May 4: Bundaberg State High School students from Bundaberg, Queensland, Australia engaged in an ARISS radio contact held at the Wireless Institute of Australia’s (WIA) Annual General Meeting and Convention. WIA is the national association for amateur radio in Australia and WIA members and radio enthusiasts from around the country attend the convention. Mike Barratt supported the ARISS contact and answered 13 questions from students. His light humor here and there in his answers made the contact special.  87 students from grades 9 – 12 and 80 others in the convention room, including parents, professionals, and community members, witnessed the contact.  The high school has an active ham radio club and many STEM courses.

April 10: ARISS thanks NASA for taking a photo of Jeanette Epps immediately after she spoke to an Italian school’s students during their ARISS contact. They asked her questions about her work in space and what it’s like to live there. The Italian teacher was beyond ecstatic when she saw the photo; she has shown it to all of her students.

May 1: ARISS volunteer Joanne Cozens Michael, working with faculty and students at El Rincon Elementary School in Culver City, CA, successfully launched a pico balloon. 500 very excited students along with 70 adults watched as the balloon began its journey heading toward the Atlantic. The balloon carried a ham radio transmitter identifying the craft with Joanne’s ham call sign; this radio signal allowed students to track its flight path. Prior to the launch, Joanne led STEM lessons about balloon flights to students in 13 classrooms. She showed them how they could track it and record its travel/progress by coloring in squares on a special grid-square map she prepared. The teachers handed out the maps to each of the students. 

May 4: Frank Bauer and Tanya Anderson led a mini-workshop in Crystal City, VA on using the ARISS SPARKI kit of educational tools for 12 educators working with the East Coast Chapter of the Tuskegee Airmen. This professional development workshop prefaces an upcoming August 2024 Tuskegee Airmen conference for approximately 80 youth who belong to Tuskegee Airmen chapters. The four-hour workshop put educators through their paces in how to do projects tied to ARISS and the SPARKI kit, such as working with electrical circuits using Snap Circuits®.  These educators will be guiding the 80 youth at their August conference.

May 3: ARISS educator Micol Ivancic gave a presentation on ARISS and the International Space Station at a conference in the municipality of Castelnuovo Scrivia in Italy. 35 people attended the event, including two educators, one from an Italian school that will host its ARISS contact later in 2024. Micol wrote, “People were very interested [in the talk, giving] positive feedback!”

May 1: Students from Chrześcijańska Szkoła Podstawowa Daniel (Daniel Christian Primary School) in Warszawa, Poland enjoyed time at Kosmopark in Kielce in preparation for their upcoming ARISS contact. They engaged in activities tied to rockets, space suits, Moon landings, first flights into space, and took part in an attraction enabling them to feel what it’s like to be weightless.  At their school, students built models of rockets and spacecraft and educators had conducted school competitions about space. Area amateur radio club members will do communications activities with students. A school leader wrote: “…the more we do, the more excited we get.”

ARISS Upcoming Events  
May 17-19: Hamvention, Xenia OH—ARISS forum, ARISS exhibit booth, ARISS-USA Team