After just two weeks in space, it looks like a rookie Canadian astronaut David Saint Jacques feels comfortable in microgravity. On December 18, he read the new e-book in space, while "launching" it on the ceiling of the International Space Station, embracing pretending asteroids and making creative rocket sounds and exclamations of excitement on the road.
The father of three little children is highlighted in a new book by the Canadian Space Agency, dubbed the "Research Club". Saint Jacques read it in French, but the book is also available in English. Both the English and French versions are free of charge on the CSA website. The book is also available for the iOS and Google Play store. You can check it here.
Reading, whose earthly component was hosted at ADS's headquarters in Longyear, Quebec (near Montreal) attracted 125 students from the former primary school of Saint-Jacques, the school of de Sants-and-Montreal. CSA also broadcasts the event through a lifetime. [Canada Celebrates Launch of First Astronaut in 6 Years]
The image book follows the fictional adventures of the Research Club, composed of children Nico, Lyle, Matthias and Xhemah and their dog Chevy, "the most exciting dog in the universe – or at least in his neighborhood."
The club decided to build a rocket to visit Saint Jacques in space after suddenly appeared what children thought of as a broken television. In the book, Saint-Jacques inspire children with a short speech that ends with their motto "Dare to explore".
Children's "brightest spacecraft ever visited the universe" encounters many fun adventures on the road, including the International Space Station, Robotic Canadarm2 and Northern Lights (one of the research priorities for Canada, the northern country).
Part of the greater pressure for literacy
Saint Jacques and his wife, Veronica Morin, were reading at night to their three young children when he was on the ground. Since Saint Jacques wanted to continue the tradition of space, CSA took the opportunity to create an event where more children could participate.
The book is designed for adults aged 4 to 8 and includes children who are "pre-readers" (children who do not know how to read but can be told the book) and children who can read. To ensure that the text is appropriate for the age, CSA has teamed up with a Vancouver-based firm called Pug Pharm, which has experience in creating children's reading products, CSA officials say.
Setting up in the space station can sometimes be a bit slow, so Saint-Jacques had a paper-based version (with key images) just in case the iPad application did not work, ASA spokesman Annie Belenger, who is part of a field team assigned of the Saint-Jacques mission, told Space.com.
This event is just one of a network of activities that Saint-Jacques is involved in bringing love to the literacy and science of children. He participated in the Canada Science Week Literacy Week last September. Beginning in October, the agency started the Wanted: Creative Writers competition for all Canadians aged 9 and up, divided into three age categories (9 to 12 years, 12 to 15 and 16 years old and more). The deadline is December 31 and you can get more details on this link. Saint Jacques can read some of the space records.
CSA also offers opportunities for science with Saint Jacques. For the initiators Little Inventors, the children have attracted possible scientific experiments for space; the match was closed on December 21. Children can also participate in ongoing collaboration with a non-profit talk-talk science to measure environmental conditions in a room or other joint project with the European Space Agency and the Jeunesse Kids Code to develop Astro Pi programs for space station computers.
And there are many more activities to come, including a children's game and an opportunity to measure radiation (as the children did before the mission of Chris Hudfield in 2012-13). The full list of mission activities past, present and future is available on this CSS website.
A unique moment
Saint Jacques is the first Canadian astronaut to visit the space station of Hudfield. He arrived in the orbital complex on December 3, along with the rest of the Expedition 58 crew – the NASA astronaut Anna McClane and the Russian cosmonaut Oleg Kononenko.
Belenar said the agency uses Canada's ability in space to promote science among students, while interest is high. The impact is already considerable; The "Let's Talk With Science" initiative will only touch 1000 classrooms, she said. [Best Kids’ Space Books for the Holidays]
"It really shows how a space mission can inspire students to learn more about space and stem cells [science, technology, engineering and math] in general, "she said.
While Sen Jacques was introduced to another public relations event, one of his projects in orbit will participate in nine Canadian experiments, ranging from scientific research to technological demonstration. You can read more about these experiments in this Space.com article; according to "CSA Twitter", Saint-Jacques has already worked for the experiments "Vectra" and "MARROW".
These Canadian studies are just a few of the more than 200 experiments typical crews of the space station perform at the top of the maintenance and other operations of the space station.
The Canadian e-book is the latest in several children's books that made it to the space station. In recent years, a non-profit organization called "Space Story" sent several children's printing books into the orbiting complex, which the astronauts read aloud. You can read about some of their past books on this article from 2015.
Follow us on Twitter @Spacedotcom and Facebook. Original article on Space.com.