What can pupils get out of studying space travel? Teachers and organisers are teaming up in order to help students discover the cosmos, as well as giving insight into the working lives of astronauts. Kulvinder Johal, assistant headteacher at Northbury Primary School in Essex, recounts her experiences with Mission X over the last 18 months, and discusses how it has benefitted her pupils.
If you had told me two years ago that I would be off to Science Learning Centre in York to collect the Space Education Quality Mark - Gold standard, I would have said “What is that? Never heard of it.” Well I have now, and I am off to collect the award and also to present the space work we have undertaken, which has just been out of this world.
An article this week on how bad UK students are at maths compared to Chinese students, to be honest, wasn’t surprising. What makes it an even larger problem is that, with the push towards teaching computer science in schools, this lack of maths knowledge is going to cause problems.
Trying to get students to look at programming problems in a mathematical way and to solve them by using common maths facts is currently a huge challenge – yet this is a vital skill that needs to be taught, from an early age, if the next generation are going to be any good at writing programs.