Press Release

Book signing with Scott Carpenter

By SpaceRef Editor
January 14, 2003
Filed under , ,

Original astronaut to give science teachers “The Right Stuff”

The model rocketry teacher training at the Children’s Science Explorium in Boca Raton’s Sugar Sand Park just got a boost: an appearance by Mercury astronaut Scott Carpenter, one of the seven original “Right Stuff” astronauts. Capt. Carpenter will join the teachers for breakfast on Saturday, January 18th at 9 AM to offer a first-hand account of flying three times around the Earth . Teachers will then learn the physics of rockets and missiles from Newton to NASA, with hands-on lab activities that include building, launching and tracking model rockets.

On the morning of the 18th, Capt. Carpenter kicks off the brunch and launch of model rockets by shaking hands, posing for pictures, and sharing his first-hand account of piloting an Atlas rocket and the Aurora 7 capsule on May 24, 1962. Anyone wishing to join the breakfast is welcome, but advance reservations are required. Call #561.347.3913 for reservations; space is limited to 40. The $35 cost includes a pancake and egg banquet and a signed copy of Carpenter’s autobiography “For Spacious Skies.”

The Saturday, January 18, 2003 workshop combines science, reading and history. It features first-person narrative of historical events told by one who lived them, physics and aeronautics instruction, and the construction and firing of Estes model rockets. Erich Landstrom, a science teacher at Boynton Beach Community High School and NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory Solar System Educator, will facilitate this workshop guaranteed to ignite the imagination. Brunch and launch workshop is five hours long, beginning at 9 AM and ending at 2 PM. All eligible participating teachers will receive a signed copy of Carpenter’s autobiography “For Spacious Skies,” an Estes model rocket kit, classroom-ready lesson plans, 5 in-service points, and a stipend.

The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) selected Carpenter on April 9, 1959 as having the “right stuff” to be one of the original seven astronauts for the manned Mercury missions. Carpenter flew the 2nd American manned orbital flight on May 24, 1962. He piloted his Aurora 7 capsule through 3 revolutions of the Earth, reaching a maximum altitude of 164 miles, and landing after nearly 5 hours. Capt. Carpenter’s book tour for his autobiography “For Spacious Skies: The Uncommon Journey of a Mercury Astronaut” stops in Florida during January.

The Children’s Science Explorium is 1,700 square feet of fascinating hands-on interactive exhibits and science programs that focus on the physical science. These exhibits challenge thinking and enhance understanding of the everyday sciences. The Explorium is located inside Sugar Sand Community Center, 300 South Military Trail [], and is maintained through the joint efforts of the Greater Boca Raton Beach and Park District and the City of Boca Raton.

The goal of the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory Solar System Educators Program [] is to inspire America’s students, create learning opportunities, and enlighten inquisitive minds by engaging them in the Solar System exploration efforts conducted by NASA. The heart of the program is a large nationwide network of highly motivated educators. These Solar System Educators lead workshops around the country that show teachers how to successfully incorporate NASA materials and research into their classes. Solar System Educators complete a minimum of 3 outreach workshops reaching at least 100 teachers each year. Solar System Educators are comprised of current K-12 educators, and educators from the informal education community of science centers and planetariums. Erich Landstrom was selected during a nationwide search in August 2000, while Director of Astronomy Education at the South Florida Science Museum.

SpaceRef staff editor.