Lakeridge Elementary School first-grade student Sydney Cui, 6, recently had her artwork selected for NASA’s Commercial Crew 2019 Children’s Artwork Calendar Contest.
The NASA Commercial Crew Program works with American companies to build rockets and spacecraft that will launch astronauts into space. The spaceships will launch from Florida and take astronauts about 250 miles above the surface of Earth to perform experiments to prepare other astronauts for longer and further missions, like the International Space Station.
The calendar contest is designed to get youth excited about STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) and STEM fields. The Commercial Crew Program 2019 Children’s Artwork Calendar features original artwork submitted by children from throughout the world. The selected artworks represent a different space-related theme for each month.
Cui’s piece, “Returning to Earth” is the main art for the month of December. Her second piece, “Amazed Flamingos,” is the border art for the month of June.
Cui said she first heard about the contest through her art teacher, who encouraged her to submit a piece. Cui has been taking art lessons since she was about 3 years old.
“Her first art lesson was when she was two years and 11 months old,” Cui’s mother, Nicole, said. “Her older sister is an artist and we wanted to see if this was something she would take to, and she did.”
It took Cui about seven weeks to complete her art pieces, specifically “Returning to Earth.”
“It was hard deciding all the colors,” Cui said. “Drawing the people and the parachute was hard too.”
Cui said she was surprised to learn her art pieces were selected to be featured in the calendar.
“I was so surprised, but I felt really confident about myself,” she said. “I was so happy.”
Cui encourages other students to draw because “It can make you really happy.”
To see the full calendar or to learn more about the Commercial Crew Program, go online to the Commercial Crew Program website.