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Forrest Hill Primary students launch teddy bear into space

Posted in Articles on 05/2/2020

SpaceTed launches into space as Forrest Hill Primary students look on

For Forrest Hill’s Year Five and Year Six STEAM students, it was their school’s second attempt at breaking a Guinness world record.

The record: 35km up in the air for the world’s highest paper plane release.

Their meticulous calculations, careful planning, and inventive experimenting had all led up to this day.

The moment of truth arrived to launch SpaceTed into the stratosphere, attached to a helium balloon, to release the paper planes.

The helium balloon would expand to a diameter of 20 metres, where it would trigger the release of the planes and deposit SpaceTed back into the arms of gravity.

To ensure the experiment was captured fully and reliably, technology retailer PB Tech provided the school with the equipment needed to do the job.

The ultimate STEM project

Schools are continuously expanding their robotics and coding curriculum, and implementing more aspects of technology into their education syllabus.

PB Tech Head of Education Stan Fosenbauer says he was impressed by the complexity of the project, given that it was assembled and executed by primary school students.

“It’s not just a robotics project where you move something from point A to point B - this is the ultimate STEM project,” says Fosenbauer.

Forrest Hill Primary launches teddy bear into space

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Back on earth

After the launch, SpaceTed’s progress was tracked with Raspberry Pi processors on board his vessel. 

SpaceTed bravely ascended 34km off earth before descending, narrowly missing the world record by 1km.

He landed back on earth in Woodhill Forrest, where he was safely retrieved by the parents of the young “Teddynauts”.

The New Zealand technology export sector grew by more than NZ$1billion last year and is the country’s third largest export sector, according to a report commissioned by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE).

As such, it’s important that digital capabilities are being developed in New Zealanders from a young age.

PB Tech is invested in providing the tools necessary to enable schools wanting to think out of the box in how they introduce real-world applications of STEM to students.

Is your school planning its own ultimate STEM project?

If you’ve got a creative idea for a real-world application to get your students excited about STEM, we’d love to talk to you about how we can make it happen.

Get in touch with one of our education specialists today!

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