Icelandic volcanic ash was no barrier for Hawthorn High’s Rocket Club this week. In conjunction with E3 and Dark Skies Wales, pupils at Hawthorn High have let off a series of rockets at their ‘321 Lift Off’ after school club.
Pupils constructed a range of rockets from simple balloon rockets to compressed air and chemical rockets. The largest rocket, at one meter high, was launched on Tuesday 20th April and reached an altitude of over 300m. Pupils attached a parachute and camera to record its descent. The photographs are available to view on the school’s website.
The pupils’ next project will be robot building to simulate and study the Mars Rover mission. Children transferring to Hawthorn from local primary schools will be able to take part in this exciting project.
Astronomy was the initial impetus for these science based activities and the school still runs two after school clubs for KS3 and KS5 pupils. Last month over 20 pupils and staff spent a night star gazing in the Brecon Beacons. These courses are accredited and result in pupils receiving a qualification in astronomy.
One 13 year old student, Connor Mould, said ‘Getting involved in observing stars and launching rockets has made me realise that science is actually cool!’
‘These after school clubs really help bring science to life and wouldn’t be possible without the fantastic support from E3 Co-ordinator Claire Gee-Wing and Alan Trow from Dark Skies Wales’ said Physics Teacher Richard James.
The E3+ project is part of the Council’s ongoing campaign to ensure future generations are well-rounded with a successful education, healthy extra-curricular lifestyle and strong bonds with their friends and families. Where the scheme has been rolled out, it has made a major contribution to reducing youth annoyance and anti social behaviour.