Amgueddfa Blog: Learning

This winter at National Museum Cardiff, visitors can get close to a genuine spaceship. The Soyuz TMA-19M capsule, the spacecraft that brought British astronaut Tim Peake back to Earth from the International Space Station, has crash landed in our gallery. The free exhibition is part of a national tour presented by global technology company Samsung and the Science Museum Group.

In association with the exhibition, several lucky secondary schools from across south Wales experienced an exciting science show from the Science Museum Outreach team. The Soyuz Rocket Show combined interactive science demonstrations with stunning visuals to explore the physics of rockets and Tim Peake’s spacecraft.

Beginning with take-off in the Vostok Rocket, the show took students along on Tim Peake’s journey to space. They experienced everything, including docking on the ISS and life aboard. Finally it discussed the perilous re-entry into the Earth’s atmosphere (which you can learn more about in the exhibition’s Space Descent Virtual Reality Experience). The demonstrations included rockets made from Pringles tubes, screaming jelly babies, dry ice clouds and liquid nitrogen ice cream. And of course explosions. Lots of explosions.

A few weeks later, the schools visited the museum to see the spacecraft itself. They also took part in workshops that explored different elements of space travel. Cardiff University School of Computer Science and Informatics delivered coding workshops using Scratch, while AstroCymru put pupils through their paces by testing skills required to be an astronaut. Finally, we did a session on spacesuit engineering, which developed ways to protect astronauts from both harmful UV radiation and the call of nature! One lucky school even got to meet real-life astronaut Steven Swanson, a retired commander of the ISS.

We hope these experiences will inspire the next generation of physicists, engineers and astronauts. Let's hope that soon we will have Welsh astronauts following Tim into space!

The Tim Peake's Spacecraft exhibition runs until 10th February. Admission is free, Space Descent Virtual Reality Experience costs £6.

Hi Bulb Buddies,

I have enjoyed reading your comments and studying your data. I’ve also enjoyed the photos that have been shared on Twitter showing some of you taking your weather readings. It looks as though you have been outside in all weathers in the pursuit of scientific study! Fantastic!

A number of you have reported that your plants have started to sprout! I’ve shared a couple of pictures here. Please share your photos with me as well, and let me know how your bulbs are doing when you enter your weather data.

Keep up the good work Bulb Buddies,

Professor Plant

 

Comments from weather entries:

Comments about your bulbs

Bursar Primary Academy: Thank you for giving us the chance to grow our plants- they haven't started growing yet. (O.E. Year 4) One of our indoor bulbs in the coconut pot has started to sprout. (K.W. Year 4). Professor Plant: Thank you for taking part in the project and looking after your plants so well! Keep me updated!

Ysgol San Sior: It was a great first week and H.’s crocus has already started to grow. H. had very much enjoyed looking after the plats and is excited to see the first growth. Professor Plant: Fantastic news, please keep me updated and share photos if you can.

Plasnewydd Primary: Some of the bulbs have started to grow. Professor Plant: Fantastic news bulb buddies. It is still early, but a number of other schools have also seen some early growth. Do you think it’s linked to the mild weather we’ve been having?

Garstang St. Thomas' CE Primary School: professor plant how long do you think until our flowers will bloom because of it being so rainy and cold. See you soon<3 Professor Plant: It’s hard to say when our plants will flower. Usually this happens around February – March. Some schools have seen some early growth, but the weather will have an impact on our plants over the coming months. Why not compare your weather readings so far this year to last year, and think about whether you’d expect your plants to flower earlier or later than last year?

Arkholme Primary School: We held our Memeorial service near to where we planted the bulbs - no sign of any growth. Professor Plant: I hope the Memorial sevice went well bulb buddies. Thank you for the update on your bulbs.

Steelstown Primary School: This week has been fun it is good to understand how our bulbs are growing as the weeks get colder. Professor Plant: I’m glad you are enjoying the project! Have you seen the ‘life of a bulb’ origami booklet under the Teaching Resources section of the website?

Good Shepherd Primary and Nursery School: A: I liked watering the plants and checking the rainfall. A: I liked watering the plants and checking the temperature. Professor Plant: Fantastic bulb buddies, you make the perfect team! Keep up the good work!

Tonyrefail Community School: No sign of plants yet. The weather has been much colder this week and it's been drizzly but no water has collected in our rain gauge. Professor Plant: Thank you for the update bulb buddies, keep up the good work!

