Thales Navigation, leading global provider of GPS solutions including the Magellan consumer line and Thales Navigation professional GPS products, announced an effort that is bringing space science down to earth for school children. Thales Navigation has donated Magellan GPS receivers and software as part of its partnership with the Federation of Galaxy Explorers, a national non-profit organization that furthers children's education in space-related science and engineering, both inside and outside the classroom.
Teachers say students are getting a better grasp on space science now that they are using Magellan handheld GPS receivers. To date, Thales Navigation's Magellan GPS receivers have been used to teach over 200 children who are part of the Galaxy Explorers program or students in Maryland's Prince William County school district.
Through the use of the Magellan GPS receivers, children are learning about the Global Positioning Satellite System, how it works, and its applications. The training includes using the receivers in field exercises outside the classroom to locate pre-placed markers and objects. "We are excited to provide young people with the opportunity to learn about the wonders of space science through hands-on experiences," said Dean Senner, president and CEO of Thales Navigation. "Our Magellan GPS receivers and mapping software are fun and easy tools for helping children and adults understand how satellites and other space-related developments can benefit our daily lives. We are proud to partner with the Federation of Galaxy Explorers in furthering our commitment to education and the future of space science."
With a mission to educate, guide, and prepare the next generation to accept the challenge of expanding humanity's presence in space, the Federation of Galaxy Explorers launched pilot programs this year, and is continuing to develop pilots around the country. The organization plans to train hundreds of students in GPS technology using Magellan GPS products over the next several months. "The Magellan receivers donated by Thales Navigation have had a tremendous positive effect on the children in our program," said Nicholas Eftimiades, founder and chairman of the Federation of Galaxy Explorers. "The GPS receivers ensure that Galaxy Explorers gain an understanding of the four segments of GPS, and how a GPS receiver calculates position and velocity, in addition to the many military and commercial applications of GPS.
Teachers have commented that the equipment has enabled them to teach their students more effectively than ever. We look forward to continuing our partnership to make a difference in children's lives." Similar to the Girl Scouts of the USA and Boy Scouts of America, the Federation of Galaxy Explorers program is designed for students in grades three through 11 who participate in monthly meetings and field trips. Galaxy Explorers perform fun learning exercises and projects in five primary categories: Earth Science, Space Science, Engineering, Rocketry, and Space Citizenship. Members receive medals and awards for successful completion of work in each category to help build the child's self-esteem through achievement and recognition.
For more information about the Federation of Galaxy Explorers and its programs, see www.foge.org. For more information on Thales Navigation and its Magellan GPS products, see www.thalesnavigation.com or www.magellangps.com.