3 Rs




Friday, May 25, 2012

National Pride

The Canadian Air and Space Museum housed some of the planes that made our country great. The Avro Arrow, Lancaster Bomber, Big Flapper and the CT-114 Tutor Jet (plane of our famous Snowbirds) are a few of my favourites that were on display. When I visited the museum four years ago and first saw the Avro Arrow, I was struck with awe. It was larger than the pictures of it depict. I asked one of the staff to take a picture of me in front of the Arrow. He did and I've used this picture in my science presentations showing it to about 6000 students to date. Young students did not know that in 1958, Canada had the fastest airplane in the world.

A couple of years ago in December, I taught children how to make balsawood gliders as part of the Museums outreach program. I felt priviledged to be part of the history of this great building.

I wrote to our Prime Minister and our Ontario Premier, only to have my letters passed onto someone else with the promise that someone would get back to me. No one did. The pleas and signatures of so very many Canadians fell upon deaf ears. Our veterans hearts were once again saddened by a government that has its own agenda (4 hockey rinks) instead of preserving our Canadian Aviation History.

When the building that gave birth to so many planes that were flown to buy our freedom against an oppressor is demolished under the wrecking ball, another piece of Canadian history will be lost forever.

The Canadian Air and Space Museum demonstrated Canada in its finest hour. It deserved a better treatment and the kind of respect we Canadians hold dear regarding our national pride.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Science Rendezvous

Yesterday, my grandson Nickolas and I were at the Northumberland Mall in Colbourg, ON as part of the "Malls of Science" for "Science Rendezvous." We used balsawood gliders provided by the Canadian Airforce. On these gliders, using pre-cut 110 lb. card stock, we showed the children to place the ailerons toward the end of the main wing, the elevators mounted on the back of the horizontal stabilizer and closer to near the vertical stabilizer, and the rudder placed at the mid-point of the vertical stabilizer. We taught them roll, pitch and yaw, respectively. We also taught the children who were visiting the mall accompanied by their parents how to make balloon-powered hovercrafts. My grandson learned why I get such joy doing these workshops. He watched the children's eyes open wide when that "WOW" moment occurred. Nick was hooked. He wants to go with me again.

On June 9th, I'll be at at the Oshawa Airport in the terminal building teaching control surfaces on balsawood gliders and we'll have the students also make the balloon hovercrafts.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Science Is Fun

I just love giving science workshops. Each class of students is unique.

This past week was just a blast. On Monday, April 30th I was in Penetanguishene doing a Structures workshop aptly named: "May the Force Be With You." The round trip to the school and home was 299 km. On Tues and Wednesday I did two more workshops on structures. The students do build amazing structures. On Thursday and Friday I was a little closer to home and did two astronomy workshops. Grade 6 students are facinated with anything to do with outer space. What made these two workshops unique was the fact that several students asked for my autograph. It kinda makes you feel important, but more importantly, its a real joy to inspire so many students about the wonders of space.

Science is fun.