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Simple idea vies for astronomical prize

St Patrick's College student Sam Brady has come up with a simple solution to the problem of books falling off a school desk when you open it.
St Patrick's College student Sam Brady has come up with a simple solution to the problem of books falling off a school desk when you open it. Renee McKeown

SHORNCLIFFE 11-year-old Sam Brady has come up with a new solution to a very old problem with school desks as part of Origin's littleBIGidea competition.

The St Patrick's College Year 6 student entered his invention into the competition to be in the running to win the trip of a lifetime to visit the NASA Kennedy Space Centre in Florida, USA.

Sam's idea is an improved school desk design which prevents books from falling off the top when it is opened.

The desk stays flat when opening through the addition of two parallel bars on each side of the desk lid.

"My friend was talking about the desks and how they either pull out, and the tray comes out, or the desk lifts up and the books fall off,” Sam said.

"So I thought, what if it stayed flat and the books didn't fall off.

"We were really excited about it (the competition), so we wanted to put something in and see if we could win.

"Some of them (the ideas) were pretty crazy.

"I came up with the idea in our first class of little big ideas. We all had to think of a problem and a solution.”

Year 6 humanities teacher Travis Dewan said he had some clever minds in his class.

"I think Sam's design is a great idea,” he said.

"I am continually picking things up off the ground for these boys, or they don't know where it (their pen) has gone.”

Sam Brady has come up with a design for a school desk which stays flat when opening through the addition of two parallel bars on each side of the desk lid.
Sam Brady has come up with a design for a school desk which stays flat when opening through the addition of two parallel bars on each side of the desk lid. Contributed

The top 12 inventions in the competition will win $1000 for their creator, participation in a design workshop, and support from an industry mentor to help further their idea.

The best invention in each of the three categories (Years 3-4, Years 5-6, Years 7-8) will win their inventor a trip to NASA in the USA.

Sam said he hoped to win and work with NASA in the future in some way.

"I really like astronauts and I really want to be an astronaut or something to do with space,” he said.

Topics:  furniture design innovation inventions origin's littlebigidea competition school desk shorncliffe st patrick's college


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