During this spring break, we took our kids to Florida and they visited Kennedy Space Center for the first time. As much as they enjoyed the thrilling rides of the Orlando amusement parks, I was glad to see them marvel at the rockets and the space program. I had been to NASA when I was about 10 years old and now I was returning with my 7 and 9 year old boys. I was amazed all over again at the science, technology, bravery and sacrifice that has gone into developing our space program. I was excited to show my kids what these people accomplished with their minds and dedication and luckily my kids seemed in awe as well.
I wanted my boys to get excited about the real adventures that these astronauts went on in the name of science and show them the difference between that and what they currently consider adventures– roller coasters! I wanted to use this as a teaching point to show them that real bravery can do a lot of good. My older son is quite fearless and that sometimes scares us. He is very keen to go on crazy roller coasters, water skiing, and anything else adventurous. We often worry that this spirit of adventure could lead him to trouble and dangerous situations. However, watching the astronauts train and go on their missions reminded me that the adventurous spirit is necessary at times. It just has to be coupled with positive goals and intentions.
We also watched an IMAX movie about the Hubble telescope and I was blown away. I can’t even grasp how the technology behind it works but I’m glad for the geniuses that developed it and the amazing pictures we can now see. It has helped our astronomers learn so much about our universe, its creation and potential threats. Who would think one could see pictures of objects that are billions of light years away.
It is fascinating to see all the inventions and research that has come out of our space program and see the impact on other aspects of our life. Their research has led to advancements in bio-medical devices, computer technology, air travel and medicine. I know we have seen our last shuttle launch but I hope that all this research and advancements continue. They are amazing to see and critical to our future. I’m really glad I was able to expose my kids to the possibilities of infinity and beyond….