Osage Nation students will have the opportunity to hear from the astronaut crew members aboard the International Space Station during a Nov. 23 virtual meeting.
NASA astronauts will answer questions from Osage students from the community during a live event scheduled that morning at the Osage County Fairgrounds, according to a news release. The event is titled “Children Talk to Stars” and community members are invited to attend and participate in STEAM-related activities and enjoy refreshments.
Nicole Mann, the first Native American woman in space, will be among the space station crew talking to the students. The event’s STEAM-related activities will be sponsored by the ON Education Department.
“This experience is something our students will remember for the rest of their lives,” Daposka Ahnkodapi Superintendent Patrick Martin said in a statement. “We have organized a variety of space-related activities leading up to this event starting with a rocket launch this summer with the Osage Nation STEAM program. The kids are incredibly excited about this opportunity and we encourage the community can come experience this with us.”
Linking students directly to astronauts aboard the space station provides unique, authentic experiences designed to enhance student learning, performance, and interest in STEM, the release stated. Astronauts living in space on the orbiting laboratory communicate with NASA’s Mission Control Center in Houston 24 hours a day through the Near Space Network Tracking and Data Relay Satellites.
“Our focus is to empower these children with the knowledge that they can do anything they put their minds to, then support them along the way,” Education Department Director Mary Wildcat said in the release. “This event really embodies what we’re trying to do here and we appreciate that NASA shares our mission to educate and inspire Native youth.” Daposka Ahnkodapi students are frequent viewers of NASA TV, a website that provides live coverage of launches, spacewalks and other missions.
“Osage Nation is committed to giving our youth every opportunity possible to put them on the path to success,” Principal Chief Geoffrey Standing Bear said in a statement. “A huge thank you to our leaders in education and NASA for understanding how impactful this experience will be for our students.”
Community members planning on attending are asked to RSVP here: https://forms.osagenation-nsn.gov/view.php?id=102930 Those unable to attend can watch this event on NASA TV or stream from the NASA website. The approximate start time will be announced closer to the event date.