Journeys of the Mind: Yes, We Went to the Moon

I was trained by NASA. Let me be clear that I personally don’t want to colonize space, but I thought that thinking futuristically was a great idea for children, and science fiction is an interesting topic. We started with Space Science Education.

First, we did the NASA thing, that is, learning and creating mock colonies on the moon, on Mars, and fussing about which would be the better place. The Challenger Center created programs that let us think really hard about landing on the moon. Here is a song we used to sing:

Mission Control, can you hear me? Think of this with kids’ lovely voices, not this one single voice.

Then, NASA had a series of projects: Marsville, then Mars, City Alpha.

I live in Washington, DC, so there is of course the National Air and Space Museum, and we have had programs there, small programs and overnight programs. I love the study of space, astronomy, astrophysics. Now we have Cosmos. I welcome it. In case you missed it, click here for a link to the discussion following the presentation. We have those who debate the issue of how, where, when and why. 

Because of NASA involvement, I actually knew Carl Sagan. I am happy to follow Neil DeGrasse Tyson into the new Cosmos series, and I hope television will come together like this on other subjects to open our minds and infuse interest in our hearts.

What can a teacher do? STEM, STEAM and link with organizations trying to make a difference.The organizations help you link all of the things that are necessary to validate your teaching.

Reproduced by permission of the publisher, © 2012 by

Reproduced by permission of the publisher, © 2012 by

This is summer camp in Washington at the Smithsonian. We worked to involve the kids in the study of space and the history of landing on the moon. My husband, a friend, and I taught summer camp for the Smithsonian.


What I like is that science, space science, is being discussed.

Hollywood has gone “selfie.” I love it that some producers in Hollywood can think beyond the movie stars and link to air and space. Kudos to George Lucas for using imagination to make us think about space long ago and for keeping the dream alive.

The world is forgetting the giant steps for mankind that have been achieved. When I was in Russia, in Samara, in the Russian Air and Space museum, the tour guide asked me, after I shared some of my knowledge of the space program with her, if we really walked on the moon.

Really? Really?

She believed it was a figment of American imagination and invention. She showed me all of the videos and old movies from Jules Verne to Barbarella? I didn’t remember that one.

Sadly there are Americans who don’t know much about space science education either. Let us hope the nation does not forget.

Why does Neil DeGrasse Tyson make people angry? I really don’t understand.

In the old days, and, yes, I was teaching back long enough to have met and worked with the Space Society and to be a friend of Carl Sagan because we, teachers, believed in the dream. The National Space Society. — sadly, budget cuts have decimated our national space initiatives. Or War — the cost of it.

I never thought I would be questioned about landing on the moon.


One Response

  1. How many people have grown up since that day when Neil Armstrong set the first foot on the Moon? They didn’t see it live as so many of us did. Now, we have rovers on Mars. Is that a figment of Hollywood’s imagination too?

    Something in excess of 10,000 people not only accept that we walked on the Moon but are willing to take a one-way trip to Mars!

    This idea of the Apollo program being some vast conspiracy appears in our own country too. I blame the education system. Any student who believes that we did not land on the Moon should not get a diploma. I mean — really!!

    I guess if a science class can teach that evolution is nonsense and that the world is 6,000 years old, anything is possible. I wish I could fix it.

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