April 20: Winmalee Public School in Blue Mountains, New South Wales (NSW), Australia hosted an ARISS radio contact with Victor Glover who answered 18 questions. Students ended the session with a big thank you. The school STEM curriculum includes a weekly STEM Lab for K-6. Space studies covered the solar system, space travel and missions, and exploration. Lessons to prepare for the ARISS contact focused on the ISS: tracking its position in orbit using applied mathematics, building models of the ISS, youth learning about astronauts and their roles, then sharing their ISS knowledge with high school students. The ARISS event brought out a big crowd following area COVID rules—100 students, 200 parents, and the director of Blue Mountains schools. Others were a Blue Mountains City Council member, a popular Sydney TV crew filming the entire event, and a high-rating radio station that later broadcasted its audio recording. The school’s livestream got 300 viewers. The lead ARISS teacher wrote, “Our entire townspeople are now huge fans of Victor Glover. He was so delightful in his manner and responses with the children. Thank you so much to NASA and ARISS. Science Rocks!” The NSW government web site ran a great story at: https://education.nsw.gov.au/news/latest-news/winmalee-students-visit-outer-space. The minister of education stated, ”It’s an incredible opportunity for students to be able to speak with an astronaut and connect what they’re learning to real life events.” A two-minute delightful ABC Facebook post is at:  https://www.facebook.com/9NewsSydney/videos/496447581720667/

April 20:  During the Winmalee ARISS contact described in the previous blurb, a Belgian ARISS team member and colleague were teaching a ham license class for Belgian Army soldiers in two cities. A message said: “We each used the Winmalee students’ ARISS contact / ISS pass to demonstrate amateur radio. We heard 18 questions and answers at both of our sites with only a simple handheld ham radio station—an excellent demo of ham capabilities, antenna polarization, and signal propagation.”

April 21: The ISS National Lab, Lockheed Martin, and the Space Foundation sponsored “Gateway: The Next Giant Leap,” a webinar on inspiring the next generation of world changers. ARISS-US Education Committee member and Space Station Ambassador Melissa Pore presented a talk on how to connect students to the ISS through ARISS programs. The audience, made up of educators participating in Space Foundation and ISS National Lab programs, learned about Gateway as an outpost for Artemis missions to the moon and how to engage students in related learning activities.

April 15: A member of the ARISS-US Education Committee, Diane Warner, who hosted an ARISS school contact in 2019, had presented an ARRL (American Radio Relay League) Learning Network webinar last month at ARRL’s request, on ARISS activities at her school. Now, ARRL has asked her to have the webinar shown, and to support it during a livestream Q&A, at one of its July educator professional development workshops (Teachers Institute—TI. TI offers educators four days of virtual instruction on topics related to wireless technology and amateur radio. Diane will get to attend all four days; she is thrilled! 

April 19:  The ARISS team thanks SCaN for posting on its Twitter and Facebook platforms (53.4k Followers) an ARISS news release about the Winmalee Public School ARISS contact. SCaN’s Twitter post garnered top spot for the week with 7,132 Impressions. NASA STEM retweeted the Twitter post to their 300k followers.

Upcoming Events

  • April 21 Space Foundation Gateway Webinar, talk on ARISS for educators,  Melissa Pore
  • April 24 ARRL Virginia Convention, panel: ARISS engages Kids/Women in Radio  K.Lamont, M.Pore
  • April 26 St. Scholastica’s College, Glebe AU, ARISS contact, ARISS-Japan team
  • April 26 St. Margaret’s School, Melbourne AU, ARISS contact, ARISS-Japan team