Children can now learn about space through board games, computer games, and a fairytale book
This summer, the UT Tartu Observatory launched board games, computer games and a fairytale book, which will help to explain the exciting world of space to the smallest members of the family as well as children who already go to school. The book and the games are in Estonian.
All of the materials were executed as a part of the science popularization project of the Estonian Research Council. The games and book are suitable for kindergarten children and pupils from primary to even high school. The computer games and book are available for everyone virtually, but the board game sets will be handed out to 100 Estonian schools and kindergartens. The materials could also be used in after school clubs' activities as well as help children learn at home through having fun.
As the UT Tartu Observatory is the only research institution in Estonia that has long history in observing the Earth from space and the space from Earth as well as developing space technology, many kindergartens and schools were interested in the result of the project. The games and book are related to the research fields of the observatory: astronomy, remote sensing, and space technology.
The main character of the book and the games is a ray of sun called Päiku ("Päike" in Estonian means 'the Sun'). Päiku visits all the planets of the Solar System and gives an overview of the system, space in general, and astronomy in a way that is understandable and fun for children.
Children starting from the age of two can now get to know space through the fairytale book called "Päikesekiire seiklused kosmoses" (The Adventures of a Ray of Sun in Space), which includes fun illustrations. The main character Päiku visits all the planets of the Solar System and introduces the system in a way suitable for small children. The book is available virtually.
For children starting from the age of four, two board games have been created. The games have unraveled the topics of remote sensing, space technology, and astronomy, that can seem complicated at first.
Older children and teenagers can also learn by playing computer games about remote sensing, space technology and astronomy. The computer games are available virtually. Therefore they could be used to brighten up school lessons and support the syllabus.
Virtual materials (in Estonian)