The NASA ASTRO CAMP® Community Partners (ACCP) team hit the road the week before Thanksgiving 2022 to reach youth with NASA Science Activation activities through several collaborative partnerships.
The Bogalusa YMCA in Louisiana, better known as "the Y", partners with ACCP to bring authentic NASA STEM/Science Activation activities directly to their students. On November 18th, ACCP made an in-person appearance to surprise and inspire students at the Y during their weekly Science, Technology, Engineering, & Mathematics (STEM) Night event. Youth participants had no idea they were getting a visit from NASA, thanks to George Corkern, a trained NASA partner, who had collaborated with ACCP in secret to give the students a surprise experience they would be sure to go home talking about. This event kicked off with a STEM activity called On-Target, which challenges students to figure out how to deliver supplies to the representative surface on Mars. This engineering design challenge allowed 20 students to apply out-of-the-box thinking with hands-on activities. Marbles rolled across the floor as participants learned to work as a team, consider ideas, test their designs, and make changes to improve their On-Target delivery devices with support from ACCP education specialists.
The week did not end there. On November 19th, during a Science Explo event, ACCP's planetarium gave an all-immersive showing of the Dawn of Orion video for 233 guests at Tangipahoa Parish Library-Hammond Branch. Children, parents, family, and community leaders watched the Orion Spacecraft pass directly over their heads via video projection inside the black, igloo-shaped planetarium. NASA's real Orion Spacecraft had just launched earlier that week and was en route to the moon while these spectators in Hammond, LA watched NASA ACCP's rendition of that same historic flight.
At the end the week, on November 22nd and 23rd, ACCP helped young people learn about coding and ultraviolet light with more than 250 visitors of STEM Quest Innovation Days at the Children's Museum of St. Tammany. During this activity, children from pre-Kindergarten through early grade school ages coded their initials into binary bracelets and created ultraviolet detection bracelets with ACCP prior to the Thanksgiving holiday.
NASA's ASTRO CAMP® Community Partners program is supported by NASA and is part of NASA’s Science Activation Portfolio. The ACCP team collaborates with community programs to bring NASA Science Activation activities to communities in fun and engaging ways, inspiring youth (with a focus on reaching underserved and under-represented groups) by sharing NASA Science. Learn more about how Science Activation connects NASA science experts, real content, and experiences with community leaders to do science in ways that activate minds and promote deeper understanding of our world and beyond: https://science.nasa.gov/learners