The Mars One GN

Nov 26 2015

The Mars One GN was looking forward to present a suite of improved and new science activities that prepare students for meaningful education studying the future of space exploration. The unit of work provided our MYP year two students many opportunities. Together, we examined early rockets and meet thinkers and dreamers. We learn about spatial science, mathematics and what rocket scientists do.As learning experiences, our students constructed small “indoor” paper rockets, determined their flight stability, and launched them by blowing air through a drinking straw.



They also constructed balloon-powered rockets to launch the greatest payload possible to the classroom ceiling. Traveling into space is a very difficult and expensive endeavor. With some rockets, launch costs were approximately $20,000 per kilogram of payload delivered into Earth orbit (NASA, 2005). If that cost were to continue, imagine staying at a space hotel where it would cost about $10,000 for a half liter bottle of drinking water!


Another challenge was to build rockets made from pipe insulating foam and used them to investigate the trajectory relationship between launch angle and range in a controlled investigation.


As part of the Inquirer process we also visited the planetarium of the university Sergio Arboleda where students attended a conference with an expert and they were able to understand more issues and facts related to spatial science.


In the final Mars One GN project match there were ludic and competitive bids for an advanced rocket capable of launching large amounts of rocket fuel into Earth orbit at low cost. Through the unit of work, MYP year two students explore the idea about future expeditions to Mars will require massive amounts of fuel. The winning company designed and tested a rocket capable of transporting fuel to space at the best cost.


Now the unit ends I wonder about if our students will be a part of this future in space? Will they be the scientists, technicians, engineers, and mathematicians that make dreams of exploring space possible? I would like to think Yes!


The goal of scientific education at the Gimnasio del Norte School is to excite young minds. We believe that among our students are future leaders, planners, builders, explorers, settlers, and why not, interplanetary pilots! We just want to help them lay the groundwork for their future in any context.

Coworkers, students and families have contributed ideas and content directly and indirectly to this project and it was the vehicles that will make this vision possible. Their assistance is gratefully appreciated.

Special appreciation is extended to the Design teacher Daniela Riaño for their generosity and commitment to the continuation of this educational project.  

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