Camp KSC® Activity Descriptions
All Camp KSC® students explore and discover during five days of activities throughout Kennedy Space Center. Specific activities will vary based on the camper’s team, but camp involves the following elements.
Astronaut Training Experience (ATX)®
Campers may train in three areas: Launch Operations, Mars Operations and Microgravity Operations. Please see height and weight restrictions below for these simulations. For the Launch training, campers will be assigned a position in Mission Control or in the Orion spacecraft. The teams will be scored on their ability to work together to launch and dock their spacecraft while dealing with one or more emergencies. In the Mars Surface Exploration training area, campers will take turns landing and driving on Mars in full-motion simulators and/or walking on Mars using virtual reality equipment. In Microgravity Operations training, campers will strap in to our one-of-a-kind microgravity chairs to experience the sensation of working in a frictionless environment. Throughout all of these experiences, campers will guide one another through the steps needed to complete different missions.
All Astronaut Training Experience Simulators: For safety, you should be in good health and free from high blood pressure, heart, back or neck problems, motion sickness, or other conditions that could be aggravated by this experience. Expectant mothers should not participate.
Land and Drive on Mars Simulator: Those who have had recent surgery or injury should not ride. Participants must be at least 51” tall.
Walk on Mars Virtual Reality: If you experience seizures, loss of awareness, eye strain, altered vision or other visual abnormalities, dizziness, disorientation, or any symptom related to motion sickness, you should not participate. Guests who have pre-existing binocular vision abnormalities should not participate.
Mars Base 1
Campers will complete a variety of activities on the Red Planet. In the Base Operations Center, campers work together to sustain the health and safety of the Mars Base following the crash landing of an uncrewed supply ship. In the Engineering Lab, they program and operate a swarm of robots to clear debris from solar panels, generating power for the base. And, in our Botany Lab, campers learn to grow vegetables using indoor gardening techniques.
Throughout the week, campers explore the many different programs NASA and its partners have created to allow humanity to live and work in the space closest to Earth. To gain a better understanding of NASA’s ongoing commitment to both environmental stewardship and global technology, campers participate in guided interactive explorations, scavenger hunts, STEM challenges and immersive simulators. Some of the activity areas include the Rocket Garden, Heroes & Legends featuring the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame®, Journey to Mars: Explorers Wanted, NASA Now, Shuttle Launch Experience® and the exhibits in Space Shuttle Atlantis®, weather permitting. In addition, campers explore the all new Gateway: The Deep Space Launch Complex®.
To the Moon and Beyond
Campers also move beyond Earth’s gravity into deep space. They will board Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex tour buses to visit the the Apollo/Saturn V Center for shows and activities in the facility. Students stand in awe of the massive Saturn V Moon rocket, learning about the past and future of exploring other planetary bodies in our solar system. Plus, on the way to the attraction, campers can see the massive Vehicle Assembly Building out the bus window while learning about this operational launch facility.
Engineering Design Challenges
NASA would not be what it is today without cutting-edge engineering. Therefore, campers will participate in several hands-on engineering design challenges appropriate to their grade level throughout the week. After learning some basic engineering principles, campers work in teams to follow the Engineering Design Process (ask, imagine, plan, create, test, improve) to solve various challenges. Specific challenges change from year to year and team to team.
Using teamwork and STEM skills (science, technology, engineering and mathematics), campers think critically, communicate and problem solve while completing different tasks. Students of all ages learn that STEM skills can be fun and rewarding. Specific STEM challenges also vary from year to year and from team to team.
Please note: Kennedy Space Center is a working launch facility with many security restrictions – activities may be changed without notice due to launch schedules and daily operations or weather.
Space Chase! Explore & Learn
Challenge students with engaging questions and fantastic images during three different missions!
- Space Chase! is available for free in the app stores. Download it before your visit!
- Begin this educational experience in the classroom or at home with thought provoking challenges.
- Continue your journey while exploring three main attractions at Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex.
- Complete a final mission after your visit to further expand your future space explorer’s new knowledge.