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Sunday, May 21, 2017

Meet an InfiniD Lab Flight Director and See How Her Job is Different. Casey Voeks Teaches Space Tech at Lakeview Academy. Lakeview Academy Announces the Name of its New Space Center. The Troubadour's French Offices Discovered. Theater Imaginarium.

     Brandee Burke is the flight director for two InfiniD Labs, one located at Sunset Elementary in Sunset, Utah and Holt Elementary school in Clearfield, Utah. Both schools are part of the Davis School District.  Her weekly routine includes running missions for 3rd through 6th grades; flying twice a week at Holt and a few Wednesdays a month at Sunset. She started in January when both labs launched.  
     Brandee's first exposure to the space center world was on a sixth-grade field trip to the Christa McAuliffe Space Education Center in Pleasant Grove.  You're safe to conclude that that is where the bug bit. Brandee's story is one every flight director should take to heart. The next great flight director or center director may be one of those younglings making up that field trip or birthday party crew. Give every mission your best! 
     Brandee jumped into the wizarding world of simulator magic as a volunteer, then supervisor at the Christa McAuliffe Space Education Center in 2013.  Shortly thereafter she migrated to the Discovery Space Center. 

Brandee directing a mission

      "I am very passionate about this program being successful.  I have seen it do wonders with students," Brandee says. "My favorite thing is seeing students who struggle with behavioral and social issues in the normal classroom setting excel in the lab.  It gives them a chance to be in a different environment where they can learn in a way that may be better for them."

     I asked Brandee what her students think of the time they spend in their InfiniD lab.

5th grade:
“Missions help me learn something new and some things I learn are to talk with people and communicate.”

“I love doing missions because they are fun.  Some things I learn during missions are to coordinate with people.”

4th grade:
“My favorite part is learning new science because science is kinda cool to learn.  I love doing missions because I can learn new things.”

“I love doing missions because it makes learning fun.  Some things I learn are the water cycle, rocks, and fossils.  Missions help me learn science in a fun way.”

“I really like doing the missions because they help me learn new things and they helped me find new passions for science.”

     InfiniD flight directors direct their missions from the back of their InfiniD computer labs - right there in the room with the kids.  What a unique experience.  Instead of straining to see her crew on a small screen, she experiences the mission with them.  With one quick glance around the room, Brandee can see who's on task and who isn't.  She can direct tasks to students needing an additional challenge. She can quicken or slow the pace of the mission. It's the way I flew missions from 1983 to 1989, right there in the classroom with the crew.

     Brandee is one of the few, the brave, the chosen. She is a flight director in one of the world's most elite professions (there aren't many people who do what we do). Her work inspires hundreds of children. Thank you, Brandee for being someone who makes a difference!  

Mr. Williamson  

Casey Voeks Teaches Space Tech to Lakeview Academy Middle Schoolers

One of Casey's Two Space Tech Classes Watching "Four Hours: A Space Trip" in the Apollo Simulator

     Casey Voeks is the Keeper of the Hall Pass at InfiniD Learning (a big wig, founder, and Thinker of Big Thoughts).  And if that doesn't keep him busy enough, he's taken on another responsibility at Lakeview Academy in Saratoga Springs. Casey is the Space Tech teacher.  
     Space Tech is open to Lakeview's middle schoolers as an elective course.  They learn the science and art of the wizarding world of all things involving simulator based experiential learning.  Part of the course is learning the history of the space center program, and what better way to do that is to show Mark Lewis' film Four Hour: A Space Trip available for viewing on YouTube.  The video stars none other than yours truly in his yet to be awarded Academy Award performance playing the role of myself - the humble, mild-mannered, Space Center founder and director.   

     Because teaching is in Casey's blood, he followed the video with a questionnaire knowing questionnaires and quizzes tend to keep a student's wandering attention focused on the task at hand.  
     Had I known Lakeview's Space Tech class would be watching my debut into semi-professional documentaries, I would have cleared my calendar to be on hand to sign autographs and pose for pictures, providing Lakeview had the necessary red carpet and band for my arrival.  Naturally, I would have given Casey permission to dispense with the reception. Anything to help save the cost of hosting a local, shy to a fuss, celebrity.   

Mr. Williamson

Lakeview Academy Announces the Name of its New Space Center. Camps and Private Missions Start June 1

Nathan King at the Helm of the DSC's Columbia, December 2014.

Nathan King is the new director of the Lakeview Space Center.  With his appointment comes the naming of the school's space center, home of the starships Leo, Apollo, and Artemis.  

Up until now, the center went by the name I gave it for convenience's sake: The Lakeview Space Education Center. Today I can announce its new name:  The Lion's Gate Center!   
Keep an eye on the blog for news about Lion's Gate's summer camp and private mission offerings.  Nathan promises a website within the week.  

The Space Center's Brylee Perry Discovers The Troubadour's French Bureau  

Brylee Perry is a flight director at the Christa McAuliffe Space Education Center. She is engaged in a language study abroad program in France. I received an email from Brylee this week proving she had indeed found The Troubadour's French headquarters in Eze, a small village near Nice.  

While not the most luxurious field office, The Troubadour's French office is cozy, quaint, and easily missed even at a slow French lazy afternoon stroll.  I rarely, if ever, get anything from the French office in the way of experiential simulator-based education news. Could this lack of stories be the result of laziness on their part, or possibly that there are no starship simulators in France?  This absence of French starship simulators must be corrected as soon as possible, and I'm relying on my good friends at InfiniD Learning to do something about it. How can the folks at InfiniD sleep at night knowing millions of French school children go to school every day without access to full immersive learning?  

I urge InfiniD to act at once for the benefit of France's future; and for a more selfish reason, a ship or two would give my Troubadour staff something to write about; which in turn could put a euro or two in my reporters' pockets for a glass of wine and a nibble of cheese.  

Mr. W.  

Theater Imaginarium
The Best Gifs of the Week. Perfect for classroom use.

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