Friday, July 15, 2016

Space Explorers

Campers had a blast this week in the morning for Space Explorers!

On Monday, the campers got to play the Museum's very own board game, where they traveled through the solar system.  Our solar system has 8 planets (sorry Pluto!) and the campers created their own mnemonic devices to remember their order.  Later, the campers got to enter the planetarium and learn more about the planets the Museum's very own dome.

Tuesday was a fun packed day with arts and crafts, and physical activity.  The campers got to design and build their own space dioramas.  We provided materials and the campers provided their creativity!  Later the campers got to practice some Astronaut Training activities where they worked on their balance, coordination and and strength!  The campers learned about binary code, and had to decode an encrypted message from aliens in space.  They even got to listen to the mysterious "Wow!" signal that SETI (Search for Extra Terrestrial Intelligence) received in 1977.

On Wednesday, the campers worked in groups to design rockets that were launched on Friday.  They used team work to make decisions about what their rockets should look like.  The campers also got to build Lunar Orbiters.  They learned about what kinds of instruments, sensors, and equipment a Lunar Orbiter would need in order to function.

On Thursday, the campers became artists as they drew pictures using our glittery black Moon Dust Paint.  Then the campers blasted off into space, and got to take a tour of the Jupiter System.  They saw cool photos of Jupiter and four of its largest moons, Io, Ganymede, Europa and Callisto.  They got to see the rocket launch of the Juno probe, which went into orbit around Jupiter two weeks ago, and the campers also got to see first image of Jupiter that the probe sent back to NASA!

Friday was all about Rockets!  We talked about the parts of a space shuttle and the sequence of a space shuttle launch.  We did a rocket fuel experiment to learn how to make rockets go faster.  We used Alka-Seltzer tablets as our fuel and different temperatures of water to see how long it took crushed and whole tablets to dissolve.  Then we launched our water rockets!

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