Lunar and Planetary Institute

Explore! Fun with Science
Activity at a Glance
Eggstronaut Drop
About Capsules
Explore! Home Page


Web Sites


Several videos are available through NASA's Central Operation of Resources for Educators (NASA CORE). Educators can search the NASA educational products and resources data base at .

The Dream is Alive, Warner Home Video, 1985, ASIN B000058CKH
An introduction to space travel for young and old viewers. IMAX format.

Hail Columbia, Warner Home Video, 1982, ASIN B00005MEPI
A space documentary capturing the Shuttle program filmed in the expansive IMAX format.


NASA Planetary Spacecraft
Carmen Bredeson, Enslow, 2000, ISBN 0766013030
Children ages 7 to 11 can learn about the Magellan, Voyager, Galileo, and Pathfinder missions, as well as explore the planets.

Living in Space
Katie Daynes, Education Development Center, 2002, ISBN 0794503012

Children ages 4 to 6 explore Earth and space, and the practical side of living in space for a period of time; how do you keep clean? What do you eat?

Amanda Visits the Planets
Gina Ingoglia, Inchworm Press, 1998, ISBN 1577193407

Children, age 3 to 5 can follow a young girl as she tours our Solar system.

Friendship 7: First American in Orbit
Michael Cole, Enslow Publishers, Inc., ASIN 0894905406

This book presents the history of space exploration by chronicling several missions for young readers ages 9 to 11.

The Mercury Seven
Stuart Kallen, Abdo & Daughters, 1996, ISBN 1562395653
The efforts of the Soviet Union and the United States to put the first man in space are detailed in this book, with particular emphasis on the Mercury Mission.

Project Mercury
Paul Sipiera and Diane Sipiera, Children's Press, 1997, ISBN 0516204432
Children ages 7 to 9 learn about the manned space program of the United States, including technology, mission accomplishments, and the men involved in the missions.

The Gemini Spacewalkers
Stuart Kallen, Abdo & Daughters, 1996, ISBN 156239567X

Project Gemini's unmanned and manned missions are explored.

My Life as an Astronaut
Alan Bean, Pocket Books Publishing. 1988, ISBN 0671634526

This autobiography of Bean the lunar module pilot on Apollo 12 (1969) and the fourth U.S. astronaut to walk on the moon, will be enjoyed by children ages 8 to 10.

One Giant Leap
Mary Fraser 1999, Henry Holt, ISBN 0805057730

Apollo 11's expedition to the Moon and Armstrong's first steps on the Moon are retraced through images, transmissions, and colorful illustrations in this resource for children ages 9 to 11.

Handshake in Space
Sheri Tan, Sheri, Higgins Bond, and Matthew Rotunda, Soundprints Corporation
Audio, 1998, ISBN 1568995342
Two children find themselves time-traveling back to 1975 Apollo-Soyuz Test Project and re-enact the historic first rendezvous in space.

The New Book of Mars
Nigel Hawkes, and Richard Rockwood, Copper Beech Books, 1998, ISBN 0761307311
This book explores our neighbor Mars, and presents information about the various Pathfinder missions.

Gravity: Simple Experiments for Young Scientists
Larry White and Laurie Hamilton, Millbrook Press, 1995, ISBN 1562944703

Young children, ages 7 to 11, undertake simple hands-on activities to investigate gravity.

Cosmic Science: Over 40 Gravity-Defying, Earth-Orbiting, Space-Cruising Activities for Kids
Jim Wiese, John Wiley & Sons, 1997, ISBN 0471158526
Demonstrations and activities, for children ages 8 to 10, explore the structure of our Universe and space travel, along with some of the underlying physical principles.

Bowled Over: The Case of the Gravity Goof-Up (Kinetic City Super Crew series)
Chuck Harwood, McGraw-Hill, 1998, ISBN 0070070555
Elementary age children will enjoy this adventure of the Super Crew as they travel back in time to meet Galileo and help him experiment with gravity.

The U.S. Space Camp Book of Rockets
Anne Baird, David Graham, and Buzz Aldrin, William Morrow, 1994, ASIN 0688122299

Children ages 8 to 10 can explore the origins and history of rocketry. Lots of photographs and models.

On the Shuttle: Eight Days in Space
Barbara Bondar and Roberta Bondar, Maple Tree Press, 1993, ISBN 1895688124

Follow the Discovery mission of January 1992 and learn about living and working in space. Well illustrated, with many photographs.

Launch Day
Peter Campbell, Milbrook Press, 1995, ISBN 1562941909

Children ages 7 to 9 can learn about the preparation, launch, flight, and return of the shuttle Atlantis.

Apollo 11: First Moon Landing
Michael Cole, Countdown to Space Series, Enslow, 1995, ASIN 0894905392

America's manned space-flight program is presented in this well written and illustrated book for children ages 9 to 11.

