September 4, 2002
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
-- ANIMALS IN THE CLASSROOM CLASS (K-12)
-- TEAM AMERICA ROCKETRY CHALLENGE IS HERE (7-12)
-- NEW POSTER UNVEILS THE MYTH OF SATURN (4-8)
-- DISTANCE LEARNING WORKSHOP OFFERED
-- BREAK THE CODE AND CHECK THE FUTURE (K-12)
-- TWO WRIGHT WAY POSTERS AVAILABLE (K-12)
-- CALLING ALL YOUNG INVENTORS (2-8)
Animals in the Classroom, a one-day workshop designed to assist K-12 teachers with the selection, care and husbandry of appropriate small animals for teaching science, animal behavior, compassion and responsibility, will be offered Oct. 11 at the Pacific Science Center (PSC).
The workshop features veterinarian John Pitts of the Pet Care Trust. Topics include the selection and care of appropriate small mammals, aquarium fish, birds, reptiles and others: avoiding risk in student-animal interaction and a discussion of human-animal health management including zoonotic disease, allergies and bites; lesson plans for biology, ecology, physics, chemistry, math, behavior, geography and art.
The workshop run 9 a.m. - 4 p.m. with lunch provided. The advance registration fee is $25. Participants will receive a $100 gift certificate for pet care materials and 100-page manual of lesson plans. Course credit is available through City University.
Registration deadline is Oct. 4. For more information, go to
NASA is a proud partner of the first national model rocket competition for U.S. high school and junior high students. Participating students are challenged to design, build and fly a multi-stage model rocket that can take two raw eggs and an electronic altimeter to exactly 1500 feet and return with the eggs intact. The top five winning student teams will share a total prize pool of $59,000.
The final face-to-face fly-off takes place May 10, 2003, in Virginia near Washington, DC. Teams may be made up of three or more students enrolled in the same accredited public or private high school, under the supervision of a teacher sponsor from that school. Junior high school students and home school students may participate through a local accredited public or private high school, again under the supervision of a teacher from that high school, and at the discretion of the high school principal.
The registration deadline is November 15. For contest information and an application, visit
http://www.rocketcontest.orgNEW POSTER UNVEILS THE MYTH OF SATURN (4-8)
The educational poster "Unveiling the Myth of Saturn" is now available on NASA Spacelink. The poster cover is a depiction of the myth of Saturn combined with images of space-age exploration.
Additional resources include information about the Cassini mission to Saturn, names and stories about the mythological god Saturn, and a classroom activity for students in grades 4-8. "Unveiling the Myth of Saturn" is located at:
A workshop on NASA Distance Learning Expeditions at the Museum of Flight will be held on Saturday, Nov. 16, from 11 a.m.- 1 p.m. The workshop is designed to introduce teachers to the NASA model for distance learning in three subject areas: microgravity, space farming and robotics.
Participants will be able to view videotaped presentations of distance learning programs and practice skills necessary for leading a class through a live program. This includes participating in activities related to the science discovery kits. The kits are part of the pre-visit and post-visit packets that teachers receive when they purchase a distance learning program. Museum staff will also give a demonstration of the operation of the equipment in order to help participants understand how the program will be conducted in their classroom.
To reserve a spot, please contact: Denny Smith at 206-764-1384. The deadline to register is 24 hours prior to the desired workshop date. For more details, contact Anthony Culanag, the distance learning coordinator, at
This week NASAexplores focuses on pulse detonation and bar codes. "Pulse On The Future" looks at a futuristic method of propulsion that uses pulses of power, rather than bursts, to propel a vehicle into orbit. In "Breaking The Code," students explore code systems that are used to keep track of data and hardware in our daily lives and in the U.S. space program.
Both programs include lesson plans broken down to K-4, 5-8 and 9-12. Each week through out the school year, NASAexplores provides new articles with lesson plans. Visit NASAexplores at
Updated versions of the Educational posters "The Wright Way: The Process of Invention" and "The Wright Way: Innovation Through Engineering" are available on NASA Spacelink.
The posters, which are designed to honor the accomplishments of Orville and Wilbur Wright, now include information about The Wright Quest, a NASA Student Involvement Program (NSIP) competition for students in grades K-12. The posters are available at the following Internet locations:
The Wright Way: The Process of Invention
The Wright Way: Innovation Through Engineering
The Craftsman/NSTA Young Inventors Awards Program challenges students to use creativity and imagination along with science, technology, and mechanical ability to invent or modify a tool.
Students must work independently to conceive and design their tool inventions. The student, with guidance from a teacher-advisor, parent, or significant adult, will design and build a tool. The tool must perform a practical function, including (but not limited to) tools that mend, make life easier or safer in some way, entertain, or solve an everyday problem.
Entries must be received by March 4, 2003. All entrants receive a personalized certificate and a small gift. Two national winners (one from grades 2-5 and one from grades 6-8) will each receive a $10,000 United States Series EE Savings Bond. The 10 national finalists (five from each grade category) will each receive a $5,000 bond. Second and third place winners receive smaller bonds. The winning teachers and schools will receive prizes from Sears, Roebuck and Co. retail stores.
For more information, go to
Ideas, comments and Web sites of interest to other teachers should be sent to Irene Svete, newsletter editor, at
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