April 17, 2001
WSGC Newsletter for Educators
The Washington NASA Space Grant Consortium's electronic newsletter for teachers provides curriculum ideas, Internet links and other resources to help you better meet the Washington EALRs and the National Science Education Standards.TABLE OF CONTENTS
-- VISIT THE UW ASTRONOMY OPEN HOUSE
-- KNOW A GREAT TEACHER? (6-12)
-- TEST THE NEW WORLDWATCHER CURRICULUM (9-12)
-- LEWIS AND CLARK SUMMER INSTITUTES
-- NEW ONLINE CURRICULUM MAGAZINE (K-12)
-- RESOURCES FOR EARTH SCIENCE AND GEOGRAPHY INSTRUCTION
-- NASA TRACKS HAZARDOUS SMOKE AND SMOG
The UW Department of Astronomy will hold an open house from 2-6 p.m. May 12. The theme of this year's open house is "Three Centuries of UW Observatories."
The event takes place in the Physics-Astronomy Building (the corner of 15th Ave. N.E. and Pacific Ave. N.E. in Seattle). Activities will include lectures, drop-in slide shows, demonstrations, and hands-on astronomy for kids and adults. For a schedule of events, go to
Pacific Science Center and Ackerley Corporate Giving would like to recognize the work being done by Washington math and science teachers through their Outstanding Teacher Awards. The three award categories are high school math, high school science and middle school science.
If you know an exemplary science or math teacher you wish to recognize, please have the person you nominate complete an application. Interested teachers are encouraged to identify individuals to nominate them. Each award recipient receives a plaque and $2,000, to be presented in the fall of 2001.Applications must be postmarked no later than May 21. For applications, contact Josie Wellington at
Northwestern University's WorldWatcher Project is recruiting teachers to field test "Looking at the Environment." The high school environmental science curriculum focuses on technology and scientific visualization. Teachers will work receive materials, technology and professional development opportunities. A stipend, travel expenses and an opportunity to earn graduate credit from Northwestern University will be provided.
Applications will be accepted until May 15. For more information on the field test, including application materials, please visit
The University of Montana's Lewis and Clark Education Center is offering two weeklong summer institutes to introduce teachers to technologies such GIS, GPS, and data visualization for their study of Lewis and Clark Trail environments.
Classroom activities focus on preparation for field-studies and include lectures, hands-on exercises, and focused discussion related to particular content areas. The first summer session runs June 24-29; the second, August 5-10. Registration for each institute is open to 25 teachers. Participants are chosen on a competitive basis. Applications must be postmarked by April 30. Notification will follow by May 15.
For more information, see the Resources link at
The staff of EDC's K-12 Science Curriculum Dissemination Center announces its first installment of the Science Teachers in Conversation online magazine.
In the premiere issue, four high school teachers explored the decision to choose an inquiry-based science curriculum and exchange their views on topics such as the kind of professional development that teachers need to move toward inquiry science teaching, inquiry as an approach for every student and parents' concerns and misconceptions. A round-table discussion is also available.
Visit the magazine at http://www.edc.org/cse/k12center.htmlRESOURCES FOR EARTH SCIENCE AND GEOGRAPHY INSTRUCTION
This Central Michigan University site doesn't look flashy, but it is thorough and offers dozens of links to images and other raw materials that could be useful in classroom projects. Links are organized around the sequence of topics typically taught in a college-level, introductory Earth science or physical geography class. Links are also available for environmental science, earth science/geography education, career opportunities, and more.
The sites selected are based on "image quality, ease with which lesson plans can be developed, organization, authenticity, scope, and format." The Resources for Earth Science and Geography Instruction page is available at
New research sponsored by NASA may soon help scientists do a better job of tracking pollution plumes around the world and help provide people more advance warning of unhealthy air.
Researchers have discovered that smoke and smog move in different ways through the atmosphere. A series of unusual events several years ago created a blanket of pollution over the Indian Ocean. In the second half of 1997, smoke from Indonesian fires remained stagnant over Southeast Asia while smog -- which is tropospheric, low-level ozone -- spread more rapidly across the Indian Ocean toward India.
This situation was exacerbated by El Nino, which had already increased the thickness of smog over the region. At the same time, additional smog from African fires streamed over the Indian Ocean and combined with the smog from Indonesia, creating an aerial canopy of pollutants. For the full story see
Ideas, comments and Web sites of interest to other teachers should be sent to Irene Svete, newsletter editor, at
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