Tuesday, November 30, 2010

The Boy's Book of Jets (1954)

This is primarily a book about aviation. Although the title seems not to promise much space flight there are some great pictures hidden inside.

The Boy's Book of Jets. London : Thames Publishing Co. (94 p.) 27 cm. 1954.

For example it has this illustration of building a "Bonestellian" moon ship. A very nice reinterpretation of a Bonestell painting.

This cut-away painting of the rocket is also worth hunting down.

And this color rocket painting (touring the solar system) on the inner dust pages.

Since this blog is really about children and space flight I love any illustration of children in space looking back on our home planet.

Although some of you probably like this one too with it's cut-away of a generic guided-missile.

In some way this one is the best in the book with its combination of the 1950s car and the futuristic space car that takes you to your rocket. See you in December!

Friday, November 12, 2010

Introducing Children to Space: The Lincoln Plan (1966)

 I have happy memories of learning about space in school. A number of my friend's dads worked at JPL (The Jet Propulsion Laboratory) in Pasadena. We happily absorbed visions of the exciting space age.  Finding this book is like finding a photo album of my classroom in those "golden" years.

Introducing children to space: the Lincoln plan.  United States. National Aeronautics and Space Administration.; Nebraska. University Teachers College. (1966) 159 p. illus., map. 27 cm. NASA-EP-36

The Lincoln plan was Lincoln, Nebraska's curriculum plan for how to bring spaceflight ideas into the elementary school classroom  It was eventually published as a NASA educational publication. Like many early NASA publications it is online here: http://hdl.handle.net/2060/19840069191

I remember having a current events board like this in my classroom.  I also remember well classroom lined with space posters to help us think about what the next frontier would be.

It is really fun to see that my memories of being immersed in space stuff are not just an exageration. We really did sit around in class and watch launches and other events on television. We thought we were witnessing history.
And we really did dream of the future. We thought by 1999 we would be out in space ourselves.  We were sure that the exploration of the Moon was just the beginning for us.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Adventures in Space (1955)

This is another of those awesome books that bowls you over when you see it. If I had seen this as a child I would have carried it around until the binding was shot.

Kepps, Gerald. Illustrated by Branton and Teece, I. Adventures in Space. London : Ward, Lock and Co Ltd. (44 p.) 26 cm. (1955)

This amazing early space book covers the solar system, how rockets work, construction of rockets and space stations, and journeys to the Moon, and the planets. Wonderful paintings of rockets, space stations, a Moon base, exploration of the outer planets. Text is very simple with many full page illustrations.

It is a children's annual because it also has six two page comic strips: 3 on the exploration of space, the Moon, and rockets, and 3 fictional stories about a space explorer, "Pluton, the Space Boy".

I love this version of the Moonbase. It actually reminds me of shopping malls I've seen.

Sorry this strip is too small to read. I love the Annual archetype of children has friends with a rocket, children see the Earth from space, children experience weightlessness, children land on the Moon, and children learn about space suits and walk on the Moon. I have seen variations of this strip several times.

A beautiful (and proper) circular space station.

A great 3 stage rocket. I love that so many illustrations are double-page.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Conquest of the Moon (1969)

A quick one today:
Sutton, Felix and Maurer, Alvin. Illustrated by Mora, Raul Mina and NASA. Conquest of the Moon. New York: Wonder Books. (59 p.) 29 cm. (1969)

Arranged in a question and answer format and reusing material from the "How and Why Wonder Books" series. It answers questions about what is known about the Moon and the history of the efforts to explore the Moon both manned and unmanned.