Image of learn to speak robot


So many children and young people came up with fantastically creative and cool designs that it was difficult for the Commissioner to select her favourites for the public Space to Dream exhibition.

The Commissioner would like to thank and congratulate every school that took part in her Challenge and sent in a completion form.


Children and young people were challenged to design a toy or gadget for someone their age who is ‘moving to Mars’ using a design-thinking process.

Here are the Commissioner’s top-rated designs that have been 3D printed / printed onto mounted picture boards and feature in the Commissioner’s travelling public exhibition.


Currently feature in the Commissioner’s travelling public exhibition

CONGRATULATIONS NAILSWORTH PRIMARY SCHOOL! You have won a 3D printer donated by Challenge partners Makers Empire with these joint top-entries ‘The Walker’ and ‘Humectrobot’!


A fold up treadmill that has an attached VR headset to simulate walking in a park with a dog. You can use the VR make to simulate Earth walking in a park with your dog.

By Indiya, Year 6, Nailsworth Primary School


Humectrobot strives to prevent term “loneliness” in outerspace as it is controlled by a human on Earth updating information. The android is powered by a nano-diamond battery which is self charging. It has cameras which capture every single moment and detects danger (storms) speakers which hear and transmit messages to humans on Earth. It has a screen enabling activities (eg reading, watching etc) to be performed or also video chatting with humans. Its feet are connected to the land without floating.

By Vedanti, Year 7, Nailsworth Primary School


My toy is a camera with self-printing photos, a tripod and a photo album. It has three modes, which are night vision, normal mode and portrait mode. It has handles so if you let go of the toy you can grab it quickly and easily. The photo album is on the front to store all your memories of home and your experience.

By Ruby, Year 4, Karoonda Area School


Not only does my “robot dog” keep you company in lonely isolation, it has special sensors built into the HVD to detect when sandstorms will come, tell you what the temperature is and can help you with tasks on Mars. It can smell toxic chemicals or animals, has a tracking device to never lose the dog, is made of light weight metal to reduce the cost but still be durable. It has jets in the bottom of its feet to fly like a drone, cameras and sensors, a wifi tail to make sure you never get lost and super hearing.

By Miles, Year 5, Sturt Street Community School


It is a gadget toy where you can flick his helmet up and down and side to side. You can use it as a flashlight with its eyes-it will be dark on Mars. It can remind you of earth because it is green and it is a Charmander which is popular with kids my age.

By Diesel, Year 6, St Michael’s College


It shows a hologram of your choice. It has a remote to select many options.

By Sasha, Year 5, Seymour College Junior School


This robot helps you live, survive, grow your own food and it also protects you. It is your friend and family and mode of transportation.

By Aiden, Year 5, Unley Primary School


We found out that there was usable water ice under the carbon dioxide ice caps on Mars. We designed a drink bottle for kids that could melt this ice, filter it and then cool it again ready for drinking all in the one bottle. We thought about the theme of the bottle when we came up with the designs for the outside.

By Olivia and Catherine, Year 6, Eastern Fleurieu School, Strathalbyn


When you press the red button a hologram comes out and it’s a map. You can put it around your arm like a watch.

By Tyson, Year 4, St Patrick’s School Mansfield Park


It is a kitchen that has food in it and if you eat that food it gives you powers for 30 minutes. The first thing is gold chicken which gives any powers you want, then there is hyper fries which give you hyper speed, the levitation sauce helps you fly all of these items are also very nourishing to make sure you are fed well. Lastly in the cupboards there is cutlery and if you use the cutlery it increases your powers by 10x. It also has all functions of a kitchen, a microwave to heat up your food which also gives you 2x more power.

By Patrick, Year 3, Prospect Primary School


He is an AI bear toy with its own tablet that in an emergency can feed you. It can be a heater in emergencies, fly and take streaming video.
In its mouth is an air hose and air rockets will let it fly in the lower gravity of Mars. Not needing air, it can travel through unprotected space to seek food or help and bring it back to the owner.

