NASA astronaut Magnus interacts with NFSJ; Urges to engage school kids on space science
Kathmandu: American space traveler Sandra Magnus has stressed the need to organize interaction programme on space science from school level for the students.
At an interaction programme organized recently by Nepal Forum of Science Journalists in Kathmandu , former NASA astronaut Magnus said, “Conduction of interaction programme on space science from school days will help to develop different perspective in the students to view the society and world. Since such a programme helps to increase students’ interest in science, it surely contributes to social development”.
Sharing her experience of studying science in school, Magnus said that focus should be not only on bookish knowledge but also on practical. “I had a keen interest in space science from childhood. Space science was topic of my passion. I studied Physics in Middle School since I did not know about what I had to study to become space scientist. Had I known that from school level I would have zeroed in on space science”, Magnus stated.
Since children are confused about their career, this type of interaction programme should be organized regularly, Magnus said. “Students have curiosity about planets, sub-planets, and galaxy. But, they lack real ideas about them. Students can be taught more through practical than theory”, Magnus noted.
The astronaut suggested that Nepal government manage teaching and learning activities incorporating practical from basic level itself. “The government of the United States allocates budget worth Rs 20 billion$ a year for NASA alone and the US government allocates enough budget for other scientific centers as well. Nepal government too should accord priority to scientific research. From basic level in school, space science related activities should be started”, Magnus advised.
At the programme, Nepal Forum of Science Journalists chairman Chhatra Karki said that science journalism has a great role to take news and views related to science and its research to the public. “Till date, in-depth reporting has yet to be made on science journalism. NFSJ can play a crucial role to promote writing on science and reporting in Nepal.
Karki thanked Space scientist Magnus, who came to Nepal as a tourist, for airing her views on space science at different schools in Kathmandu. Magnus had answered questions put forward by participants at the programme.