The Roar

Field Trip Report: Challenger Learning Center

Susie Reams
Student Reporter

On Tuesday, Feb. 26, about 36 students from the eighth grade science class, went on a field trip the Learning Challenger Center located downtown Tallahassee. The trip was funded by Dukes Energy, which we were very thankful for. When we were almost there we passed by the Florida State University library, it was quite bigger than any other library I’ve seen.
The field trip was a lot of fun, we participated in three different activities. Since there was a large number of students we were separated into A and B groups. This way we all could participate and not miss out on anything. I was apart of the B-group, and the first activity we participated in was the Space Simulator.
In this simulation, our mission was to land on Mars to find evidence there was life on Mars. So, they separated us into the astronauts, who would go on the spacecraft, and the mission control room, who helped and instructed the astronauts. I was ROV, which meant I and my partner who was in the mission control room, instructing where to put the pieces on the ROV. We needed to complete the Rover before landing on Mars because it was what we were going to use to get a sample from Mars soil. But, then we came into a complication, an asteroid was heading towards Mars and was expected to land near the area we planned to land.
So, we retreated back to earth and had a meeting in the mission control room to plan what we should do. After discussing we planned to go back to Mars since we didn't have enough people, we all switched with our partners. Now they were going back to mars to get to sample; while on the way back, my partner and I continued to finish to rover before they got to Mars. The asteroid made it easy for us to get the sample because it brought up from the lower layers on dirt.
They landed and to rover got a speck of the dirt, it tested and the results came back positive. There is life on Mars since the mission was a success we all headed back to the room we first meet up in and did a survey. Then, they took us to the IMAX movie room where we watched a forty-minute movie titled, Dream Big: Engineering Our World.
The movie was mainly about engineering and what inspired many young people to become engineers. The movie had multiple different opinions of why they became engineers and built the tallest and sturdiest buildings in Shanghai, China to a bridge over a river in Africa. There was those once clip where it showed a group of students created an underwater robot. The school didn't have much money but because of their passion and the design of the robot they won. Of course, they were nervous because of a few complications but they still had hope. The students had to go through many different obstacles, passing each one in a snap of a finger. There was another clip of a different group of students, who were competing in a solar panel race car in Australia. They may have not come in first place but they were more than happy to cross the finish line knowing what they will need to fix the next they enter.
In my opinion, I thought the movie inspired some of the students about what else there is in the world. I know if I wanted too, I would have a new passion for engineering but that's not for me. But, I know there many other students it is for, I have a few friends that want to go to college and major in engineering. The movie was very inspiring, it gave you ideas of what else there is in the world and many people got there today.
The third activity was about electricity, first, they asked us questions about energy and what different energy sources are there. After a little presentation of electricity being transferred to one and another. While they were doing this, their hair began to stand and T-shirts started to touch each other. When we watched them touched one another, you could the electricity and because they had the lights off, we watched as the energy get transferred to another source. Then, they placed us in a group of three and we were assigned to create something that created energy that was run by the wind. Since I’ve done the activity before it was quite easy for my group, when we already created a few more wind-powered electricity, we went to other groups and tried to help them if they had complications.
That is about it for the field trip, it was very inspiring. It definitely inspired me to look a career that only helps me but helps others as well. I hope you go to the Challenger Learning Center one day and have as much fun as we did.