OWTK Games + Apps

Go To Space With The JFK Challenge

JFK Challenge App Title Screen

The Mousetronaut went to the moon last night, just before bed but with her teeth brushed and books read. She waved away the weighty, standard-issue space garb for her favorite owl pajamas, because, well, maybe she thinks there are owls in space. Or not, maybe those were just the separates on top of the pj pile in her bottom drawer, the one reserved for sleepwear.

Earlier in the day, before pajamas replaced uniforms, while the girls were still at school and I was finishing up sleeping off the effects of the Dad 2.0 Summit in San Francisco, I finally remembered to hit up the iTunes App Store and grab the new free JFK Challenge iPad app, from the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation. It’s a nifty two pronged app with mid-century-stylized art and illustration, offering kids (and adults who are many decades removed from their scholastic endeavors) the chance to learn about two of the major initiatives of the JFK presidency: the Peace Corps and the Space Program. Forget politics for a moment here, okay Captain Internet Anger, and recognize that these are good things with long lasting positive impacts for America and the world at large. We and our kids can take many a lesson from both. Were talking about service, giving back, striving for greatness, and the limitless potential of humanity.

With that in mind, the JFK Challenge:

Mousetronaut_JFK Challenge App

A most adorable Mousetronaut

Blending original footage and audio from the 1960’s, the JFK Challenge app proves a most enjoyable, interactive time capsule for 21st-century families. With sleek minimalist design, the opportunity to try and re-try without penalty, and a bounty of thoughtful educational elements, the Space Race side of the app will put your kiddos through the paces as they train for their fiery launch to, and safe landing on, the moon. (We’re set to give the Peace Corp portion of the JFK Challenge a spin later on tonight).

JFK Challenge App_Rocket Launch

While the Mouse lead our family’s first moon mission, my entire gang snuggled up in bed to take turns at guiding Apollo 11 safely through space and manning the controls for a cushioned descent to the crater-ed surface of Earth’s big ball of cheese in the sky.

Last night’s experience was an anomaly, as we rarely play apps together as a foursome, but the JFK Challenge magnetized us for an hour of family fun around a single shared iPad. And the Bear, who is studying the space program right now in her 5th grade classroom, came away with new and reinforced knowledge with which she’ll surely dazzle her teachers in the days and weeks to come.

JFK Challenge App Moon Landing Screenshot

The knowledge, science facts and historical elements of the app are all well-placed and give balance to the sheer entertainment of your lofty space race pursuits. In short, you’ll learn together as a family without ever feeling like you are being taught — the best kind of learning, I’ve found.

Best of all, this gorgeously designed app for iPad is 100% free with no in-app purchase nonsense — just good clean fun for free that’ll inspire the next generation of thinkers, doers and dreamers — whether in a school uniform or a set of owl pajamas — just as JFK himself would have wanted.

Download the JFK Challenge iPad app now for free.

JFK Challenge App

And while you are playing the JFK Challenge over the next couple of weeks, follow along with the The JFK Challenge Family Scavenger Hunt on Facebook for a chance to win an iPad Mini.

*I was compensated for this story, but would’ve space-raced to tell you about the app anyway. It’s that rad.

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