Students Design Rockets and Race Rovers at Space Center Houston

Release Date: Feb. 19, 2016


Watch 300 Houston-area middle-school students build a robotic hand, bounce in gravity chairs and work together with hands-on science-based activities. Students will explore the center’s interactive exhibits and see how science comes to life in human space exploration.

In partnership with Space Center Houston, the Houston Rockets and the Houston Community College System are teaching science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) to youth through the fundamentals of rocketry. The hands-on learning experiences engage students to think about a future STEM career.

The program, Rocket Science, includes a half-day STEM workshop at Space Center Houston and culminates with “Rockets Launch Day,” teaching students to work together on fun science-based activities and building critical-thinking skills.

Rocket Science teaches students about the laws of physics and explores Newton’s laws of motion with a variety of hands-on activities, educational webinars and discussions with NASA experts who actively are working to further human space exploration. Over the course of several weeks, students will have fun launching rockets; learn about rocket fuels and their importance to deep space exploration; practice rocket staging to simulate a multi-stage rocket launch; and construct a rocket-powered racing car.


Space Center Houston, 1601 NASA Parkway, Houston, TX 77058


Feb. 23

8:30-9 a.m.

  • Watch students assemble for a kickoff presentation.

9 a.m.-noon

  • Students will build a robotic hand.
  • Youngsters soar high in gravity chairs to feel weightlessness of space.
  • Students race rovers and collect rock samples.
  • Students design a model 747 and shuttle carrier aircraft.
  • Students build a paper rocket.
  • See students meet former Houston Rocket Maurice “Mo” Taylor.

Possible Interviews:

  • LaTanya Miles, Space Center Houston education supervisor
  • Meridyth Moore, Space Center Houston public relations manager
  • Sarah Joseph, Houston Rockets community relations director

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The Manned Space Flight Education Foundation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit space museum with an extensive science education program. The cornerstone of its science education mission is Space Center Houston, which USA Today called “The Big Draw” in the greater Houston area with nearly 1 million visitors annually and a $73 million annual economic impact on the greater Houston area. Space Center Houston is Houston’s first and only Smithsonian Affiliate and the Official Visitor Center of NASA Johnson Space Center.  The center draws more than 100,000 teachers and students annually from around the world. For more information, go to

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