Skip to content

By Emily Pitts on

An out-of-this-world February half-term

Explainer Emily shares our learning team’s fantastic February half term full of space-themed family activities.

The learning team spent the week going out into Bradford and delivering a range of space-themed activities for families of all ages. We’ve had rockets, astronauts, and even some aliens making an appearance to give everyone an experience that was out of this world!

A museum explainer cheers on a child as they launch a stomp rocket, while another adult looks on
Launching a stomp rocket. Picture © Jason Lock

To kick off the week, we ran community days at SHINE West Bowling in BD5 and the Thornbury Centre in BD3, hosting a wide range of activities throughout the day, and providing some very tasty lunch too. The biggest highlight—and I do mean literally—was the mobile planetarium, a seven-metre-wide inflatable dome which gave visitors a chance to experience the first mission to the Moon, learn about constellations in the night sky, and give a cool idea of what one of Jupiter’s moons might be like.

We also had lots of activities for all ages to make and play, including our very popular straw and stomp rockets. We had many people excited to make their rockets fly as high as they could!

An explainer shows to young children how to make a straw rocket.
Getting ready to launch the straw rockets. Picture © Jason Lock

Bradford-based Impact Gamers encouraged families to build their own space station level on paper before turning it into a computer game, and our own ‘Sound of Space’ foley activity gave people the chance to make their own sound effects for our sci-fi cartoons.

A young girl looks at a laptop with 'impact gamers' on the back, helped by an adult
Impact Gamers delivering an activity. Picture © Jason Lock

On Wednesday we delivered our Exploring Space show in Oastler Market—an old favourite from the museum that we brought out for families to experience. And when the excitement of the show was over, there was a chance to have a more relaxed time with our other activities, like hearing the story of Helen Sharman and her adventure to the stars to see what our planet looks like from space. You could also go on a space walk with our bouncing astronauts or build your own digital universe with Cosmos Corner.

On Thursday and Friday, we were at The Broadway and Kirkgate shopping centres with the return of many favourites, including the Planetarium, bouncing astronauts, and Cosmos Corner. But we also had a new crowd favourite—creating your own alien brains.

A person in an astronaut costume gives a young girl the thumbs up
Meeting an astronaut! Picture © Jason Lock

Finally, we had a very special guest join us at City Library on Thursday and Friday—author and illustrator of We Are All Astronauts, Kate Pankhurst. Kate ran workshops over the two days to tell us all about her book, before ending with a draw-along of the main character. One of the best things to see at this workshop was the return of visitors we’d seen earlier in the week at the community days. It was great seeing them get so excited to share things they’d learnt about earlier in the week!

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *