Children from Vincent Massey and Pleasant Park public schools got the rare treat of listening to a Canadian astronaut talk Tuesday about his six-month expedition aboard the International Space Station.
Robert Thirsk spoke at the Canada Science and Technology Museum, where he returned two Governor General’s Literary Award-winning books that he brought with him on his 2009 expedition in space.
“When I was young I had a dream of doing something challenging and fulfilling, and my dream was to become an astronaut,” Thirsk said to about 80 Grade 5 and 6 students.
Excerpts from the books – Airborne by Kenneth Oppel, and Deux pas vers les étoiles by Jean-Rock Gaudreault – were read aloud by their authors to the students and teachers at the museum.
“I had so many people, including teachers, who had inspired me to stay with my dream and I really believe education is the way to fulfill dreams,” said Thirsk.
“As Canadian astronauts, I think we’re responsible for encouraging the next generation to acquire all the necessary skills, including reading and writing, to fulfill their dreams.”