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Grade 1 Visitor is Out Of This World!

Where We Are In Place And Time is a very exciting Unit of Inquiry for both teachers and students in the first grade. This unit is packed full of strong connections, pride and eager participation. As we navigate through place and time, our central idea – Significant People Change the World – guides our exploration into our personal histories, why a person becomes significant, and the effect of significant people. It was during this exploration that we discovered a very significant person right here in our very own UNIS community. 

We were so fortunate to have Lieutenant General and Cosmonaut Phạm Tuân come and share his extraordinary experiences as the first Asian person in space. Students were enthralled to learn about the intricacies and experiences of everyday activities in zero gravity, like drinking water as floating bubbles and sleeping in a bag that is secured with hooks. They gasped to hear about the tremendous speeds and aeronautical acrobatics Phạm Tuân was able to endure and that a day in space was merely minutes long. 

Artifacts that he brought for us to see included the blue cosmonaut uniform jacket emblazoned with the proud Vietnamese flag and replicas of the fighter jet he piloted and the space shuttle he manned in space. We were gifted a signed copy of ‘Chuyến du hành vũ trụ lịch sử’ – a book dedicated to the actual events that took place to make this dream a reality.

Phạm Tuân spoke of how he was a curious scholar and how his curiosity drove him to seek more knowledge and explore the unknown. Once he was in space he looked back at the earth and realized that it was his home and that no borders were visible. He knew that even though he wouldn’t be able to tell where on earth he would land, everyone would welcome him into their country and that he was part of the greatest community called the world. Phạm Tuân shared how he needed to be courageous and brave to rely on his training and preparation in order to handle and survive potentially difficult situations like landing in the vast ocean or distant jungle. If our UNIS values can support a Cosmonaut, we can surely rely on them to guide us to be our best.