the astronaut’s badge for the payload, the Year 1 children designed his spacesuit after investigating materials in science, and Year 2 designed the payload which consisted of an egg, a Cadbury creme egg, a bottle of Coke, a match and a teabag. They predicted what altitude he would reach and what they thought would happen to his cargo.

During the morning of the 22nd June, Sammi Graham of European Astrotech gave a talk to each year group, detailing the launch.  At 11.30 am the whole school convened on the field.  Despite the wind and overcast conditions, after a countdown from 10 to zero, mission ‘Space Panda’ was go!  After a blustery take-off, he ascended at 6 metres a second until he entered the cloud line, out of sight.  Due to his GPS the children were able to track his height, speed, temperature and distance.

The maximum height reached was 32,752m.  Everyone in school tracked the panda astronaut on his journey and he landed near at the edge of a field near Troston, which is 112 miles away from school.  Panda was safely returned to the school.

 Launching panda


 Space panda