TIM PEAKE, the first British astronaut to head to the International Space Station, has sent a message to every UK school.
He has encouraged students across the country to get involved in a variety of education and outreach activates run by the UK Space Agency and the European Space Agency (ESA).
The former Chichester schoolboy, who’s family is from Westbourne, has also sent out a brilliant YouTube video to would-be explorers which you can watch right here by clicking play on the link.
Tim said: “I feel immensely privileged to be going into space and to be able to share my experience with everyone in the UK.
“I hope students all over the country will get involved in this incredible mission and be inspired to follow their own dreams.”
Tim will be the first British ESA astronaut to live and work on the International Space Station (ISS).
His mission, named Principia after Newton’s world-changing three-part text on physics, Philosophiæ Naturalis Principia Mathematica, is scheduled to begin in November 2015.
Whilst on-board the ISS he will be using the unique environment of space to run experiments as well as trying out new technologies for future human exploration missions.
To make sure every student in the country gets a chance to be part of his mission, Tim has this week sent a letter to all schools in the UK outlining the exciting opportunities available.
Tim’s letter invites schools to take part in launch-day celebrations by attending one of the many events running in locations around the country, hosting their own launch party with the free ESA.tv feed of the launch, or creating something – such as a sculpture, display, activity or event – that can be shared with their community.
Most of the school activities running alongside Tim’s mission have some element of science or technology in them, but they cover a range of inspiring, curriculum-linked activities, covering everything from computer coding, growing plants and science/maths demonstrations to fitness, nutrition, art and design.
Dr David Parker, chief executive of the UK Space Agency, added: “Tim is an inspirational role model for young people in the UK.
“As an ambassador for UK science and space-based careers, he is demonstrating that there are no limits to what British kids of every age can aspire to.”
A number of events have already run so far. The ESA has run a competition to name Tim’s mission and Blue Peter invited children to design the Principia mission patch.
Children took part in the Great British Space Dinner challenge to plan a meal for Tim to eat in space and the winners have been working with Heston Blumenthal to develop their ideas.
And future activities include an experiment to grow seeds that Tim will take with him into space (details to be announced in May),
as well as a fitness activity for secondary students who can follow Tim’s training regime in space.
All of these things and many more will be announced over the next few months on the UK Space Agency website https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/uk-space-agency where anyone can sign up for the Principia newsletter to get alerts on these education activities and other news.