Space Playground Lesson Plan
In this unit, for K-6, the class designs a playground
for children living a space settlement.
Unlike Earth playgrounds, a space playgound
is a weightless environment.
Most Earth playground equipment depends on gravity:
slides, swings, etc.
In space, weightlessness brings opportunities and
By addressing these opportunities and problems, kids
have an opportunity to learn physics, space science and engineering
at an elementary level.
The teacher must familiarize themselves with the
basic physics of weightlessness.
This can be done by viewing videos of astronauts
in 0g and thinking
about the issues involved.
results of this unit
at the Santa Cruz Children's School.
This lesson has been tried once. Doubtless
it can be improved. Send suggestions
of astronauts having fun in 0g.
Ask the children what the
astronauts are doing. When one of them answers
"playing" or something similar say "Yes, they're
Then tell the class that someday kids will live
in space and need playgrounds to have fun in.
No one has ever built a space playground and
they, the kids, are experts at having fun.
Then lead a discussion of what sorts of
equipment they want in their playground,
the games they could play there, and
how it could be built.
- Take the class to a playground and
let them play for awhile. Then gather
the class in a convenient spot to discuss each
piece of playground equipment and
how it would be different in 0g. Do the same for games.
- Have the children do the following:
- Draw a picture of a piece of space playground equipment.
- Use Legos or other 3D construction materials
to make pieces of equipment.
- Tell a story about or describe part of the space playground.
Have an adult write the story down.
- Send your experiences and what the kids did to Al Globus,
MS T27A-1, NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, CA 94035-1000.
Space Playground Home Page
Authors: Al Globus
and Adele Gardner (AGard44580@aol.com).