Every now and then we all look up at the night sky and try to figure out what is out there. Many children, and adults, dream about becoming an astronaut and going into space. Yet, everyday life has a way of squashing the natural explorer within us. However, this instinct to become the extraordinary and achieve the unimaginable should transcend into classrooms and offices. Here are 8 reasons why we believe every little child should train like a future astronaut.
1. Develop Mindfulness
Simply put to be an astronaut you need to think like an astronaut. Travelling away from Earth where everyone you know and love live needs a particular mindset. Moreover, staying in space for a long period of time without feeling overwhelmed by loneliness, depression or anxiety is demanding. It requires being aware of your thoughts and reactions, and being present in the moment. By training like a future astronaut children learn to break free from being in autopilot mode and think before they react. They learn to take control of their minds, make healthy choices and develop their mental wellbeing.
2. Increase Physical Strength
Living in a zero gravity environment for a long period of time takes a heavy toll on the human body. Activities we do consciously such as walking to involuntary ones like our blood flow, become topsy turvy in space. Therefore, astronauts train vigorously before and during space travel to keep their physique in top shape. When training like a future astronaut children will exercise regularly, and build their muscle and bone strength. Moreover, this will also assist to develop their fine and gross motor skills.
3. Learn to Work Together
Astronauts have to work together with people they just met from all over the world. Bottom line is they are confined to a metal tube whisking through space at extreme speed. This makes working together as a team not just good for moral but necessary for survival. Children begin to understand the importance of international cooperation and cultural competence. They also develop collaboration as a life skill, when training as a future astronaut.
4. Improve Communication
Often astronauts who go on various missions speak different languages. As a result knowing languages is a key requirement to becoming an astronaut. For example astronauts from the United States have to learn Russian. Moreover, during space travel astronauts continuously keep in touch with their base on Earth and exchange vital information. Thus, developing communication skills is an important part of training to be a future astronaut. It’s not only about being a linguist but also learning to communicate clearly, politely and an engaging way.
5. Adapt Scientific Thinking
All astronauts are scientists and lifelong learners. They come from different fields of expertise in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math. After years of education and training on the job, they continue to expand their capacity to understand the unknown. Therefore, training to be a future astronaut encourages children to develop critical thinking and question everything they encounter. It prompts them to develop a thirst for new knowledge and strive to make things better.
6. Fuel Curiosity, Creativity and Imagination
Space exploration is a great source of inspiration. It’s about finding answers to questions we haven’t thought of in the first place. Moreover, it’s easy to see that astronauts themselves are profound artists. They often describe what they see from space like a poet would.
“Earth was kind of like the classroom globe sitting on a teacher’s desk, but no country divisions.” – Major William A. Anders, Apollo 8 mission crew
They name their spaceships and missions with clever eloquence – Challenger, Discovery. Training like future astronauts enable children to bring the wonder of space into their day to day life. It helps them to understand that the sky is no longer the limit!
7. Commitment to Environmental Conservation
“On Christmas Eve, 1968, none of the astronauts aboard Apollo 8 were prepared for the spellbinding moment when they would first see their home planet rise from behind the desolate lunar horizon. The vision of Earth provided them the first spot of color as they floated in the blackness of space, orbiting the lunar surface.”
Space travel lets us literally take a step back from Earth and look at it from a fresh pair of eyes. This wonderful planet which is home to everyone and everything we know. A place many of us take for granted. Over decades of space exploration astronauts have found a lot of information about Earth’s past and present. We understand better different ways in which Earth is changing and what we need to do to protect it. As future astronauts children grow to appreciate the world from both aesthetic and scientific perspectives.
8. Meet the Challenges of Tomorrow
Planning space missions require combining a vast amount of knowledge and skills, to explore and discover the unknown. Essentially it is preparing for something we may encounter or find in the future. Extensive innovative thinking involved in space travel has brought about many spin-off inventions we use on Earth right now. More importantly, it has prepared us to face uncertainty armed with transferable knowledge and a set of agile skills. Thus, training like a future astronaut helps children to think out of the box, learn how to learn and find innovative solutions to problems.
Becoming an astronaut is about daring to explore the unknown, developing a taste for adventure and pushing your limits. Space travel brings people together, combines knowledge and finds new solutions to challenges we face right here on Earth. By training every child like a future astronaut we can empower them to shape their future, starting today.
If you are in Pori, Finland between 16.-20.7.2018 don’t forget to stop by the SuomiAreena Lapsiparkki for some out of this world fun! Alternatively join us virtually from anywhere in the world and be a part of the Fun Academy Future Astronaut Week.
Access the Fun Academy Future Astronauts program and discover Fun Learning ideas for FREE.