Story Time from Space, a special project launched by the Global Space Education Foundation, sends children's books to the International Space Station for astronauts to read for children.
For kids, bedtime stories are the perfect way to end their exhausting day but the same cannot be said for parents who shoulder the responsibility of reading them out. Now, there are several benefits to this practice, if performed daily, including a child's improved imagination, enriched vocabulary, and enhanced motor skills, according to The Guardian. With these many benefits on the line, parents are especially keen on doing whatever is required to stimulate the development of their children, even if they don't like it. Thankfully, we have found the perfect alternative to this tedious practice and it is way more interesting and exciting!
Story Time from Space, a special project launched by the Global Space Education Foundation, is the answer to this dilemma. The nonprofit education foundation came up with the brilliant idea of having astronauts read books to kids while in space. According to its website, the foundation sends children's books to the International Space Station. On receiving the texts, astronauts film themselves reading these stories for children who are on Earth. Following this, the stories are edited on "this Story Time From Space website- look under the heading 'Story Time Videos.'"
"To make Story Time From Space even more useful for educators, cross-content curriculum is being designed to support the Next Generation Science Standards and Common Core. All of these materials, along with the videos from orbit, will be posted here on the Story Time from Space website, providing easy access for educators, families, libraries, science centers, scouts and others – look under the heading 'Curriculum'," reads the website about the curriculum.
The fantastic concept first came to Patricia Tribe, the former director of education at Space Center Houston, when she was doing some research on the literacy rate and science skills in the United States, reports Huffington Post. That's when she decided to merge STEM and literacy in a way, that is both engaging and accessible to children everywhere. "What better role models to engage kids in science and to engage them in reading?" said Tribe. "You’re not only looking and listening to the books, you’re looking around the International Space Station."
The unbelievable idea of having astronauts read bedtime stories to kids began with a pilot test from astronaut Benjamin Alvin Drew Jr., (also known as Alvin Drew) who helped co-found this initiative with Tribe. During his final flight of the space shuttle Discovery, Drew read the first story, Max Goes to the Moon by astrophysicist and author Jeffrey Bennett. Since the official launch of the project, many stories have been read, including, Rosie Revere, Engineer by Andrea Beaty and Next Time You See a Sunset by Emily Morgan.