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Laidley students learn to shoot for the stars

ROCKET MEN: Noah McGill, Kyle Bichel, Bailey Trimble, Alex Blake, Chandler Pyzer and Seth Reside were thrilled to launch their rockets at Laidley's school grounds.
ROCKET MEN: Noah McGill, Kyle Bichel, Bailey Trimble, Alex Blake, Chandler Pyzer and Seth Reside were thrilled to launch their rockets at Laidley's school grounds. Melanie Keyte

LAIDLEY students were abuzz with excitement one hot Wednesday afternoon when chaplain Tim Ormiston stopped in for one of his favourite activities.

But Chappy Tim, as he's known to most young people around the Lockyer Valley, wasn't there for a scripture lesson. He was there for a rocket launch.

It's the type of thing he does regularly to connect with youngsters in the region and guide them through some of the more difficult parts of their lives.

"I like to bring parts of my own personality and my life experience to my chaplaincy, and this is something I've done before as a kid and thought it would be fun to do,” he said.

The young men involved had spent a whole term assembling the rockets but had to wait almost a year for the climax, as their launch day was postponed multiple times.

Year 9 student Alex Blake said he enjoyed the hands-on element of Chappy Tim's sessions with them.

"It's good just to have fun and be able to do what we want to do,” he said.

"Rockets are pretty cool I guess.”

His schoolmate Chandler Pyzer from Year 7 said without hesitation he'd love to do the whole thing again.

"It's good because we get to work with other people,” he said.

Meanwhile, Kyle Bichel of Year 8 said he was just thrilled to have his rocket fly so high in the air, with the projectiles' average height reaching 300-400m.

At the end of the day, Chappy Tim said the venture was a successful way to bond and establish trust with the young teens.

"It's about doing life alongside the kids,” he said.

"I believe very much in the value of mentorship in life and everyone needs a trusted adult.

"As a chaplain, I see my job as just being there for the kids and establishing that relationship so if there are any problems in their lives, they feel they can come to us and we can chat about it.”

Topics:  chaplaincy education laidley laidley state high school practical learning rockets youth in action


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