Washington NASA Space Grant Consortium

May 8, 2007

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

-- ASTRONOMY FOR AFTERSHOOL EDUCATORS
-- SCIENCE LECTURES FOR TEENS (7-10)
-- BIG TOYS, BIG FUN (5-12)
-- GLOBE WATERSHED PROJECT WORKSHOP (5-12)
-- NEW TYPE OF SUPERNOVA?
-- DON'T MISS OUT! (K-12)

--------

ASTRONOMY FOR AFTERSHOOL EDUCATORS

Space is still available in the May 23 session of Astronomy Is Looking Up, a workshop offered to out-of-school time staff and leaders working with children ages 5-10. Participants will learn about the solar system (including what to say about Pluto) while discovering engaging activities that can be done during the day and no matter what the Northwest weather. Credits of 2 STARS provided free. For more information, download the application and flier at http://www.waspacegrant.org/pdf/AstronomyIsLookingUp.pdf or visit School's Out Washington at http://schoolsoutwashington.org/

SCIENCE LECTURES FOR TEENS (7-10)

Seattle Town Hall's Teen Science Lectures this month presents Pulitzer Prize-winning science writer Natalie Angier on the fundamentals of science and her forthcoming book, "The Canon: A Whirligig Tour of the Beautiful Basics of Science" and KEXP's Lisa Shimizu—trained by Al Gore through The Climate Project—on "An Inconvenient Truth" and the science of climate change. The free lectures, set for May 15 and 29, feature a 30-minute presentation followed by open Q&A session. Lectures take place 4-5 p.m. at Seattle Town Hall, Eighth Avenue and Seneca Street. Seating is limited and RSVPs are requested. In most cases, teachers will need to reserve three weeks in advance. For more information, contact Wier Harman at 206-652-4255, Ext. 0

BIG TOYS, BIG FUN (5-12)

Exploring another planet requires a vehicle that can withstand the most extreme conditions imaginable, but for Kobie Boykins—one of the engineers responsible for building the enduring Mars Exploration Rovers—this challenge is all in a day's work. On May 24, join Kobie Boykins from 6-8 p.m. (Eastern) for a NASA JPL/NSTA Web seminar on robotics engineering. The seminar provides a look "behind the scenes" of what it was like to build the twin rovers that are still driving across the surface of Mars. To register, go to http://institute.nsta.org/JPL/webseminar4.asp

GLOBE WATERSHED PROJECT WORKSHOP (5-12)

Where does our water come from? Do we have enough or is the supply limited? What factors affect our flow of water? The GLOBE Watershed Dynamics Project will enable teachers and their students to answer these questions about their own watersheds. A three-day workshop to help middle and high school science teachers get started is being held August 7-9 in Boulder, Colo. Through the project, students will have an opportunity to conduct investigations on watershed behavior on local, regional, and national scales, using near real-time and archival data from a hydrologic database covering the entire continental U.S. Participants will use My World GIS, a geographic information system (GIS) specifically designed for educational use to investigate the interrelationships between precipitation, evaporation and surface runoff on a regional and national scale. Emphasis will be placed on water availability in different regions of the country and how these variables change throughout the year. Travel support may be available for a limited number of out-of-town participants. For more information, visit http://www.globe.gov/fsl/html/templ.cgi?watersheds&lang=en&nav=1

NEW TYPE OF SUPERNOVA?

The brightest stellar explosion ever recorded may be a long-sought new type of supernova, according to observations by NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory and ground-based optical telescopes. This discovery indicates that violent explosions of extremely massive stars were relatively common in the early universe, and that a similar explosion may be ready to go off in our own galaxy. To read the whole story, go to http://science.nasa.gov/headlines/y2007/07may_bigsupernova.htm?list820645

DON'T MISS OUT! (K-12)

NASA Education's Act Now page highlights upcoming NASA opportunities available for teachers and students. The special section for educators features information about upcoming workshops, grants, online activities, faculty fellowships and conferences in one convenient location. To keep track of NASA's changing list of student and teacher opportunities, bookmark http://www.nasa.gov/audience/foreducators/topnav/actnow/index.html

FEEDBACK

Ideas, comments and Web sites of interest to other teachers should be sent to Irene Svete, newsletter editor, at isvete@u.washington.edu

--------

If you are not a regular subscriber and would like to receive our newsletter, simply go to UW's Mailman and fill in a subscription form. Concerned about spam? Please note Space Grant does not sell its address lists.