By Liv, Year 5, Lobethal Primary School


The machine I created is a rover that goes on Mars and mines minerals. Even though it’s called the Mars Miner, it can still go on the moon or any other moon or planet as well. The thing special about my rover is that it can fly and it can hold a lot of fuel. The Mars Miner mainly flies around instead of using its wheels so it does not get stuck in uneven surfaces. My rover has a hand to grab the materials the drill mines. The drill and hand have metal rods or poles that can bend in so it saves space. Next to the drill there is a laser which doesn’t do any damage and scans around the rover for materials to mine. The laser is also for looking around so it doesn’t fall in a hole. On the back my rover has an oxygen tank, a communication device, a health kit and a wheel to balance the rover when it is using its wheels. The oxygen tank and medical kit has braille on it. I think my rover will be handy because it’s not too big that it has to go up in a giant rocket ship on its own and it’s not too small that it can’t hold anything. The rover can fit in a rocket ship but it may need a small compartment for it to go in and out. The Mars Miner will be helpful for people because it will help give information to NASA or other space agencies about Mars to see if humans can live on Mars or if there ever was life there.

By Jackson, Year 6, Woodcroft College


Ride the bike and fly around using the booster.

By Brock, Year 6, Murray Bridge North Primary School R-7


A recording ring camera with a tough grip. If you bend about thumb it sends a shock to the camera and takes a photo. To record you press a button on the ring.

By Lily, Year 2, Nairne Primary School


It is a robot bunny to remind you of your pet. You can face time your family and play games with it. You can also watch shows. Its eyes are cameras!

By Holly, Year 4, Glen Osmond Primary School


The “fix bot” enables you to program it to make screws with the iron fillings to fix stuff. It poops out screws. It also has a remote so it comes to you.

By Jimmy, Year 4, Hawker Area School


The gloves have many different tools excluding the gloves themselves and are all labelled on the design. Each tool is made up of electrical determiners. Since the tool is fictional, none are impossible to make.

By Emma, Year 6, Colonel Light Gardens Primary School


The dispenser shoots supplies. It shoots memories because family members cannot come. It shoots warm clothes (It’s cold), a suit so you can get out of the rocket, games, water, clock and camera.

By Yashica, Year 5, Colonel Light Gardens Primary School


This is a stylish, yet practical smart charm bracelet! You can search for things, find your way around, contact people, play games and eat anything you wish.

By Eliana, Year 6, Walford Anglican Girls School


The friendo portor can be just a friend and talks like an average person, it mimics the original user. It uses the same intonation as the user it’s also cute and playful.

By Kara, Year 7, Surrey Downs R-7 School


It grows food inside the stomach part. There is a heat light to represent the sun to control heat and light. It can heat up to have condensation to have water to help it grow. You can see when it is ready to harvest.

By Eva, Year 3, Marryatville Primary School


While their parents are busy flying spacecraft around their new home, Mars, children get to wear a fluorescent spacesuit so they can always be seen. The Superfun Space suit is a fun gadget to take to and wear on Mars. It is for all ages and comes packed with fun and games attached. Its purpose is to entertain and teach young children about their new home, Mars. It has a speedometer and current temperature reader to help children with their metric measures. It develops your efficiency when moving and flying in a space suit for when you are working as adult. While the spacesuit is giving you readings of the current weather situation to keep you safe from the unpredictable weather, you can play with the ball attached to your suit by a cord to stop it from moving away due to the atmosphere.

By Hayley, Year 6, All Saints Catholic Primary School


You wear it like any other jacket, but you can keep all your devices, books, pencils and anything inside where it’s safe and warm.

By Kim, Year 7, Ingle Farm East Primary School


Persistence is a new Mars Rover. I don’t think any other Rovers have infa-red to find living things so in the pitch black it can still see objects.

I designed this to help space stations to find new life or new types of materials. It runs on nitrogen because on Mars the sunlight is less intense. I have solar panels to catch what sunlight I can. My design came about because I was after something that could be helpful and I would love to be able to control my own Rover on Mars.

