Ah, space. It really is the final frontier. And a Space Camp in Australia could be the next giant leap for Aussie kids. Read on…
Even us big kids really love thinking about, learning about and exploring the deep, dark mysteries of outer space. So it’s no surprise that the younger ones among us on our humble blue planet are also fascinated by the solar system and its galaxies, quasars, comets and black holes – and in many cases even aspire to be astronauts!
In America, there really is a way for kids to aim for the skies, just as Neil Armstrong did all those decades ago before walking on the moon.
It’s Space Camp USA, where keen space cadets can indulge their love of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics by suiting up for the International Space Station or training to walk in Armstrong’s moon boot prints.
What is Space Camp, and what happens there?
At Space Camp, Huntsville, (which is the one everybody knows) children get to reach for the stars not just by learning the planet names, but by actually tackling real-life space mission scenarios that require them to solve problems and think critically whilst immersed in astronaut training.
The equipment used is adapted from NASA’s actual astronaut program, using the expertise of Space Camp founder Dr. Wernher von Braun, a rocket scientist who actually developed the Apollo rockets that powered humankind to the moon.
What about Space Training elsewhere in the USA?
Kennedy Space Centre offers all sorts of education and training focusing on STEM at its best. Students can experience exciting, educational adventures, through field trips, private educational programs, overnight adventures, Camp KSC® and so much more.
Your group can come nose to nose with the Space Shuttle Atlantis, tour areas of NASA’s Kennedy Space Centre and even have lunch with an astronaut, all while inspiring kids – young and old – to become astronauts or even to become involved in other wonderful parts of NASA’s operations.
This location also offers 3 and 5 days space camps especially for international students, connecting them to NASA’s continuing mission of understanding and studying Mars – eventually landing humans on the surface one day.
Is Space Camp coming to Australia?
For the American kids, that all sounds very exciting and for Australian students able to travel to the USA with their schools or families, that’s wonderful too. But what about us Aussies? Is there an Australian Space Camp?
Well, Australia’s newly announced National Space Agency may have been one small step when minister Simon Birmingham announced it, but one giant leap forward for aspiring Australian astronaut kids!
There’s no doubt about it, the idea of space inspires us all – including our kids. “Take any subject and make it space-related,” said Michael Pakakis, director of the Victorian Space Science Education Centre. “Engagement goes up to 100%.”
He’s not wrong. Even before the Space Agency was announced, one Australian student created an experimental Mars Rover that was showcased at the International Astronautical Congress. He since completed a doctorate, was signed up by NASA, and today he is actually making a very much real life Space Rover.
But let’s get back to the question, is their a Space Camp Australia? Is there anything like that for Australian kids?
Yep: it’s called Mission Discovery, and it’s where ordinary Australian kids with more than a keen interest in the great beyond above our heads aim for something extraordinary.
What makes the Australian Space Camp so great?
Well, there’s real a NASA astronaut, NASA scientists and NASA leaders there, who help kids, just like the Mars Rover innovator, to come up with a space experiment that could then be conducted on the International Space Station (ISS) with real-life astronauts – IN SPACE!
The chance to have their actual space experiment conducted on the ISS is just the sort of opportunity that inspires our young space, science, technology, engineering and maths students to become the innovators of tomorrow. It takes place in schools and universities all over the world, including right here in Australia thanks to Latitude Group Travel.
Are you a kid who’s aiming for the stars? A parent keen to foster your child’s love of STEM and space? A school wanting to offer your students something special, but perhaps can’t make it to the USA? Want to know more about Mission Discovery? We’d love to hear from you!
PS – If you ARE a school wanting to go to Space Camp in the USA, consider this – we can not only take you there, but we also include such a wide range of other space and STEM-related experiences to support your STEM curriculum – anything you wish. Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Space (of course), Earth and Environmental Science and much more. You name it – and we have the experiential learning activities to match the ages, classroom learning and curriculum for your group. Don’t just go to Space Camp – do and see much more. See what’s possible!