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Kamloops students receive a video visit from the Canadian astronaut

About 75 students entered the Kay Bingham elementary school library to hear Canadian astronaut Jenni Sidey-Gibbons.

Image Credit: SUBMITTED / Lisa Pye

November 14, 2019 – 4:47 pm

An exciting day for students at a Kamloops primary school. A Canadian astronaut paid a live video visit.

Grade 5 and 6 students at Kay Bingham Primary School gathered today at the school library on November 14 for a video conference with Canadian astronaut Jenni Sidey-Gibbons.

Sidey-Gibbons talked to about 75 students, calling the Johnson Space Center school in Houston, Texas. Sixth grade teacher Lisa Pye says the students listened to Sidey-Gibbons stories about her training, which the astronaut was able to turn into life lessons.

"Jenni was brilliant, she was friendly and open," says Pye. "The students were thrilled … It was really encouraging for the students to develop resilience and persevere toward their goal, which we try to reinforce at school."

At the end of the 45-minute chat, students were able to ask their questions, as if she already wanted to give up and when she plans to go to space.

"Part of what they're doing for her training is getting her and the other astronauts under as much stress as possible so they can see how people react when they're under pressure," says Pye. "She didn't think they would invite her back, she was nervous not to, and they did. She said it's a lesson to all of us that although we're not sure things are going well, that doesn't mean that we are accurate ".

Pye says the Canadian astronaut is still in training and expects to be in space for the next five to ten years, depending on the goals of the Canadian Space Agency. Pye says Sidey-Gibbons trains in an underwater simulator with a life-size replica of the International Space Station, which the kids were very interested in.

“A lot of them are talking about how they never thought so much about space, but now they're really curious to learn about it,” says Pye. “This was a launch of a project we are undertaking in the space where students will learn about all the different aspects. "

Pye applied for an astronaut to talk to his class last year, and as far as she knows, this is the first time this has happened at Kamloops school.

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