STEAM-based educational tools spark excitement around space exploration
MELBOURNE, Fla. – ShareSpace Education, a key organization within the Aldrin Family Foundation (AFF), will host an assembly focusing on the Giant Mars Map™ at St. Bernard’s Catholic School in Omaha, Nebraska on Thursday, April 25, for 3rd to 8th grade students. Donated to 50 schools around the country earlier this year, the Giant Mars Map™ package promotes STEAM education and prepare the next generation of explorers.
“Giant Mars Maps are a means for sparking creativity in kids while they sit, stand, walk, play and learn together,” said Dr. Andrew Aldrin, president of AFF. “Our aim is to put maps into the hands of schools where we think they can do the most good, especially in underserved communities. Our goal is to ensure all kids get the chance to be exposed to STEAM using the excitement of space exploration.”
Map packages are being distributed to 58 American schools in 23 states, including: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Maine, Massachusetts, Nebraska, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, South Carolina, Texas, Washington and West Virginia. Two international Department of Defense schools in Italy and Germany were also recipients. The donation is collectively valued at $300,000.
Each package includes a 25 foot x 25 foot map, 10 Welcome to Mars books, the Mars Map Curriculum package developed in collaboration with Purdue University, and access to in-person and online program training from the ShareSpace Foundation. The value of each Giant Mars Map™ package is valued at $5,000.
Each year, AFF works with donors to make Giant Mars Map™ packages available for distribution. Individual schools, school districts and informal education organizations submit applications, which are reviewed by an independent team of judges. Map recipients are selected with the goal of reaching people and places where the map can be used as an authentic teaching tool to help children develop an understanding for real-world, STEAM-based concepts using the Red Planet as the focal point.
About the Aldrin Family Foundation
The Aldrin Family Foundation (AFF) strives to cultivate the next generation of space leaders, entrepreneurs and explorers who will extend human habitation beyond the Earth to the Moon and Mars. AFF’s STEAM-based educational tools, curriculum and programs span from a child’s first classroom experience through graduate school and professional programs. This vertical pathway unites explorers at all levels to learn from each other’s vision for space, ultimately creating the first generation of Martians.
About ShareSpace Education
ShareSpace Education, one of the key organizations within the Aldrin Family Foundation, is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to cultivating children’s passion for science, technology, engineering, arts and math (STEAM) by providing innovative, interactive educational tools to schools, teachers and information educations throughout the United States and abroad. Founded in 2016 by Apollo 11 astronaut Buzz Aldrin, ShareSpace has reached more than 300,000 children and continues to grow its impact each year.
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