April 28, 2006
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
-- CELEBRATE SPACE DAY MAY 4 (K-12)
-- ASTROBIOLOGY FOR YOUR CLASSROOM (6-12)
-- PODCASTING FOR PLANETS & MORE
-- INTELLIGENT DESIGN & EDUCATION LECTURE
-- FALLING TO PIECES
If you don't have your Space Day plans already, you're in luck. NASA, AOL, and the Space Day organization are offering students a front-row seat for the festivities through a special one-hour webcast that captures the celebration at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center.
Emceed by AOL's Radio KOL DJ Rick Adams, the event will provide insights from astronauts and other spaceflight experts at the center, plus video link to the Expedition 13 crew on the International Space Station. Teacher resources including hands-on activities are available at the site. For more information, go to
Is there life elsewhere in the universe? Are the ingredients for life being spread in comets? How do scientists find planets around other stars?
On May 20, discover hands-on ways to answer these questions at Astrobiology Activities for Your Classroom. The four-hour workshop, sponsored by Washington NASA Space Grant Consortium and Space Science Network Northwest, will take place from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. at Lakewood High School in Arlington.
The workshop utilizes activities from NSF field-tested materials such as Voyages Through Time by SETI and Astrobiology: An Integrated Science Approach by TERC. The workshop is free, but pre-registration is required. Clock hours are available for $15 (cash or check). For more information, visit
NASA's PlanetQuest podcast series offers ongoing news, features and interviews about the search for new planets and life around other stars. The podcasts cover topics such as building a better guide to the galaxy and the search for another earth. For more information, go to
In its April edition, Geotimes posted links to several science-related podcasts including The Naked Scientists, a group of University of Cambridge physicians and scientists who "strip down" science topics for the general audience, and Slacker Astronomy, which started as a fun project for a group of professional astronomers and journalists that now boats 12,000 weekly readers. You can view "Podcast Powwow" at
Intelligent design has been much in the news, especially in regards to a decisive decision in the Federal District Court case, Kitzmiller vs. Dover. Why is intelligent design rejected by the courts -- and more importantly -- by scientists?
On May 8, Eugenie Scott, executive director of the National Center for Science Education, will be in Seattle speaking on "What's All the Fuss About Intelligent Design?" The free lecture, sponsored by the UW Department of Biology, takes place at 7 p.m. in Kane Hall 130
Dying comet 73P/Schwassmann Wachmann 3 is falling apart with a vengeance. Even the fragments are fragmenting. See a spectacular photo of "Fragment G" disintegrating into 15 or more pieces.
Several of the comet's fragments are visible through backyard telescopes, so amateur astronomers can monitor events themselves. Sky maps and details are available at
Ideas, comments and Web sites of interest to other teachers should be sent to Irene Svete, newsletter editor, at
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