Despite February’s Lunar Eclipse and the UK historically being a maritime nation, it seems that British kids’ celebrity star knowledge is eclipsing their ability to spot some of the major stars and planets in the night’s sky.
Research out today, to celebrate the launch of the new Power Rangers Operation Overdrive DVD, shows that British children can’t identify the Moon (72%), Mars (57%) and Saturn (44%) but are three times as likely to be able to identify a celebrity star than one from the cosmos. More worryingly, the research also found that two in every five (39%) kids thought Mars was a type of chocolate bar and almost a third (30%) thought Winston Churchill was the first man to walk on the moon.
Two-thirds of the 1,400 kids surveyed were also unable to answer basic questions such as how many planets are in the solar system (60%) or could name the planets in order (59%). A third of kids also believed the Earth wasn’t an official planet (35%) and thought the surface of Mars was blue (33%).
Famous UK astronomical figures such as Stephen Hawking and Sir Patrick Moore should take heart though as nearly three-quarters (73%) of the kids questioned wanted to learn more about astronomy, although only 15% believed that their parents would be able to help them learn about the night sky.
To help boost kids’ knowledge of astronomy, the Power Rangers brand has teamed up with the British Astronomical Society to create a guide to the stars using the popular TV characters to help teach kids more about the night sky from finding the North Star to spotting shooting stars this summer. The guide is available to download from: www.jetix.co.uk/powerrangers15
Gavin Quirk, Brand Manager, Walt Disney Studios Homes Entertainment said: “We’re very proud to be using the brand appeal of Power Rangers to help boost British kids’ knowledge of astronomy. The DVD of the programme’s fifteenth series, Operation Overdrive, launches this month and finds the Rangers searching for jewels from distant galaxies. To help kids search for their own jewels in the night sky, the guide we’ve created gives easy to follow advice so that kids can enjoy inter-galactic adventures of their very own.”
Power Rangers celebrates its 15th anniversary this year, culminating in the launch of five Operation Overdrives DVDs on 10th March, 7th April, 5th May, 26th May and 7th July.
For more information, images or interviews call the Power Rangers website on 0207 684 6969 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Notes to editors:
* Based on statistics from the Department of Children, Schools and Families
** Bandai sales figures 2007
1.The research was undertaken by Jetix in March 2008 and is taken from a Jetix survey of over 1,400 children online on Jetix.co.uk
2. The Power Rangers guide to the night sky can be downloaded from www.jetix.co.uk/powerrangers15
Jetix UK entertains over 2 million kids every month. The channel boasts an unbeatable line-up of toptastic toons, gripping live action and outrageous comedy including Totally Spies, Power Rangers, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Spider-Man, Yin Yang Yo and Captain Flamingo. Jetix UK is part of Jetix Europe, one of the leading pan-European kids entertainment companies. www.jetix.co.uk attracts over 19 million pages impressions a month and 580,000 unique users
About Disney Interactive Studios: Disney Interactive Studios is the interactive entertainment affiliate of The Walt Disney Company (NYSE: DIS). Disney Interactive Studios self publishes and distributes a broad portfolio of multi-platform video games and interactive entertainment worldwide. The company also licenses properties and works directly with other interactive game publishers to bring products for all ages to market. Disney Interactive Studios is based in Glendale, California and has five internal game development studios around the world including Avalanche Software, Fall Line Studio, Propaganda Games, Black Rock Studio and Junction Point Studios.
About Bandai: Bandai UK is a subsidiary of the third largest toy company in the world, Bandai Namco Holdings. Established in 1982, Bandai UK has grown to be the master toy licencee of some of the most popular brands in children’s toys and entertainment, including , Power Rangers, Pokemon, Thunderbirds, Digimon, Gundam , Ben 10 and original products including Badge it! and the worldwide phenomenon (and UK’s best selling toy since 2005): Tamagotchi.
For stockist details please call 01489 790944 or visit www.bandai.co.uk
About Walt Disney Studios Homes Entertainment
Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment UK & Ireland is The Walt Disney Company’s home entertainment arm. We bring an exciting and varied product range to the UK & Irish consumer in the DVD and Blu Ray format. The company's portfolio includes classic Disney titles such as The Jungle Book, Live Action feature films such as Pirates of The Caribbean: At World's End, children's properties such as Power Rangers and TV properties including Lost and Ugly Betty.
About Disney Consumer Products
Disney Consumer Products (DCP) is the business segment of The Walt Disney Company (NYSE: DIS) that extends the Disney brand to merchandise ranging from apparel, toys, home décor and books and magazines to interactive games, food and beverages, stationery, electronics and animation art. This is accomplished through the work of DCP's various lines of business: Disney Toys, Disney Apparel, Disney Food, Health & Beauty, Disney Home, Disney Stationery, Disney Publishing, Disney Interactive Studios, Baby Einstein, and www.disneyshopping.com . The Disney Store, which debuted in 1987, also falls under DCP, through stores currently owned and operated by unaffiliated third parties under licensing agreements in North America and Japan, and wholly-owned stores in Europe.
For more information, please visit www.disneyconsumerproducts.com
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