TULSA, Oklahoma - Flight Night Space Week kicks off Monday in Tulsa with a very special appearance by an astronaut who has gone to the space station twice. Colonel Paul Lockhart spoke to students at Monte Cassino.

Lockhart tells News On 6 said he received encouragement in science, engineering and math when he was young, and he'd like to pass the same information on to today's students.

"This is my opportunity to give back and show young children how important it is to stay engaged in science, technology, engineering and math - and how it's important to their future," he said.

The Monte Cassino event was sponsored by Siegfried STEM and the Space Foundation - as part of Flight Night Space Week. The retired astronaut spoke to second through sixth graders.

"It's probably rated in my mind, one of the better things that I do," he said, "because it brings me in connection with young kids all the way from kindergarten to high school."

There will be events at several local school campuses throughout the week, according to Tulsa Regional STEM Alliance.

Lockhart will also speak in a free community event from 6 to  8 p.m. on Wednesday at the Tulsa Air and Space Museum & Planetarium. That's at 3624 North 74th East Avenue. There will be activities for kids including a hologram creation, F-16 wind tunnel, robots and all the exhibits TASM has to offer.

The spots quickly filled up for the free community event, but they have started a waiting list.