Montage of our solar system

NASA's "Space Place" -- an educational program and Web site designed for young students -- has recently welcomed its 100th partner and first aquarium, the Newport Aquarium in Newport, Ky.

Space Place, developed by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory's New Millennium Program, provides display materials and hands-on activities to its partner museums and libraries -- and now an aquarium -- in 43 states. The program has been targeted to include small- and mid-sized cities that do not have major space exhibits.

"Space Place takes NASA to the heartland," said Nancy Leon, outreach coordinator and producer of Space Place's web site. "We want to encourage the natural curiosity that children have for learning and developing new interests."

The Web site features a map and list of all the Space Place partners, in addition to hands-on experiments. "Dr. Marc's Amazing Facts," a set of space science questions with detailed explanations geared towards students written by Dr. Marc Rayman, JPL's Deep Space 1 chief mission engineer, is another highlight of the site.

Partners set up bulletin boards in their display areas with space-themed items such as press clippings and children's drawings. Started last year, the Space Place's award-winning Web site is located at

Materials provided to Space Place partners include the latest NASA mission posters, lithographs and postcards, in addition to information and activities that can be printed from the Web site. Space Place is designed to interest and involve students in science and space exploration. The Web site offers learning activities such as a recipe for "El Niño Pudding," along with an explanation, with graphics, of the climate condition called El Niño. A downloadable board game offers an imaginary intergalactic adventure to a black hole in "Spacey Things to Do." "Space Science in Action" offers experiments such as launching "rockets" and solving extraterrestrial riddles.

JPL is managed for NASA by the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena.

News Media Contact

Nancy Lovato (818) 354-0474