By Eli, Year 5, Eastern Fleurieu School, Strathalbyn R-6 Campus


It polishes space rocks. First you put the rock in the polish area. Then you take it out and grab a towel. Finally take the scrubber and scrub the rock. Last of all you put the rock in the rock area.

By Amna, Year 2, Athelstone School


Currently on exhibition at MOD


It can make infinity flowers for you on Mars. The machine helps make plants for kids to feel good and also give them brain food!

By harrybu


This picture frame is holographic.

By Jessica


The solar panels power the springs and the foot heater. In default mode the springs are part of the sole of the boot. When the springs spring, then they come out of the sole and launch you up. The foot heater was just something to add and the cables are hidden inside the side of the boots. The solar panels in my design are on top of the boots but you could put them all over the boot if you wanted.

By Matteo


Can change the fertility and water amount put in. It can grow any plant. Can fly right next to you. Comes with a lead.

By ThoHill


Because it is a necessary part of living in space

By Encin


Adapts to the time on a different world by the magnetic pull on that planet

By Marcus


My design is a jetpack. It holds items inside that remind people of home and a gadget that creates things you think of.

By Emily pro 2020


A toilet that uses urine and converts it to clean drinking water using two tablets. It has an off and on button and an electric mixer.

By hensim


Heavy Shoes so when you jump on Mars you come down fast. Belt with a pouch. Thick leggings for comfort and warmth.

By Ya boi huglass


This is a cup of hot chocolate that NEVER runs out! Going on a space mission can be quite exhausting so I made this!

By Alannahm


It’s so my friend can still remember all the memories we made and hopefully make new ones on Mars.

By Artwolf

Image of learn to speak robot




February and March 2021:

Adelaide City Library - City of Adelaide 



January 2021:

Hutt Street Library - City of Adelaide 

November 2020:

MOD’s Museum of Discovery


Pamela Melroy

Pamela Melroy

Director, Space Technology and Policy, Nova Systems I Former NASA Astronaut and Space Mission Commander

Design thinking is extremely empowering when you realise that once you’ve learned a process for thinking things through, there’s no problem you can’t solve.

Mark Sparvell

Mark Sparvell

Education Leader at Microsoft Worldwide

Design thinking guides learners to create compelling solutions for real or meaningful problems. I love the way Space to Dream seamlessly folds both empathy and experimentation into the learning. To solve a problem we simply must understand its impact and the potential impact of the solution. Learning is a profoundly social engagement and at its deepest level, brings purpose and passion together. We all need ‘space to dream’, to imagine possibilities, iterate, co-create and think-out-loud together. Technology can be levered to extend and amplify design thinking.

Mandi Dimitriadis

Mandi Dimitriadis

Director of Learning at Makers Empire

Design Thinking is one of the best tools we can equip young people with to make sure they are ready to solve problems and address challenges in their futures. Design thinking is a human-centered process which gives us the creative confidence to imagine a better world and to seize opportunities to use our skills to help others. I can’t wait to see the innovations and creative inventions young people come up with when given the ‘space to dream’.

Dr David Haley

Dr David Haley

Co-founder and CTO at Myriota

Space to Dream helps young people learn how to use design thinking to solve out of this world problems⁠. It’s a great way for young people to start thinking about the opportunities and challenges space brings—which is important, as we depend on space technologies every day. Here in South Australia, we are at the epicentre of the rapidly expanding Australian space industry. By the time a Reception-aged child leaves school, jobs in the space industry are expected to have tripled!

Flavia Nardini

Flavia Nardini

Co-Founder and CEO at Fleet Space Technologies

Design thinking is the process of where all great ideas have a beginning.  It enables everyone of all ages to have a starting point and to grow the idea into a product – the idea becomes tangible and solid so that we can use it making our lives easier.  The ‘Space to Dream’ initiative is super interesting as it gives children a platform to experiment and turn their dreams into realities.

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