Shawsville, Michigan students connect over solar-balloon launch

Shawsville, Michigan students connect over solar-balloon launch (Image 1)
Shawsville, Michigan students connect over solar-balloon launch (Image 1)

SHAWSVILLE (WSLS 10) – Students at Shawsville Middle School wound up working with a group from a Michigan school who had a mission to learn about the science of space. 

A middle school group in Michigan launched a solar-powered balloon into the sky. That balloon wound up in the hands of eighth-graders at Shawsville Middle School, where it stretches nearly the length of a classroom.

“It totally ties into all the curriculum that we’ve been doing the last four weeks so it’s pretty good,” said Physical Science Teacher Sheri Edwards.

The 30-foot balloon traveled hundreds of miles and landed in the yard of Shawsville student J.T. Foster. Attached was a message from Grosse Pointe Academy outside of Detroit.

Balloon from Michigan lands in Shawsville

Teacher Sheri Edwards says the best part was her students were able to FaceTime with their counterparts in Michigan.

Edwards said, “Seeing other eighth-graders across from them who could actually launch this balloon. I think it just kind of made them realize it’s not really out of our scope to do the same thing.”

Edwards says other than an attached video camera and GPS tracker, the supplies to make Michigan’s balloon were basic, 24 X 50 foot-wide plastic tarps, scotch taped together.

“When you were a kid you think anything is possible and so I think it’s kind of help them see you know we can certainly do this,” Edwards explained.

Edwards says she sees a similar project, but perhaps on a smaller scale in her students’ future.

Shawsville’s principal over-nighted the payload, the video camera and GPS, back to the Michigan school Tuesday. The students there are eager to see the images captured and will share them with the Shawsville students as well.

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