Apollo 13: Space Emergency
Michael Cole, Countdown to Space Series, Enslow, 1995, ISBN 0894905422

Children ages 9 to 11 can follow the flight of Apollo 13.

The Dream Is Alive: The Flight of Discovery Aboard the Space Shuttle (Imax/Smithsonian Wide World Series)
Barbara Embury and Tom Crouch, Harper Collins Children's Books, 1990, ASIN 0060218134
Based on the IMAX film, this book for children ages 9 to 11 explores the space-shuttle program, including its history, technology, challenges to flight, and human elements.

Race to the Moon: The Story of Apollo 11
Green, Jen, Bergin, Mark and MacDonald, Fiona. Expedition. Franklin Watts, 1998. ISBN 0531153436

Describes the events leading up to the Apollo 11 flight that put the first man on the moon and the technological advances that made this and later flights possible.

The Space Shuttle Operator's Manual
Kerry Joels, Ballentine Books, 1982, ISBN 0345341813

Readers experience all the stages of a real mission.

Do Your Ears Pop in Space?: And 500 Other Surprising Questions About Space Travel
Mike Mullane, Wiley and Sons 1997, ISBN 0471154040

Shuttle astronaut Mike Mullane shares what it is really like to travel in space.

Rocket Science: 50 Flying, Floating, Flipping, Spinning Gadgets Kids Create Themselves
Jim Wiese and Tina Cash-Walsh, Wiley, 1995, ISBN 0471113573

Children ages 9 to 12 explore the principles of physics and other sciences in this illustrated collection of activities.

Floating Home
David Getz, Henry Holt, 1997, ISBN 0805065806

A young girl explores the Kennedy Space Center at Cape Canaveral and becomes involved with a space shuttle mission. Children ages 6 to 9 will enjoy learning about the astronaut preparation presented in this book.

Web Sites

Apollo 10: The Story is an interactive exploration of the Apollo 10 mission precursor to the Moon landing of Apollo 11. Children ages 9 and older can learn about the mission and see diagrams of the capsule. Lesson plans, tied to the British school system, also are available.

NASA's Office of Space Science mission page provides links to the main pages of past, pending, and present missions. Each main page presents the mission goals, timeline of events, and an overview of mission engineering. Learn more about different types of space capsules and, in some cases, the ways in which they land on other planetary bodies.
What is the sun made of? Are the Earth and planets made of the same materials? The Genesis Mission sent a spacecraft to collect samples of the sun, called solar wind, that may contain the answers.

The goal of the Dawn Mission is to characterize the conditions and processes of the solar system's earliest epoch by investigating in detail two of the largest protoplanets remaining intact since their formations Ceres and Vesta.

Scientists will learn about this small planet nearest to our Sun Mercury through the MESSENGER Mission

The Stardust Mission sampled Comet Wild 2 in January 2004 and is due to return sample material in January of 2006.

The Deep Impact Mission will propel a projectile into the surface of a comet to create a huge crater. Not only will this allow scientists to understand the cratering process, but they will be able to study a fresh comet surface and gain insights into how our Solar System formed.

On February 17, 1996, the Near Earth Asteroid Rendezvous was the first Discovery Program spacecraft to be launched. It is the first spacecraft to orbit and land on an asteroid Eros.

The Cassini Mission successfully went into orbit around Saturn in June 2004 after a 7 year voyage. Its probe, the Huygens probe, will travel to the surface of Titan and provide information about this moon.

This site contains details about the Huygens atmospheric probe, which is designed to be released from the Cassini Spacecraft and to descend to the surface of Saturn's moon, Titan. The capsule design needs to ensure that the probe will land safely.

Spirit and Opportunity roved across Mars in the Mars Rover Exploration Mission

Surveyor probes were the first U.S. spacecrafts to land safely on the Moon (1966–1968). The Surveyor probes were tasked with obtaining close-up images of the lunar surface so that it could be determined if the terrain was safe for manned landings.

The Soviet Venera Spacecraft missions encompassed a variety of Venus orbiters, landers, and probes between 1961–1983.

A small lander and rover were successfully delivered to the surface of Mars in 1997. JPL's Mars Pathfinder site includes mission information and images.

The Soviet Lunar program had 20 missions to the Moon, including the first probe to impact the Moon, the first flyby and image of the far side of the moon, the first soft landing, and the first circumlunar probe to return to Earth.

This historical archive of NASA's space history, rocket history, early astronauts, and the manned missions will be of great interest to individuals interested in the chronology of space aeronautics.

Find the latest news about the Space Shuttle program.

Web resources for the Apollo program.

The Gemini Mission pages from NASA's Kennedy Space Center. Gemini's mission included getting a man into space for up to two weeks, docking with orbiting vehicles, and perfecting the ways in which capsules re-entered Earth's atmosphere.

Johnson Space Center's searchable collection of more than 9000 NASA press release photos spanning the American manned space program, from the Mercury program to the STS-79 Shuttle mission.


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Last updated
February 22, 2005