Buzz Lightyear will be on the next space shuttle mission, set to launch on Saturday, May 31. No kidding. “We are thrilled that Buzz’s lifelong dream of space travel finally will come true thanks to NASA,” said Jay Rasulo, chairman of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts. “This launch fulfills his dream, and we hope it will inspire countless children to stay interested in science and believe in their own dreams.” NASA announced today a new educational initiative partnership with Disney theme parks, which will kick off with space shuttle Discovery’s launch. A 12-inch-tall Buzz Lightyear action figure will be carried aboard the shuttle as part of the partnership to encourage students to pursue studies in science, technology and mathematics, one of NASA’s main educational goals.
Beginning on May 31, new online games will be available on NASA’s Kids Club which will feature Buzz Lightyear. And it sounds like NASA’s “Toys in Space” program might be dusted off or revived.
Disney’s Youth Educational Series and NASA have developed an online program known as the Space Ranger Education Series. It includes educational games for students, as well as materials for educators to download and integrate into their classroom curriculum.
“NASA is excited to help students understand the science and engineering currently underway on the International Space Station,” said Joyce Winterton, NASA assistant administrator for Education.
“The educational games and resources from this partnership will allow students to explore the science and math behind space exploration with a beloved character.”