NASA Astronaut Talks With Local Kids

Some area students explore the outer edges of the universe, without leaving the planet earth.

A NASA educator paid a visit to Roberts Elementary giving kids a first hand look at space exploration and helping them overcome their fears felt after the Space Shuttle Columbia tragedy.

Most kids, at one point in their young lives, dream of becoming an astronaut, of exploring the final frontier.

"Yeah, that would be cool, I'd do that, be the first man to do something, be famous, I'd do that,” says Javier Crawford of Roberts Elementary.

NASA educator Jim Gerard is encouraging these kids at Roberts Elementary to take that step towards walking on the moon.

But he's also showing them how to explore outer space, while staying grounded.

"For every astronaut we send up there are thousands of technical and engineers on the ground, that make it possible,” says NASA Educator Jim Gerard.

Before the students can suit up for their journey, suit up for their journey, Gerard teaches them how to eat, breathe and even use the bathroom in a space suit.

Besides the basics, associated with space travel, and how to overcome the fears they felt watching the shuttle Columbia disaster.

Even though Gerard has never taken flight himself, he hopes one day these kids will be the ones to build a commercial space

So he can blast off to a galaxy far far away.

NASA educator Jim Gerard is traveling throughout Florida and Georgia promoting the opening of The Challenger Learning Center.