Space School Musical Video SeriesYoutube video


Overview

Join teenager Hannah on a trip through the solar system in this "hip-hopera" that uses song and dance to introduce the planets, moons, asteroids and more. Download the lyrics for students to learn and perform or just play the videos in class.

Materials

Management

This video series may be watched as a whole or in parts for curricular support.

Additionally, Space School Musical may be produced as a play for performance. Production has been designed to be as intuitive as possible, requiring next to no producing, directing or performing experience. In the simplest terms, just watch the videos over and over and listen to the music over and over until the performers know their parts, their songs, and their dances. The students themselves can direct, act, make the costumes, etc. You may choose to do the entire play or a few selected numbers; it all depends on what works for you, your students and your structure.

The downloadable complete production guide includes such sections as How to Make the Set, How to Make the Costumes, Useful Theatrical Terms, Lyrics, and many more helpful tidbits to make this process as easy as possible. Also, download the Teaching Tips and Glossary for more help.

If your school has a music or drama teacher, involve them in the production!

Background

Over the past 50 years, NASA has sent its magnificent flying machines to explore the vast expanse of our solar system. Beginning with the Mariner 4 flyby of Mars in 1965 to the recent New Horizons flyby of Pluto in 2015 and countless missions in between, we now have close-up views of all eight planets, two dwarf planets, and many marvelous moons, asteroids and comets. How are they alike and how are they different? What have we learned, and what new questions arise from every image returned to Earth?

The performing arts offer a powerful way to engage students in science. Research suggests that content-rich songs enhance student understanding of science concepts by helping them develop content-based vocabulary, providing examples and explanations of concepts, and connecting to personal and situational interest in a topic. 

NASA’s Discovery Program and KidTribe collaborated to create “Space School Musical,” an innovative multi-disciplinary learning experience that brings the solar system to life. Students learn about the planets, moons, and other solar system objects, combining science with music, memorable lyrics and simple choreography. It is designed to reach children who learn in a variety of different ways. 

The musical introduces young learners to basic space-science concepts in an engaging and non-intimidating way while also promoting creativity and offering students many ways to express themselves. The lessons encourage students to develop critical-thinking and decision-making skills. Performing the musical gives students opportunities for teamwork, collaboration and sharing their learning.


Procedures

  1. Show the videos to the class in succession (total run time 30 minutes) or show one or more as time permits.

  2. Discuss the content as appropriate to grade level curriculum.

  3. Consider having the students learn one or more songs to perform (see How to Produce the Play).


Extensions

An academic, arts, fitness and life skills activity exists for each of the nine songs, and is available via download. These activities are especially appropriate for out-of-school time.