Citywalk News for October

“Find Your Mission”


When you think about planning a trip beyond Earth, you likely envision that happening a long time from now in a galaxy far, far away. Surprise: you can experience that today, in Ferguson, at 205 Brotherton Lane.


While you know the schools that exist within the Ferguson CityWalk boundaries: McCluer South-Berkely High School, Vogt Elementary School and Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic School, you may not be aware of a completely different type of educational experience here in Ferguson: The Challenger Learning Center. The Ferguson location is not just the only Challenger Learning Center in St. Louis – it is the only such entity in Missouri.


The center seeks to spark a passion for a lifetime engagement with STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) through simulated space missions and science education programs that are so hands-on that the word “simulation” is inadequate to fully capture the nature of that experience. I visited The Challenger Learning Center on September 12. My first surprise was seeing a staff member wearing a NASA flight suit. Soon we entered Mission Control. Our tour progressed to entering the space station lab through and air lock. Director Tasmyn (Tahz-min) Scarl Front said they don’t describe the experience as a field trip, because while this is an outing, there is deep educational focus. During their “mission,” students realize and use skills that are necessary for lifelong success. For example, students often encounter some type emergency” that requires them to use critical thinking and creative problem-solving skills. The students have all the resources they need to solve the problem, but sometimes need confidence. When they ask staff to help, they hear: “This is your mission. You are the expert in your field and you can do this.”


This is not only a wonderful opportunity for school kids. There are programs for the general public, birthday party packages, corporate programs and summer camps, to name a few opportunities that are available for interplanetary travel in your own backyard.


The Challenger Learning Center-St. Louis opened in November of 2003. It is part of the Challenger Center for Space Science Education, an international not-for-profit education organization founded in April 1986 by the families of the astronauts tragically lost during the Challenger space shuttle mission. This location is part of a growing network of over forty Challenger Learning Centers located throughout the world. The Center serves groups throughout the greater St. Louis region. If you want to know more, contact the Challenger Learning Center at 314-524-3490 or check out the website at www.challengerstl.org.


Meanwhile, we’re waiting with bated breath to welcome several new businesses to Ferguson CityWalk. However, it isn’t official until the paperwork is complete. Keep your eyes on Ferguson CityWalk for these developments!

CONTACT

FERGUSON CITYWALK
110 Church Street
Ferguson, MO 63135
(314) 524-5197
citywalk@fergusoncity.com

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