For Kids: Moon Missions Facts!

Learn about the moon missions, including how many times men have been to the moon and what they did there!

Look at the moon. You can see it many nights and sometimes during the day. Do you know people have been to the moon? Do you know people have walked on the moon?

People have been to the moon during "moon missions." The people who have gone to the moon are called "astronauts." They rode in rockets, also called "spacecraft."

American astronauts have been to the moon six times! The first trip to the moon was in 1969. The last trip was in 1972. These missions to the moon were called "Apollo" missions. The moon is about 238,900 miles away from the earth, so it took three days to get there!



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Before the first Apollo mission, no one knew if it would be safe to land on the moon, but in 1969, when our first astronauts landed there, we found it was safe. The first men to land on the moon were Neil Armstrong, Edwin "Buzz" Aldrin and Michael Collins. They went to the moon on a rocket named "Saturn 5." Neil and Buzz actually walked on the moon, while Michael stayed in the spacecraft.

The spacecraft the astronauts flew had a "command module," and a "lunar module." The command module stayed in orbit around the moon, while the lunar module landed on the moon. The lunar module was called the Eagle.

When Neil Armstrong first stepped onto the surface of the moon, he said "One small step for man, one giant leap for mankind!"

Because of these three brave men, and the others who later went to the moon, we have learned many things.

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We now know the moon has no living things. It has no air and water, so plants, animals and people cannot live there.

A day on the moon is about 28 earth days long. A moon day has 14 earth days of very hot sunlight, and 14 earth days of freezing dark nights. We also know the gravity on the moon is not very strong, so the astronauts could jump high. They collected "moon rocks" and "moon dust" to bring back to earth. Because there is no air, they had to wear spacesuits, and carry oxygen. Oxygen is the part of the air people need to breathe to live.

On the moon there is no wind. There is no rain. The footprints our astronauts made in the moon "dirt" will be there forever. When they put up an American Flag, they pushed the pole for the flag into the moon and used a piece of metal to hold the flag out, because there is no wind to make it fly!

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The Moon Missions!

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