Bursar Primary Academy: We have moved our rain collector as we're not sure it's accurately collecting any rainfall! A few of our bulbs are sprouting! Professor Plant: Fantastic, thank you for thinking about whether the rain gage was in the best position to collect rain fall. I’d love to see some images of your plants if you are able to share these?

Ysgol San Sior: We are excited to have our second crocus growing. Professor Plant: Fantastic news, please share photos!

Bursar Primary Academy: Sorry our data has not been good for this week- the weather has been against us! (A. Year 4) We are going to measure our plants next week. (D. Year 4). Professor Plant: Thank you for updating me bulb buddies, keep up the good work!

Ysgol Bro Pedr: a damp start but a beautiful end to the week. We planted a few extra bulbs inside the classroom as an experiment this year to try and force them - leaving half the bulb above ground - they re just starting to grow ! Professor Plant: Ah that will be an interesting experiment! Let me know what your findings are. Remember that it’s only the flowering dates for the outdoor plants that will need entering to the project website.

Comments about the project

Steelstown Primary School: We are really enjoying it so far and we are looking forward to collecting the data next week. Professor Plant: Fantastic bulb buddies, I’m glad you are enjoying the project!

Ysgol Gymraeg Dewi Sant: Diolch am anfon y bylbiau aton ni. Ni'n edrych ymlaen i weld y blodau. Athro’r Ardd: Diolch am gymryd rhan yn y prosiect Cyfeillion, rwy’n edrych ymlaen at weld y planhigion blodeuo hefyd. Wrth edrych ar y data blaenorol, pryd rydych yn meddwl bydd y planhigion yn blodeuo?

YGG Tonyrefail: Roedd yn hwyl cofnodi y data. Athro’r Ardd: Rwy’n falch i glywed rydych yn mwynhau'r prosiect Cyfeillion!

Stanford in the Vale Primary School: happy to restart the project and i am teaching the younger children in the club how to record. Have a good weekend and we will be back next week. Regards R.. Professor Plant: Welcome back R.! I’m glad to know the project is in good hands again this year. Keep up the fantastic work!

Hudson Road Primary School: Thank you, we have enjoyed learning to read the temperature and the rain gauge measures. It has only rained once this week but it has been a bit chilly. Professor Plant: Fantastic, I’m glad you are learning new skills and hope you are enjoying the project my friends!

Auchencairn Primary School: We had to move the rain gauge on Wednesday after someone knocked it over so we aren't sure if the results are correct. Hopefully it is alright in its new position. Stormy at the weekend and a plant pot was blown over. Professor Plant: Thank you for the update bulb buddies, I hope the pots and rain gauge are safe now. Keep up the good work!

Our Lady of Peace Primary School: We were glad we won the photograph competition and it was fun. Professor Plant: I’m glad you enjoyed it bulb buddies and I hope you liked your prize!

Our Lady of Peace Primary School: It was fun and cold. Professor Plant: I’m glad to hear you are enjoying the project even in the cold bulb buddies!

Whitgreave Junior School: I realised that I had misread the scale last week, so the rainfall data was completely out! It won't let me go back and edit submitted data, not sure if there is a way of doing that, please let me know if there is, so it can be more accurate! Thank you. Professor Plant: Thank you for updating me bulb buddy. You should be able to re-enter data for previous weeks, and the most recent entry will show on the graph as the correct entry. If this isn’t working for you please send me an email and I will make the corrections.

Shirenewton Primary School: We had to recheck the temperature because I took the Fahrenheit reading, not degrees Celsius. Professor Plant: I’m glad you are learning about different temperature scales bulb buddies. Keep up the good work.

Woodlands Academy: This week we put a new net over our plants to ensure the wildlife would not dig up our bulbs again. The children also loved the opportunity to go outside and check the readings. Professor Plant: There’s good thinking bulb buddies! It sounds like your bulbs have had an exciting time of it. Thank you for looking after them, and I’m glad you are enjoying the project.

Y3AE St Julian's Primary Newport: Unfortunately when we arrived at school on Monday morning we discovered that many of our planted pots had been thrown around and outside the school site. We still have lots left but we are keeping our fingers crossed that these will not be touched this weekend! Professor Plant: I’m sorry to hear this bulb buddies. How are your pots and bulbs now?

