This past week, we attended a conference at Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas. We got an inside look at how NASA sends people to space, heard from Astronauts and other amazing aerospace professionals, and got many ideas for cool space simulations to do prior to our contact with ARISS.
Our 3 day adventure began by talking to Astronauts Joe Acaba (who was streamed in from aboard the International Space Station, in low earth orbit) and Dottie Metcalf-Lindenburger, another teacher-turned-astronaut who facilitated the call here on Earth. Check it out:
Both Joe and Dottie stressed how important skills like communication, flexibility, adaptivity, and creativity were in space. Astronaut Joe also stressed the importance of asking questions and working hard, even when it's not easy, "Ask for help. Don't give up on yourself- you can make it happen. Some things might be harder for you than other people, but there's no reason why you can't make it work." He said that he was never the top of his class, but he worked and studied hard, and that got him to where he is today (space!)
We can't wait to talk to the astronauts again with ARISS!
Then, it was our turn to train like astronauts! Ms. Manfre and Mrs. Craven did a scuba diving challenge, while Ms. Imhoff toured the Neutral Buoyancy Lab, which is where the astronauts train for Spacewalks and their work on the International Space Station. It's one of the largest pools in the world! Check it out:
In the afternoon, we got a chance to hear from Dr. John B Charles, who is Director of NASA's Human Exploration Research and Planning.
Tomorrow, we will check back in with an update on NASA Robotics, see the astronaut training facility in Building 9, catch a glimpse of Houston from the sky, and learn all about the early capsules used to take humans to the Moon!