Tag Archives: scichat

.@jeffisfast @benedickraikes & @The_School’s 6th grade did the Global Space Balloon Challenge! #GSBchallenge

screenshot by Amy Eguchi

Jeff Tarr (@JeffIsFast) is an inventor/entrepreneur/maker/tinkerer/programmer with a (thankfully) vested interest in sharing his talents and ideas with teachers and students at The School at Columbia University. He approached Ben Raikes (@benedickraikes), 6th grade Science teacher, and me in early October about participating in the Global Space Balloon Challenge to launch a High Altitide Balloon (HAB).

The timing was awesome, as I’d seen a recent message from Laura Blankenship (@lblanken) in which she shared a video and blurb about her students’ participation in the challenge at The Baldwin School:

The Baldwin School partnered with Lancaster Country Day School for the launch of the space balloon and items from a kit Baldwin won in the spring. The kit had items like a GoPro camera, a GPS tracker and a flight computer to gather data like altitude, temperature, pressure and wind speed.

Jeff worked tirelessly (independently and collaboratively) to advocate for the project, organize a plan, propose a budget, program sensors, choose a launch point, and set up a GPS tracker to chart the path of the balloon! People could follow via The SPOT App on an iOS device or via the web using his link and a password!

Here’s a link to the Eagle Pro Weather Balloon Kit we purchased from High Altitude Sciencehttps://www.highaltitudescience.com/products/eagle-pro-near-space-kit

Other educators were equally excited and supportive of the project including Amy Eguchi who shared the map photo (at the top of this post) with a message explaining that the image “shows how it has travelled. You can see the gap which is when the ballon was above 60,000m. Pretty cool :)”

It was so rewarding to read Ben’s email to faculty which included two awesome still photos from the GoPro camera attached to the frame!

Dear Colleagues,
Yesterday we launched a helium balloon  from Black Rock. It went to 104,000 ft! We have video footage from a GoPro that was strapped onto the rig. Here are a few screen grabs until we can produce a little film..
Buzz I mean Ben
ps Those pieces are bits of the balloon that has just burst. And that’s our parachute… It landed in a back yard in Williamsburg MA.

I was kept in the loop throughout the process and, though I missed the actual balloon launch, I cheered from afar. Below are a couple of tweets I saw from the trip to Black Rock Forest on the day of the event:

Watch the awesome video Hilary Szanto created about the project here: http://thetube.theschool.columbia.edu/files/balloon2_25155.mp4


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Inspired by @LisbethUribe to gather info about an #AugmentedReality virtual sandbox! #scichat #MakerEd

Lisbeth Uribe, extraordinary science teacher at The School, sent an email suggesting we try and make an Augmented Reality sandbox for our students based on the video above which went relatively viral recently. I immediately clicked on the video (linked above), and then googled “augmented reality sandbox” for more info.

I located an enormously helpful website of project details for an AR sandbox provided by Oliver Keylos of UC Davis. He wrote that their project was inspired by a video from group of Czech Researchers. (I LOVE when people model professional courtesy and share the inspiration for their ideas.)

Upon locating Oliver Kreylos’s Twitter feed (@okreylos), I saw an awesome tweet he wrote last about a blog post from a middle school science teacher; Tom Currie worked with his 6th graders and other members of he community to build an AR sandbox in their library. I promptly sent these links to Lisbeth and am crossing my fingers we can pull off something similar at The School…

Here’s the link to Tom Currie’s post http://currieosity.blogspot.ca/2014/11/an-augmented-reality-sandbox.html

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