04/17/2014 08:13 EDT | Updated 06/17/2014 05:59 EDT

Astronaut Chris Hadfield thrills B.C. kids by flying paper airplanes

COQUITLAM, B.C. - Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield's passion for space travel isn't limited to rockets — he was just as happy flying paper airplanes with a bunch of giddy Grade 5 kids in Coquitlam, B.C.

Hadfield joined 60 students at a theatre where the youngsters later joined an audience of high schoolers who heard the high flyer talk about the importance of teamwork, science and technology training.

His visit, part of the B.C. Institute of Technology's day of transportation, had Hadfield's passion to educate and inspire youth on full display.

As he asked to borrow one student's airplane, Hadfield remarked at what he called an example of simple but complex engineering, aerodynamics, art and design.

Hadfield marvelled at the paper creation, saying it had a nice stream-lined nose, with the centre of gravity in the right spot — about halfway down the wing — and a great horizontal and vertical stabilizer.

The engineer and pilot also told the kids he grew up on a farm and made a lot of paper airplanes in his time.