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Year 4 Trip to Marshalls

On Monday 25th April, Year 4 were invited over to Marshall Aerospace to take part in the Cambridge LaunchPad Festival. The day provided lots of opportunities for pupils to improve their engineering skills whilst being inspired and enthused about what the world of Engineering offers. Pupils worked on a number of different projects that were led by over 40 engineers from Marshall’s, ARM and other engineering companies. One pupil who attended the day has provided a fantastic insight into what the day entailed…

Alice McCaig 4L

We were all hustling anxiously in an enthusiastic bunch, eager to escape from the hot, cramped coach. As soon as we were all in the cool air, we calmed down. We’d spotted the first hangar and were chatting endlessly in incredibly excited tones. We set foot on the hard concrete inside the hangar, glad to be shielded from the grey sky whose eyes were noticeably beginning to water. As we stared round the large space, the teachers began giving us stickers with our names on them and badges which showed we were LanchPad students. The leaders of our groups ushered us hurriedly towards our first activity.

A tour of the hangars was what our group was doing first. A man at Marshall’s (called Oli) showed us round all the hangars where they build and repair the planes. There was a horrid smell of chemicals which were used to strip the paint off planes so a few of us had to hold our noses! Oli also showed us a cut up plane called Snoopy who had sadly been eaten away by a horrid machine. Now only her nose remains.

Our next activity was parachuting eggs to the ground as quickly as possible, without them cracking. At first it all went horribly wrong in our four and no air got in our bag. Our egg (we named it Bob) fell just as if there were no parachute. We had to take it away for repairs and came back with a much better revised model, replacing the plastic bag with a larger bin bag. Bob was a lot happier.

After we’d had our snack our group made electricity-powered cars. Nikita was a very keen electrician and my favourite part was when we turned the Turbo Boost up to full!

Lunch. Just the sound of it rolls in your mouth. Sandwiches, crisps, chocolate brownie. I enjoyed lunch a lot. Anyway, let’s move on from lunch to the second- to-last activity of the day.

Chariot riding was my favourite activity. It was quite fun putting it together (we had to make sure all the screws were tight enough so that it didn’t fall to pieces and all the parts were fixed together in the correct order), but not as fun as trying it out, especially when it was (finally, as I was the last one) my turn to ride it. I was thankful that the drivers that were driving me were fast ones, because it wouldn’t have been nearly as fun with slow careful drivers. We crashed into a few cones just to make the whole thing a little bit funnier!

The last activity was constructing a catapult. It was more difficult than we expected because they just gave us a few materials and we had to design our own. We were a bit stuck at first, but after some help came up with a working catapult. We pulled the spoon and the ball flew across the floor. BRILLIANT!

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