2013 Heathrow Primary School Challenge wraps up
A record 51 schools and over 3,300 local pupils have helped make 2013 the most successful year yet for Heathrow’s Primary School Challenge programme.
Now in its 7th year, this year’s Challenge saw thousands of Year 6 students over the last six weeks build their own “mini-Terminal 2s” using basic geometric principles and rods made out of recycled paper.
The Challenge is designed to develop creativity while introducing students of Heathrow’s five surrounding boroughs to careers in construction and engineering at an early age.
Time restrictions, team work and co-ordinating construction are just a few of the challenges the children are faced with when taking part in the activity.
Jeremy King, a chartered civil engineer, has been running similar programmes for over 10 years and describes the challenge as, “a great opportunity for the students to practice their future life and work skills such as planning, teamwork and communication”.
After an introduction to 3-D shapes and basic engineering principles, the students assemble in groups of six and sketch the design of their terminal.
Using newspaper sticks made with glue and a “stixx” machine, the students are then given the green light to create the rods they need and join them together in a bid to erect their terminal before the buzzer dings.
Sundeep Sangha, Heathrow’s Economic Development Manager, talks about the huge contribution Heathrow makes to local employment.
“Supporting over 100,000 jobs in the surrounding area, we have a responsibility to ensure the workforce of tomorrow is aware of the wide range of career opportunities at the airport and is inspired to strive for them,” – Sundeep Sangha, Heathrow Economic Development Manager.
The Heathrow Primary School Challenge was launched to broaden local students’ awareness of employment opportunities at Heathrow. The new Terminal 2: The Queen’s Terminal construction, a project due for building completion in November and having supported over 35,000 United Kingdom jobs, served as the inspiration for this year’s event challenge.