What's Up in Space Foundation Education?

Written by: developer

By Elias Molen, Space Foundation Space Education Specialist

With the onset of the New Year, 2015 is shaping up to be just as busy as the year before for the Education and Discovery team at the Space Foundation.

Schools are lining up to bring their students to the Space Foundation’s Discovery Center in Colorado Springs. Minus an unforeseen snow day here or there, February will have at least one school group every day that our doors are open. After welcoming more than 5,000 students in the first half of the school year, the Discovery Center is preparing to see at least as many in the second half of the school year.

February continues the full-court press by sending twice the usual number of staff to the 2015 Space Exploration Educators Conference (SEEC) at Space Center Houston. While there, the Space Foundation will lead five workshops for teachers ranging from kindergarten to grade 12. Topics will include Global Precipitation Measurement Mission (GPM), lessons focused on satellite imagery, rain gauge design challenges and the use of technology in the classroom. 

Also during February, a team of four, including our Special Advisor – Human Spaceflight former NASA astronaut Dr. Leroy Chiao, will invade the frozen tundra of Fairbanks, Alaska, for a week of community outreach, education programs and Audience with an Astronaut™ sessions. This trip was made possible through the hard work of Space Foundation Teacher Liaison, Marci Ward, and generous financial contributions from Fairbanks community businesses, especially Sumitomo Metal Mining Pogo LLC. 

The Discovery Center is maintaining a busy schedule as well. Once a month, homeschool families are welcomed with age-appropriate activities tied to a special theme. Every Thursday,  young children and their parents visit for a special story time. And several Space Foundation team members and volunteers have become certified Boy Scout merit badge counselors to help local packs and troops fulfill merit badge requirements in STEM fields.

The Discovery Center hosted more than 450 students and family members during the Discovery Canyon Campus/Mountain Ridge Middle School family night in January. And our message is rapidly spreading about our birthday party packages, so there is plenty to keep us busy and plenty more to invite you to be a part of as we share in the success and joy of space education.  

We encourage you to contact us. To get involved, ask questions or provide comments, please contact [email protected].




This article is part of Space Watch: February 2015 (Volume: 14, Issue: 2).