Luna Duckie, Astronaut

Troubles with math couldn’t keep her from space

“Good try, Luna,” the teacher said. “I know you’re doing your best!”

Seven-year-old Luna Duck stared at the paper with a frown. Math was so confusing, and she felt so disappointed each time she studied hard and still failed. She looked up at the moon each night, dreaming of being an astronaut. But everyone knew astronauts had to be amazing at math.

I will never get to the moon, Luna thought in defeat.

Then Luna started tutoring with Pythagoras Duck, a math whiz.

“You know,” Pythagoras Duck said, “Your brain is very unique. Learning math can be rewarding, even though it’s difficult!”

Pythagoras had an extensive garden, so they used what was in front of them to study. They began by counting plants and dividing garden plots, then calculating dirt volume, but progressed to determining the necessary moisture content of soil, adequate sun hours in various temperatures, measuring wind trajectories, and more.

Between lessons, Luna Duck and her dad worked hard each night on helping her unique math brain for years, following her tutor’s guidance and plan. They quizzed, they practiced. They flashcarded, calculated, scribbled, and scratched.

Little by little, Luna’s grades started looking better. When she was finally ready to attend St. Feather University, she knew what she wanted to study: plants! Pythagoras Duck had advanced her math skills but given her a deep understanding and love of botany, the study of plants and plant growth.

Hard working and world-renowned botanist Dr. Luna Duck had all but forgotten her dream of space travel until many years later when DASA (Duck Aeronautics and Space Administration) put out a call for help. Their missions to the moon have been so successful that they were preparing the first duck-staffed mission to Mars. The only problem was, DASA’s astronauts were great at math, but none of them had a green thumb. Up in space and on Mars, they were going to use plants to help clean the carbon dioxide out of the air so the astronauts could breathe oxygen. They needed an experienced botanist to join their crew!

After some exciting training, Luna Duck was strapped into a rocket with five of the best mathematicians she’d ever met. The duck astronaut team was ready for their mission to Mars — starring Luna as a key member of the crew!

As the countdown begin, T-minus 10, Luna looked out the window and smiled, knowing that her favorite plant-loving math tutor Pythagoras Duck, and her family and friends were all cheering her on this mission. It was one small step for a duck, but one giant leap for duck-kind!