The Cromar Future Group currently runs three after-school science clubs covering four primary schools – Tarland, Logie Coldstone, Towie and Craigievar.
During the past academic year, the schools were focused on “The Mars Project” investigating Mars and its environment and planning what sort of a long-term self-sustainable colony on Mars they would choose to establish.
As well as considering a lot of the science and making decisions on how the colony would be powered; where the resources would come from; and how they would grow food; they also considered how they would cope emotionally with always being in an artificial environment and how mankind would evolve on Mars.
Pictures showing the actual models built were sent together with letters from the children who chose to write either to Elon Musk at SpaceX or James Watzin head of the Mars Programme at NASA.
Over the summer break the Future Group received replies from both the SpaceX Team and James Watzin. Copies were presented to the children who had participated and to their school, together with stickers received from SpaceX and posters sent by NASA.
Future Group Trustee, Lesley Ellis commented: “The children were over the moon by the response. To be told that “The student involvement and projects were astounding!” by NASA and, “We will definitely need help from talented problems solvers like yourselves in the future” by SpaceX was fantastic.
“NASA even said they were going to circulate it as an example of how you can use Mars as a motivator for learning.”
This year the group are looking a little closer to home and trying to do something to “Save Our Planet”. They are looking at issues such as plastic waste and bio-plastics; how schools could be more energy efficient; and how they could remove micro-particles of plastic from the sea.