On April 9, 2018, the space session Asteroid No. 1956 began at Artek. For the first time, the children’s center reached its peak attendance of 3,000 children per session two months ahead of schedule.
The session was named after the discovery made by Crimean scientist Lyudmila Chyornykh, who found Asteroid No. 1956 in space in 1969 and gave it the name Artek. The space session is held together with Roscosmos and Korolev Samara National Research University. The 3D Education Association and the Museum of Cosmonautics are Artek’s theme partners. The official opening ceremony took place on April 12, Cosmonautics Day. Artek held big events such as the Look Up campaign and a direct connection with the Russian cosmonauts aboard the International Space Station with Roscosmos’ support.
During this session, Artek invites children to take part in an entertaining adventure. On the very first day, all children received Antoine de Saint-Exupéry’s The Little Prince, which would become their guide. Artek researchers will unveil a lot of interesting secrets at special laboratories and set off for other planets together with the protagonist. Like the Little Prince, they will do good deeds, make new discoveries and have interesting encounters.
The participants will present We Explore Space sci-fi projects and learn about Russian scientists’ most important achievements. They will take part in a space dinner, the Galactic Cloud event, and the For You, Earth festival of environmental activist teams. Children will embark on a journey around Crimea and take part in workshops with scientists, cosmonauts and other creative people.
The TED (Technology Entertainment Design) art conference Roses and Baobabs, when children met with representatives of various professions, learned how adults grow their roses and found out what baobabs they fight, was one of the first educational events of the session.
The children enjoyed a visit by employees of the children’s center: teachers, counselors, managers, extracurricular education teachers, psychologists, and representatives of creative jobs. They talked about their job choice and about how to make a difficult decision and be not what you are told to be but what you want to be. They also explained that even the shiest person can master public speaking, that people can leave successful careers to work with children and be truly happy, and that resolving school conflicts depends on each of them.
Every speaker shared his or her personal story, which helped the new children feel the atmosphere at Artek. Together with the adults, the children drew the conclusion that their own worlds are their planet. It does not matter how many undiscovered planets lie ahead, because everyone wants to return home after the journey, to the place where your Rose awaits you, like in The Little Prince.
“Today I felt like the Little Prince, who only begins to discover the world around him. Like the Fox gave the Little Prince, we got good advice that helps us believe in ourselves,” said Maryam Amiroslanova from Derbent, Dagestan. “I would like to follow the advice about loving your work and doing everything with pleasure.”
“I would like to try my hand in acting, and it is important for me to learn the secrets of public speaking,” Nastya Mikhailenko from Komsomolsk-on-Amur said. “I found out how to attract an audience and hold their attention, about how important your facial expressions, gestures and your energy are. I want to learn as many new things as possible at Artek, and this learning started on our first day here. It was important for me to hear about choosing your path in life. And I think the adults’ advice on choosing a path that would not hurt anyone is very wise.”
“Speaking with the adults who work at Artek encourages us to achieve something and helps us look into our hearts and understand what is most important in life,” says Ira Sereda from Simferopol. “I will definitely listen to the Artek director’s advice about not obsessing over your failures. You must move forward and try new things. Only then can you learn something. All of us were given the book The Little Prince on our first day there. I have already read it: it does not only help to discover the world but understand adults. Discoveries and good deeds will be the focus of this session, and I like it. I want to find out what I can do here at Artek. And my expectations have started to come true from the first day.”