Seeds from space: Hartlepool school takes part in Tim Peake plant experiment

Pupils from Rossmere Primary Schools Forest School Rangers Club are growing the space seeds.
Pupils from Rossmere Primary Schools Forest School Rangers Club are growing the space seeds.

Children at Rossmere Primary School are embarking on a scientific discovery out of this world.

They are growing seeds that have been in space aboard the International Space Station.

The seeds have been given to the school as part of Rocket Science, an educational project launched by the Royal Horticultural Society’s Campaign for School Gardening and the UK Space Agency.

Chris Skelly, forest school manager at Rossmere Primary School, said: “We are very excited and proud to have been selected to take part in this experiment. It is a fantastic way of teaching our children to think more scientifically and share their findings with the whole school.”

The programme saw 2kg of rocket seeds were flown to the ISS last year, where British astronaut Tim Peake is currently on a six-month mission. They have spent several months in micro-gravity before being brought back to down to Earth.

Rossemere Primary School is one of up to 10,000 schools to have received a packet of 100 space seeds.

Pupils are growing seeds alongside others that haven’t been to space and measuring the difference over a seven week course.

All of the seeds are being grown in an eco-classroom, an innovative outdoor learning area that has been created within the school grounds which makes up part of the Rossmere Forest School project.

The children won’t know which seeds have been in space until all results have been collected by the Royal Horticultural Society and analysed by professional biostatisticians. The nationwide Rocket Science project aims to encourage children to think more about how human life could be preserved on another planet and what astronauts need to survive long-term missions in space.

It is just one of the educational projects from a programme developed by the UK Space Agency to celebrate Tim Peake’s Principia mission to the ISS and inspire local young people to look into careers in science, technology, engineering and math subjects, including horticulture.