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Monday, 02 July 2012
Nearly 130 Bolton students discovered the wonders of the
universe at an Ogden Trust event held at Bolton School. Year 8
pupils from Bolton School Girls' and Boys' Divisions were joined by
pupils from Turton High School, Essa Academy and Bolton Muslim
Girls School in the 'Spaced Out' event, complete with inflatable
One inflatable planetarium encouraged the children to
investigate how the earth formed and developed; they explored our
place in the Universe and looked at the inner planets of the solar
system. The children also took a journey into the night sky with
another planetarium, where they 'visited' the outer planets of the
solar system and delved into the night sky and its wonders as seen
Dr Simon Roberts, Ogden Science Officer at the University of
Nottingham, also participated in the event, working with students
to answer the question: 'How big is the Earth?' Pupils used GPS
locators to take a series of measurements that allowed them, using
some challenging mathematics, to calculate the circumference and
volume of the Earth.
Some pupils were able to participate in Galaxy Zoo, a real-life
science research project helping astronomers explore the Universe.
Using the school's iPads students were taught how to classify
galaxies into different categories. They joined more than 250,000
other people who have contributed to Galaxy Zoo so far, producing a
wealth of valuable data and sending telescopes on Earth and in
space chasing after their discoveries. Students were also shown how
to take part in other citizen science projects which encourage
public participation in active scientific research.
Feedback from pupils was very positive says event organiser
Brendan Ickringill, Bolton School teacher and Bolton Ogden IOP
Physics Fellow: "Pupils loved the inflatable planetariums and asked
some really interesting questions; the GPS session proved to be the
most challenging but that didn't seem to take away from the
enjoyment. Bolton School Girls' Division were particularly
captivated by Galaxy Zoo!"
The event was sponsored by The Ogden Trust, Bolton School and
the Institute of Physics.
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