Competitions and Challenges
Take part in creative challenges and competitions for schools and families across the UK
Our Place In Space
Become a crewmate of spaceship Earth
This fun challenge is designed to inspire pupils to think about how we could all take better care of our planet.
One of only ten women ever to undertake a spacewalk, Nicole Stott is an astronaut, artist and author of Back to Earth: What Life in Space Taught Me About Our Home Planet – and Our Mission to Protect It. In this 12-minute film for Our Place in Space, Nicole tells artist Oliver Jeffers how we need to take better care of our planet and become crewmates, not passengers, of Spaceship Earth.
Nicole then sets us a creative challenge: to make a postcard that represents our mission to protect our planet. The challenge includes a downloadable PDF template that pupils can use to make their postcard – which you can then upload to a dedicated platform, with the possibility of winning a prize.
This is the first in a monthly series of Our Place in Space creative challenges, which are designed to inspire us to think in new ways about space and our place in it.
Share your place on Earth with astronaut Chris Hadfield
Chris Hadfield is a veteran NASA astronaut, engineer, musician, and pilot. He has flown two Space Shuttle missions and served as commander of the International Space Station. Chris has written about his time in space, exploring Frank White's idea of the 'Overview Effect', in which astronauts experience a shift of awareness after viewing Earth from outer space.
Our planet is enormous. If you could look back at your place on Earth from space, how do you think you would feel? For this competition, you'll need to create a fun and interesting video exploring your role on our home planet and the places which we inhabit.
Your mission is to make a short film that will:
- Show us who you are
- Share your place, or the place you live in
- Tell us what you'd like to see happen in your part of the world
All you'll need to take part is a camera and your own creativity.
Life's Big Questions
Life’s Big Questions is an interactive journey into the amazing potential of the human brain and a nationwide children’s survey into the power of the senses.
Hosted by Martin Dougan (CBBC’s Newsround), this online classroom activity encourages pupils aged 7–11 to think about five big questions:
– Can I believe everything I see?
– How do I know time is passing?
– Are colours only in my mind?
– Is everything I hear real?
– Are people the same all over the world?
Each of these questions is rooted in the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, the basis for UNICEF’s work. The online classroom activities attached to each question encourage pupils to consider how we experience the world and why the senses aren’t as simple as they seem.
New challenges are released every Tuesday of term time until 21 June 2022. The first 500 schools to take part will have the opportunity to win in-school experiences including an online Q&A with leading scientists or philosophers.
Code and write to win books, talent development opportunities and more with this competition
About Us is inviting pupils and students throughout the UK to create a poem or a Scratch coding project on the theme of ‘Connectivity and the Universe’ – inspired by our infinite connections to our planet, the wider cosmos and each other. The best entries will win prizes including books, tech goodies and talent development opportunities from The Poetry Society and Stemettes, and the winning poems will also be published in an anthology.
The competition is open to anyone aged 4–18 in the UK, and all entrants will receive an e-certificate for taking part. Poems must be no more than 20 lines, and Scratch coding projects must be no more than 90 seconds long.
Full details of the competition and how to enter are available at the About Us website