Tawa teacher blasting off to Space Camp
The July school holidays will be a blast for Chris Monigatti because he is jetting off to Space Camp.
The Tawa College science teacher has been selected to accompany five New Zealand students for a weeklong camp in Huntsville, Alabama, attended by people from 35 countries.
It is designed to promote space science and exploration, and activities will include authentic astronaut training.
However, it won’t be a giant leap for self-confessed science geek Monigatti.
‘‘They contacted me, because they knew I was heavily involved in astronomy in the local scene, and asked if I could go. I was quite delighted.’’
He is a member of the Wellington Astronomical Society and Royal Astronomical Society of New Zealand.
Tawa College is also heavily involved in astronomy, hosting a Friday night club and a Royal Astronomical Society observatory is being built on the college grounds.
Space was a real passion for Monigatti, but he was constantly upskilling to keep up with his students.
‘‘Their interest has really driven me to become a lot keener.’’
He is looking forward to sharing ideas with ‘‘kindred souls’’, and bringing back lots of ideas and resources for the classroom.
He remembered the moon landing in 1969 well, and hoped something as significant happened in space for this generation.