The National Space Science Agency in cooperation with Clever Play, organized a Space Booth at the Bahrain International Airshow 2018, that targeted over 3,000 children of various age groups (4-12) with facilitated walk-through sessions, hands-on project-making and collaborative learning approach.
During the 4-day event, facilitators conducted the sessions at the booth in a fun and friendly learning environment. The importance of space science and its context in real life was introduced to the children and space science concepts were tackled through project making.
6 learning facilitators helped children visiting the booth with 7 different creative Space Science projects that was delightfully brought back home by the children. Projects included building a jetpack model, designing an Astronaut helmet, designing a spacecraft that could land safely on Mars, building a model of mini satellites, learning how with different angles we get different projectiles and how mass can affect the distance a rocket reaches, learning about the 3 main parts of a space shuttle, their usage and building their own Model, learning how to create a glider, understanding air resistance and how to target.
Dr Mohamed Al Aseeri – NSSA’s CEO – comments on this participation saying: “As part of our ongoing efforts to engage the community, children and parents expressed happiness and appreciation for NSSA and Clever Play’s joint efforts. We were particularly impressed seeing the wide range of learners of different gage groups who hold an interest in the idea of space exploration and are excited to imagine what lies out there beyond what we know.
During the brief encounters, children demonstrated enjoyment while gaining learning value. Based on the candid reactions and comments from the kids, it is clear they have some knowledge about mankind’s space explorations and adventures. The bigger revelation for them was how space science can help mankind observe the earth and solve problems in it. The mini satellite activity shed light on the value of satellites to our everyday life.
Co-Founder and Managing Director Ms. Latifa Al Khalifa further added “Some children came for 3 days just to do different space projects. They liked the fact that they could take their simple projects home. Of particular note, was the participation of special needs children who could not do the activities in other booths. They came and managed to accomplish the projects with kind encouragement from everyone. The inclusive nature of our easy-to-do activities made space reachable for those differently-abled children. One father shared that his daughter would like to become an astronaut and asked one of our facilitators if we see this ever-reaching Bahrain. Both were assured that Bahrain has declared its entry into the space race and that those dreams are just what we need to inspire education about space science.”
Clearly, the opportunities to grow the spacefaring mindset is rich and diverse. It would need collaborative intentions and programs to tap into the Bahrain youth’s space potentials.