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Kids Can Prep for Total Solar Eclipse with 'Space Racers' Website

The coast-to-coast total solar eclipse on Aug. 21 will be memorable for children and adults alike. So the preschool show "Space Racers" launched a new website called to get kids interested in the big event.

The website offers advice for kids (ages 2-11) on how to watch the eclipse safely, an educational video with the Space Racers characters, a hands-on eclipse activity and an "eclipse viewing kit" that's available for purchase. The aim is to help kids understand the science behind the total eclipse.

"Space Racers" is an original half-hour animated show for preschoolers that follows a group of anthropomorphic space planes as they make their way through the Stardust Space Academy. Their training takes them on adventures throughout Earth's solar system. [Don't Let an Old Myth Prevent Your Child from Seeing the Solar Eclipse]

The show has featured plotlines that introduce youngsters to a curriculum focused on STEM (science, technology, engineering and math).

The "Space Racers" team has brought on multiple partners and two eclipse "ambassadors" for the initiative. Those partners include the U.S. Space & Rocket Center, the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry, Readiness Learning Associates, the SPARK Academy for STEM Education, and Arlington Public Schools of Virginia.

Emily Calandrelli, an Emmy-nominated science TV host and Twitter personality @thespacegal, will be one of the ambassadors. She will also publish a new children's STEM book series called "Ada Lace" (Simon & Schuster, Aug. 29, 2017)

Another ambassador will be David Baron, author of "American Eclipse" (Liveright, 2017), which talks about the 1878 solar eclipse and how it helped the United States rise as a world power. Baron is a former science correspondent for NPR and a former science editor for PRI's "The World," and he has watched five total solar eclipses.

"Through our dedicated partners and ambassadors, 'Space Racers' aims to be the authority for teaching our youngest learners all about the eclipse and to introduce them to one of science's most important tools — observation," said Matthias Schmitt, chief marketing officer of "Space Racers," in a statement. 

"'Space Racers' does a tremendous job of reaching kids with stories of planetary science," said Joseph Vick, manager of museum education at the U.S. Space & Rocket Center (one of the partner institutions), in the statement. "I can't imagine a better resource for teachers, parents or camps trying to better understand how to explain these wonders to kids."

You can view the website at and get more information on Twitter (@AugustEclipse) or on Facebook (

Editor's note: has teamed up with Simulation Curriculum to offer this awesome Eclipse Safari app to help you enjoy your eclipse experience. The free app is available for Apple and Android, and you can view it on the web

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Elizabeth Howell

Elizabeth Howell is a contributing writer for who is one of the few Canadian journalists to report regularly on space exploration. She is the author or co-author of several books on space exploration. Elizabeth holds a Ph.D. from the University of North Dakota in Space Studies, and an M.Sc. from the same department. She also holds a bachelor of journalism degree from Carleton University in Canada, where she began her space-writing career in 2004. Besides writing, Elizabeth teaches communications at the university and community college level, and for government training schools. To see her latest projects, follow Elizabeth on Twitter at @howellspace.