In addition to our community events, Space St. Croix provides free classroom and large group presentation to schools within the Hudson, Wisconsin School District. If you are an educator and would like information about our programs, please view our programs per age group below:
For All Grade Levels
Galileoscope – Space St. Croix hopes to bring the wonder of astronomy to all grades and schools. Depending on the grade level, it can be a simple presentation of how telescopes work, to more advanced sessions where students are shown how to assemble telescope kits brought into the classroom. Interested teachers can request a classroom’s worth of Galileoscopes to be checked out to participating students. Students may take them home for a week with a tripod, telescope, kit bag and observation journal. There is no charge for this program, but parents must sign a permission slip acknowledging that they will be charged $30.00 for any telescope not returned. Students will learn about optics, a brief history of telescopes, how to locate celestial objects of interest, and how to use the provided observation journal. We would be happy to design a program that suits the needs of your classroom.
Pre-K Kids Programs
(30-min. length) Free Handouts and Teacher Resource Packet
“The Sun, Moon and Stars” – This stellar introduction to basic STEM concepts is a fun tour of our celestial neighborhood. Students will get to hold small-scale globes of the Earth and Moon. Shaving Cream Suns are one of the optional art projects that can be conducted during the session. Distance, size, temperature and seasons will be covered concepts.
“What Is an Astronaut?” – This astro introduction will look at how astronauts need to be part of a team to be successful. A few chosen students will be dressed up in the various layers that make up a spacesuit. A reading of a book, like “Mousetranaut” by astronaut Mark Kelly, can be a potential activity option during the presentation. Air, hot and cold, countdowns and practice will be covered concepts.
Kindergarden – 3rd Grade Programs
(45-min. length) Free Handouts and Teacher Resource Packet
“Living on the International Space Station” – Students will learn what it takes to be trained to work and live on the International Space Station (ISS) for up to a year-long mission. How do you eat? Where do you sleep? What do they do on the ISS? These questions in addition to how the station was built, how long it will last, and what our future in space holds, will be answered. Concepts of Mass, Newton’s 3rd Law, orbits, and plasma will be covered concepts.
“Journey to the Red Planet” * Please note, if you would like to include the Giant Mars Map in this presentation, a room that can accommodate a 25 ft. x 25 ft. floor map is required.
Participating students will learn about the past, present and future of Mars exploration. Mars Virtual Reality (VR) landing experiences will be shared on tablet devices. An optional “Pre-session” activity is available for students to design their own Martian Lander using parachutes, paper plates or balloons to ensure a safe landing. Student teams can test their designs in class and then conduct final tests on the Giant Mars Map during the session day. Atmosphere, the four forces of flight, radar and the length of a Martian day (Sol) will be covered concepts.
4th – 6th Grade Programs
(45-60-min. length) Free Handouts and Teacher Resource Packet
“Voyager: Where No One Has Gone Before” * Please note that Voyager can be presented in a
one-or-two visit program. The optional second day would need a larger space or gym to accommodate the activity.
Participating students will learn about the “Grand Tour” – the boldest robotic exploratory mission ever attempted and an opportunity that only comes along once every 176 years. Launched in 1977 and still reporting back to Earth today, Voyager 1&2 are the longest operating spacecraft in NASA’s history. Optional activities include: “Spacecraft Design Team” – groups will learn a little bit about spacecraft, power options, size constraints, and instruments. Then they will design their own deep space explorers out of provided LEGOs. “Planet Design Team” – students will construct strange new alien worlds using their knowledge of elements found in the outer planets and studying images returned from the Voyager flybys of the outer planets and their moons. They’ll make their own creations using playdough and small Styrofoam globes. Gravity Assist, Launch Window, Escape Velocity and the Deep Space Network will be covered concepts.
“The Parker Solar Probe” – Students will learn what NASA scientists have learned about our nearest star and what we still do not understand, what questions the Parker Solar Probe hopes to answer, and why it needs to fly closer to the Sun than any spacecraft in history (without burning up) to get those answers. Optional classroom activity (weather permitting) is “Daytime observation of the Sun.” Several Galileoscopes can be brought into the classroom with attached solar filters. These will allow for observations of the Sun during the day. Wavelengths of light, telescopes, thermal control and vacuum testing will be covered concepts.
7th – 8th Grade Programs
(45-60-min. length) Free Handouts and Teacher Resource Packet
“A Year On the ISS” – A look into the One-Year Mission of Astronaut Scott Kelly, and the Twins Study, involving both Scott and his identical twin brother, former astronaut Mark Kelly. Discussion will include: Why a yearlong mission? Diet, exercise, sleep cycles and their importance to life on station; the use of color adjusted LED lighting and its effects on circadian rhythms, fluid shifts and effects on vision; and our ability to grow our own food on the station. Expedition Behavior, science conducted on the station, Mission Control, Payload Operations, and EVA will be covered concepts.
“High Altitude Science” – **Please note, there is a $75.00 charge for this classroom program, to cover the costs of helium, weather balloon replacement, and recovery of payload.
Participating students will be broken into teams: Weather, Science, and Launch/Recovery.
All teams will learn about the history of weather forecasting, layers of the atmosphere, use of weather balloons, and prediction analysis. Weather team will determine our go/no go launch conditions and plan when our launch window will be. Science team will determine what equipment will go on the gondola, take weights of all launch elements, test equipment and rig the gondola. Launch/Recovery team will conduct the prep for launch, launch and subsequent satellite tracking of balloon track, and recovery procedures for gondola and parachute.
Science, Weather and Launch/Recovery will present their findings in a report to the class/school.
9th – 12th Grade Programs
Christopher Mick of Space St. Croix is the advisor to the Hudson High School Space Club. The club is open to all students in grades 9-12. We meet every other week during the school year. In the past, the HHS Space Club has conducted model rocket launches, attended lectures from visiting astronauts and aerospace professionals, participated in design challenges such as Cubes In Space, attended movie screenings, conducted public awareness campaigns, and volunteered at events such as Women in STEM, Yuri’s Night and National Space Day. Members are provided information about internships, programs such as the Young Eagles Aviation, and student science competitions throughout the year.