Steelstown Primary School: We are all enjoying collecting the data for this project. It gets more fun each week we take part. Professor Plant: I’m glad to hear it bulb buddies, I enjoy studying the data you collect each week!

Comments about the weather:

YGG Tonyrefail: Wythnos wlyb iawn!!

Ysgol Beulah: Roedd hi'n oer Dydd Mawrth:)

St. Nicholas Primary School: Wednesday was a very hot day for November. Professor Plant: Wow 19 degrees is warm for November!

Carnbroe Primary School: Hello Professer Plant this week it was a wee bit cold and very wet.

Ysgol Beulah: Oedd yn oerach yr wythnos hon.Cawson llawer o law nos Fercher.

Henllys CIW Primary: actual rainfall Tusday was 0.5 mm and Friday 32 mm

Darran Park Primary: we had a lot of rain

Darran Park Primary: the weather was warmer but we had a lot more rain.

Arkholme Primary School: we found that there was a lot of rain and that it felt colder than it was.

Kirkby La Thorpe Cof E Primary Academy: wettest week but very mild for December , double figures!!! only 1 frosty morning. soil becoming waterlogged but luckily in a breezy rural location so surface will dry.

St Julian's Primary School: A very wet week!

Our Lady of Peace Primary SchooL: It’s so close to Christmas we are so excited it was very cold this week.

Chorley St James Primary School: This week was very wet and rainy. Also, during the day time the wind started to pick up and on Friday we had hale. It was very bad.

Chorley St James Primary School: This week it has been a little bit hotter that last week, but we still had rain and wind.

Chorley St James Primary School: This week it has been dry and hasn't really had any rain except on Wednesday. Hopefully the next week will be more hot.

St. Robert's Catholic Primary: There was no rain at all this week!

St. Robert's Catholic Primary: It was mostly dry this week and not too cold.

St. Robert's Catholic Primary: A lot of rain this week. The measure was completely full on Monday.

Hello Bulb Buddies,

Thank you for all the work you have done so far and for sharing your photos! It was extremely hard to choose just five winners. The chosen photos are from schools in Wales who are not participating in the Edina extension projects. If you are participating in the Edina Trust extension projects then your photos were entered into their photo competition.

Here are the winning schools:

Llanyrafon Primary School

Peterston Super Ely CiW Primary School

St Philip Evans Catholic Primary

Ysgol Gymraeg Aberystwyth

Ysgol Llandwrog

Your prizes will be posted to you soon. Well done Bulb Buddies.

I’d like to send a big thank you to all the schools that have shared photos with us. It has been lovely to see the work that you have been doing, so please continue to share your photos! I will use these in my Blog posts over the coming weeks.

Keep up the good work Bulb Buddies!

Professor Plant

Hi Bulb Buddies!

I hope you all enjoyed your half term holidays!

I want to say a big thank you for all your hard work on planting day. You helped to plant over 17,000 bulbs across the country! And from the photos I’ve seen, it looks like you all had a great time doing it!

Weather records started on 5th November. There is a resource on the website with more information on weather records. I’ve attached this here in case you haven’t already seen it! This resource helps you to answer important questions, such as ‘why rain fall and temperature readings are important to our investigation into the effects of climate on the flowering dates of spring bulbs’!

Use your Weather Chart to log the rain fall and temperature every day that you are in school. At the end of each week, log into the Spring Bulbs website to add your weekly readings. You can also leave comments or ask questions for me to answer in my next Blog!

Let me know how you get on! You can share photos with me via email or Twitter.

Keep up the good work Bulb Buddies!

Professor Plant

Hello Bulb Buddies,

It's planting day for schools in Wales, England and Northern Ireland! Schools in Scotland will be planting next Friday.

Click here for activities and resources that will help you with this part of the project and with looking after your bulbs over the coming months! 

These resources will help you on planting day:

  • Adopt your Bulb (an overview of the care your Bulbs will need)
  • Planting your Bulbs (guidelines for ensuring a fair experiment)

And these activities are fun to complete:

  • Bulb Adoption Certificate
  • Make Bulb Labels

It's important that you read these as they contain important information! For example, do you know to label your pot so that you know where the Daffodil and Crocus are planted?

Remember to take photos of your planting day to enter the Planting Day Photo Competition!

Keep an eye on Professor Plant's Twitter page to see photos from other schools.

Best of luck Bulb Buddies! Let us know how you get on!

Professor Plant & Baby Bulb