Develop an interactive app for children that uses smart phone and tablet sensory to locate the Moon (any time of the day, even below horizon), which unlocks current lunar data (phase, distance, etc), and then presents the user options for reading a "Moon" related story, view space agency photos and videos, and/or fun facts about the Moon. The goal of this challenge is edutainment and raising awareness about lunar missions around the world.
Through discussion and testing our Kid On The Moon prototype with kids, we put together our impactful experience:
We are starting a new chapter in human space exploration. We are going to Mars! To support NASA's ambitious long-term goals we need new generations of astronauts, engineers, and many other inspired and skilled people. We also want everyone in general to stay curious about solar exploration. Only if we have broad and ongoing support, will our journey to Mars be a success.
We transport children to the moon and beyond. We personalize a child’s astronaut experience with their name, picture, and mission badge. A pledge makes it all official. Our new astronauts are ready for lift-off and board the spacecraft.
After the thrilling countdown and ride on the rocket, they find themselves on the moon. The child embarks on a self-guided exploration of the moon by moving around and touching hotspots which lead to different places on the moon, information, videos and games, including photos and sounds from the Apollo mission. When the child is done exploring, they can touch the Earth to return back home. They can steer their spaceship safely back to Earth by tilting the tablet.
Back at mission control, they can see their earned mission badges and choose future missions. Parents will receive emails with ideas for offline activities that further fuel curiosity and exploration of space. Some ideas are watching the moon in the sky at different phases, making a crater in a sandbox, space-related arts and crafts, or participating in a local space-related event.
The app can be expanded with more content and games around the moon as well as missions to other places in our solar system. We would add offline activities as well with a focus on space sciences, games, and arts.
The app may be the launchpad for other apps, aimed at children of different ages. These apps can then be made more relevant for different age groups through more complex content and a tone and style that resonates with a particular age group.
Notifications, emails, and social media will keep the connection we create with NASA strong.
Kid On The Moon will foster curiosity and inspire the next generation of space explorers.
The Kid On The Moon prototype lives here:
Twitter: https://twitter.com/KidOnTheMoonApp #KidOnTheMoonYoutube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=twKcOmnVf-I