Blast-Off: Schoolboy’s Creation Selected for New Exhibition

An Angus schoolboy has scooped a starring role in a brand new animation exhibition after taking part in a home learning programme.

Ollie Hay (11), from Tannadice, near Forfar created a time-lapse animation – – in response to Dundee Science Centre’s ‘Space Week’ activities.  Not only did Ollie win a Space science kit bundle for his impressive submission, but was offered the chance to feature in ‘Animation Station’, part of the ‘CONNECT’ development due to be unveiled early 2021.

The Dundee Science Centre activities had been brought to Ollie’s attention by Tannadice Primary School as part of its drive to keep pupils engaged in science learning during lockdown. Grasping the challenge, Ollie turned the family dining room into a workshop / film studio where he created a papier-mâché spaceship, Lego rocket and impressive ‘take-off’ in front of a Lego crowd. Taking photos every few minutes as the Lego spacemen climbed into the rocket and the crowd jostled in anticipation, Ollie created a time-lapse video of around 300 photos, resulting in a stunning animation.

Ollie Hay


Lorraine Lemon, Head of Business and Operations, Dundee Science Centre said, “We have been absolutely blown away by the level of interest in our Home Learning Programme and the exceptional standard of competition entries too. Ollie’s entry took things to another level and we’re just amazed by what he’s produced with a vivid imagination and some impressive technical skills – we can’t wait to unveil his animation to our visitors in the near year, and to get more youngsters enthused by animation in the months ahead.”

Welcoming the news, Ollie said, “I was so excited when I heard I’d won the competition but even more excited about being part of the exhibition. It’ll be amazing to let everyone else see my animation, and maybe get other children involved in animations too.”

His father Ian, Project Manager at East Grampian Coastal Partnership added, “We’re so proud of Ollie and his six year old brother Harry, who lent a helping hand. Ollie’s naturally curious and is always making something – our dining room is a hive of activity these days! Keeping up with school work is important but imaginative play is crucial too. It’s an added bonus that Ollie’s dining room school project has grabbed the attention of Dundee Science Centre’s exhibition team. We’re just delighted, and so proud.”

As schools remain closed for the time being, Ollie is keeping busy perfecting his animation skills with a higher quality camera and software, receiving virtual Japanese lessons from his Grandmother, riding his bike and helping his Dad create videos for the local ‘beach clean’ project!

Dundee Science Centre’s Home Learning Programme is supporting parents and carers in home schooling. With sign-ups from all over Scotland and beyond, the programme, which is free of charge, is packed with weekly themed activities which children can complete independently, with simple instructions, in their own time.

With ‘Weather Week’ now underway, more information is available at


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