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Students make a landing protection system for an egg

Taverham Hall Prep School students, from left, Anna Granville, 8; Yuri Konstantinidis, 10; and James Allinson, 12; with their parachute design to protect their egg in the school's egg landing project.

Taverham Hall Prep School students, from left, Anna Granville, 8; Yuri Konstantinidis, 10; and James Allinson, 12; with their parachute design to protect their egg in the school's egg landing project.

©Archant Photographic 2010

Students from Taverham have been recreating a Mars spacecraft landing using eggs.

Taverham Hall Prep School and Norwich BioScience Institutes have teamed together to teach the students at Taverham Hall school how to design the lightest egg landing protection system.

Juliet Pennell, head of science, said: “We’ve had them working in mixed age groups and everyone is bringing in different skills. It is about having fun, but there’s also real life applications for them. Science isn’t just something you do in the lab but it’s a real life skill and it can take you anywhere.”

Students watched a presentation about Phonenix - NASA’s sixth spacecraft to land successfully on Mars in August 2008.

The pupils were divided into groups of 3 pupils consisting of one from each year group.

Then using simple household materials such as straws, paper, cellotape, pritt stick, string, rubber bands and paper clips, the pupils devised their own landing protection system, which they then had to throw from a height of 12 foot without breaking them.

Louisa Crabtree, year 5 student at Taverham Hall, said: “It’s been really fun and I liked making them. My favourite part was when an egg cracked when it was thrown.

“I think we could have improved on the air force of the parachute on ours. The project is something I am going to keep in mind for the future.”

This is an on-going collaboration between Taverham Hall School at Norwich BioScience Institutes and follows on from another egg-based learning event in June this year.

Is your school holding an event? Contact Donna-Louise Bishop on 01603 772438 or email donna-louise.bishop@archant.co.uk

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