Our Mission

Janet Ivey-Duensing Bio

CEO and Creator of Janet’s Planet

Janet Ivey, creator of Janet’s Planet is committed to enriching the lives of children via education and live performances, TV, and online programming. With over 25 years in the children’s entertainment and education, Janet has captivated Nashville and beyond with her work. She has received 12 Regional Emmys, five Gracie Allen Awards, for her children’s series Janet’s Planet that airs on 140+ public television stations nationwide. Janet is a Buzz Aldrin ShareScience Ambassador and has won a STEM-FLORIDA Award for the “Exploring Microgravity,” educational video about gravity and microgravity, she wrote and produced for Space Florida. This dynamic and fast-paced series is geared to 5-10 year olds and focuses on science, space, history and health. The short form series can be seen on public television stations nationwide as well as KTV (Kids and Teen Television), YouTube, BatteryPop, Club Jelly Telly, AmebaTV, and HighBrow in the UK, and the Children’s Television Network.

Janet is committed to sharing the joy of exploration and discovery with children around the globe.

Janet grew up in Covington, TN, a little town 45 minutes north of Memphis, TN, birthplace of Isaac Hayes and the Charms Blow Pop. She played astronaut on the playground, watched Star Trek and loved going to her friend Carol’s house because she had walkie-talkies that made playing astronaut and Star Trek even more fun. Janet credits her fifth grade teacher, Ms. Ernestine Yarborough for inspiring her love of the solar system. Ms. Yarborough hosted a star party in the fall of 1977 where Janet had the chance to look through a telescope for the first time. Witnessing a strong and beautiful female role model know so much about stars and planets and began a life long love affair with the cosmos.  Part artist, part scientist Janet believes that ART and SCIENCE deserve to be taught side by side in concert with one another. Janet earned her Bachelor’s in Music and Theatre and is a Master’s Candidate in STEAM education at University of San Diego.

On November 5th 2016, Janet was awarded the Inaugural “Permission to Dream” Award from Rick Tumlinson’s New World’s Institute for her commitment to STEAM education and global space and science outreach.

In 2015 was elected to the Board of Governors of the National Space Society and named the spokesperson for Enterprise in Space. Janet believes in the mission of educating young people about the solar system, planetary science and GIRLS, telling them  “that SMART is the most beautiful thing you can be.”

In early 2015, Janet’s Planet was asked by Chief Principal Investigator Alan Stern of the NASA’s New Horizons Mission to do educational outreach for the endeavor.  Janet’s Planet created the #DearPluto project and garnered international attention and amazing letters from around the world.

http://www.buzzfeed.com/kellyoakes/pluto-should-be-a-planet – .mt2YYV80A



Currently Janet is working on a book entitled, #DearPluto that will feature the letters from the children, alongside New Horizons’ scientist’s commentary.

Launching in 2017, Janet will also be ambassador and spokesperson for the Children’s Television Network, CTN, which is designed to play throughout the day in children’s hospitals, bringing positive, inspiring and entertaining programming for children and their caregivers.

Janet presents two live shows in performing art centers, “Tour of the Solar System” and “Exploring Microgravity.” These shows are 21st century theatre that encourage scientific literacy via the use of humor, theatrical antics, visual illusions, enticing graphic elements, and experiential opportunities to join Janet on stage.

On May 26, 2016, Janet Ivey was announced the runner up for the Woman of the Year for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. She worked tirelessly to help raise money for this most worthy charity.

For 15 years she was the co-host of Tennessee’s Wildside, airing on PBS in Tennessee, Kentucky and North Carolina. Janet has numerous commercials, TV and film credits. For the most up to date list, visit her IMDB page: http://www.imdb.com/name/nm3111801/

Janet is a 1989 graduate of Belmont University, Bachelor of Commercial Music and Minor in Theatre and is now a Master’s Candidate for STEAM education at University of San Diego (expected completion December 2018.)

The mission for Janet and Janet’s Planet is to encourage young people to stand in their magnificence and to inspire future generations to use their innate intelligence and creativity to create a better future via STEAM…science, technology, engineering, art and math.

Janet Ivey is a tireless advocate for children and has mentored countless young people all over the world. Janet’s mission has and always will be to enrich the lives of children via art and science, multi-media education and intelligent, informative AWE infused programming that focuses on space exploration and planetary science.

Janet Ivey-Duensing Quick Stats

  • Creator and CEO of Janet’s Planet, Inc.
  • President of Explore Mars
  • Citizen Astronaut Candidate for Space For Humanity
  • NASA JPL Solar System Ambassador
  • Award-winning Science Educator
  • 12 Regional Emmy Awards
  • 5 Gracie Allen Awards
  • STEM-FLORIDA Award for Exploring Microgravity 35 minute documentary for students 3-8
  • Board of Governors for the National Space Society
  • 2 TEDx Talks, AWE Inspired Science & How To Inhabit Your Very Own Planet #PlanetYou
  • Guardian & Shepherdess of the Next Generation of Space Explorers

Our Mission

The mission for Janet and Janet’s Planet is to encourage young people to stand in their magnificence and to inspire future generations to use their innate intelligence and creativity to create a better future via STEAM…science, technology, engineering, art and math.

Janet’s 2014 TEDx Talk “AWE (Art, Wonder, and Experience) Inspired Science can be seen here:

Our Approach


Janet’s Planet seeks to bring to light the wonderful creativity that is an integral part of science.


The mission of Janet’s Planet is to work, engage and build with raw materials; and we are not talking about aluminum, steel or titanium. We are talking about the raw material of minds… young minds, brilliant minds, and future scientific and engineering minds.


Janet Ivey is committed to enriching the lives of children through education and programming. With over 17 years in the media, Ivey has captivated Nashville and beyond with her work and she has received 12 Regional Emmy®s and 5 Gracie Allen awards for her work!


The following principles and research guides the use of multi-media and the formal of all Janet’s Planet programs: Cognitive, Affective and Psychomotor.




Quantitative: Janet promotes curiosity, creativity, and enjoyment in learning. Her multiple approaches in the presentations of ideas/concepts representing multiple intelligences/learning styles, adds to a positive classroom environment. Her interactive, cooperative approach to learning leads to more motivated and engaged student learning.

Qualitative: The methodology, which Janet uses when covering material / objectives in Janet’s Planet shows, is also influenced by research about how to enhance student achievement.

a) Follows National Standards and State Standards so there are specific objective for teachers to measure

b) Janet’s Planet is meant to be used as a supplement to teacher’s instruction, not as a substitute for the teacher doing direct instruction, but it allows the teacher to focus more on formative assessment while Janet does the presentation of material and the teacher checks for understanding. (Based on research on interactive video methods and hypermedia incorporation, pages 228 and 229)

c)Research by Mayer (1989) was concerned with searching for principles of multimedia design that enhanced science outcomes. HE found it was very important for teachers to help students connect verbal explanations to visual ones. Having both allows more appropriate visual and verbal models to be built and retained.

d) Janet models good questioning which research shows leads to improved comprehension, learning and memory of material. Janet’s Planet curriculum can/will include ways for teachers to monitor questioning in order to provide feedback and formative assessment of student learning. We know questioning techniques will personalize feedback to students and have on-going formative assessment enhance achievement.