OnfireSchool Visits / Field Trips

A trip to Te Awamutu Space Centre is an experience your students won't forget. The venue is full of interesting displays and interactive activities to fire the imagination for all ages (including adults). It's truly immersive and children are always eager to share what they find and learn. You'll probably hear them talking about it long after they have returned to school.

Schools travel from around the Waikato and even farther to visit us. It's worth the effort!

We also host visits by homeschool groups (click for details).

If you can't bring your students to us, we do have the option of connecting online via Skype or YouTube (contact us for details).

How it Works

You should allow two to three hours for your visit. The exact format is flexible but it normally works like this...

  1. PART 1: Presentation
    Dave Owen (AKA "Space Dave") delivers an audio-visual presentation for about an hour. This includes time for audience participation and questions.
  2. PART 2: Exploration
    60 - 90 minutes of exploration and activities, during which students explore the displays and interactive activities, and optionally complete paper-based challenges (quizzes, etc).

You can take a break at any stage for a run around outside, have some food, etc.

Numbers: We can accommodate up to 80 students at a time.

Cost: $7 per student.

  • Teachers and adult helpers are free (but please note the limit on adult numbers below).
  • For all group bookings that include a presentation we have a minimum charge of $100.
  • If you can't afford our standard rates, we have some subsidies available for schools or students in high need. Please ask if you'd like to apply for a subsidy.
  • Payment is due within seven days of your visit.

Dates: See our calendar for available dates.

Adult helpers: We recommend the following adult/student ratios:

  • Year 0 - 3: 1/5
  • Year 4 - 6: 1/6
  • Year 7 - 8: 1/7
  • Year 9+: 1/15

IMPORTANT: We need adult helpers who are able and willing to supervise and assist students. Please only bring adults who have agreed to this, and please only bring as many adults as you need. For more information see preparing for your visit.

Wheelchair access: The venue is wheelchair-accessible (click here for access details).

Preparing for your trip: Before you plan your trip it is very important that you read our page about preparing for your visit.

More information and bookings: Please contact us.

School visit All ages catered for Flexible and customizable Tied to the New Zealand curriculum Digital displays

"Totally recommend this to all you teachers out there... Our kids love Spaceman Dave."
- Kim Tautari-Scott, Teacher, Te Awamutu Primary School

"The passion, enthusiasm, and knowledge that Dave had when speaking about the Solar System had students spellbound. They were full of questions and wanting more. He is an outstanding educator who instills a passion for learning."
- Tracy Ellis, Teacher, Te Awamutu Intermediate

Click to visit

Presentation Topics

We can cover various topics but in almost all cases we strongly recommend the "Introduction to Space" presentation. Even if you've already covered the topics in this presentation, we can go into more detail and expand. Only choose one of the other topics if you specifically want to learn only about that thing.

Topic Description Suitable for Curriculum
Introduction to Space A basic introduction that starts by introducing the Solar System, galaxies and the Universe. We then finish with a quick look at spaceflight and what it's like to be an astronaut. Year 3 - 13
  • Nature of Science
  • Planet Earth and Beyond
The Solar System A more detailed tour of the solar system including the Sun, planets, moons, comets and asteroids. Year 1 - 13
  • Planet Earth and Beyond
Space Exploration See what it's like to live and work in space, how things work in micro-gravity, and much more. Preschool - Year 13
  • Nature of Science
  • Planet Earth and Beyond
Matariki: Culture & Astronomy This talk can cover Māori traditions of Matariki and/or other related topics. For example, If you're already covering Matariki at school it might be more useful for us to talk about other aspects such as how the Matariki/Pleiades star cluster has influenced world mythology and culture over the ages and why it is so interesting to modern astronomers. Year 3 - 13
  • Planet Earth and Beyond
Advanced Classes Run special sessions for your advanced students. With smaller groups of suitable students we can explore subjects in more depth as well as providing hands-on activities. Year 3 - 13
  • Planet Earth and Beyond
  • Technological Practice
  • Technological Knowledge
  • Nature of Technology