GCSE Astronomy Weekend, Folk and Transport Museum, 19 – 21 October 2012

The UFTM hosted a different type of visitor when the Glenlola GCSE Astronomers spent a weekend there. Instead of looking around the historical buildings the Year 10 and 13 girls were definitely looking upwards!

We had a visiting speaker, Barry Loane, on Friday night, who taught us about different constellations in preparation for our first Controlled Assessment task. For the ‘unaided’ task the girls have to draw three constellations and include the colours and estimated magnitudes of each of the stars.

Some comments from the girls attending the residential included a few groan-inducing astronomical jokes:

“I siriusly enjoyed myself!” (Daisy);

“Outa this world!” and “I was star struck!” (Amy and Ciara).

Dr Ryan Milligan from the Department of Astrophysics at QUB visited the girls on Saturday afternoon to tell us about his solar research with NASA at Goddard Space Flight Centre. He is heading off to a conference in Yosemite National Park in the USA and then travelling on to see the next solar eclipse in Northern Australia – a very good role model to encourage the Glenlola astronomers to work hard!

Our thanks to Mrs Monroe, Mrs McDonald, Mr Dorman and Mr Barr who gave up their time to accompany us on the residential visit. Mr Dorman and Mr Barr’s ‘Empires’ game kept us up most of the night! Emma sums it up “As well as learning about the skies we had fun playing games and visiting the sweetie shop!”

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