April 14, 2008
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
-- UW ASTRONOMY & ESS FOR TEENS (9-12)
-- NEW NASA SCIENCE SITE
-- SCIENCE COMICS AVAILABLE (K-12)
-- NETWORKING FOR EDUCATORS (K-20)
-- LIMA QUEST CHALLENGE (4-8)
-- GUMMY GREENHOUSE GASES (K-4)
Interested in offering the University of Washington's Earth and Space Sciences 101 or Astronomy 101 for college credit at your high school?
On May 10, an orientation session for teachers interested in offering either of these courses during the 2008-09 school year will take place from 9:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. in Physics and Astronomy Bulding C341 on the UW Seattle campus. Information about program requirements and the UW in the High School Program can be obtained from Shannon Matson by calling 206-221-6223 or e-mailing
For general information on UW in the High School, see
NASA's Science Mission Directorate has launched a new Web site to provide in-depth coverage of past, present and future science missions.
Features include interactive searches for Earth, heliophysics, planetary and astrophysics missions; information on dark matter and dark energy, planets around other stars, climate change, Mars and space weather; a citizen-scientist page that includes a space calendar, solar system simulator and astronomical data center; and expanded area for educators and children.
Visit the new NASA science Web site at
The Scientific Committee on Solar-Terrestrial Physics is offering a series of free comics explaining topics such as cosmic rays, auroras, ozone holes and global warming.
Created at the Solar-Terrestrial Environment Laboratory (STEL) at Nagoya University, the comics have been translated into both in an English version and one with "blank" balloons to enable translation to other languages as well. These comics are meant to raise the curiosity of children and the awareness of those without a science background.
Registration is required to access the free comics. For more information, see
Muse -- a new social networking site created by the Internet2 K20 Initiative -- seeks to radically enhance collaboration, information-sharing, and technology opportunities between and amongst the Internet2-enabled higher education community and the 50,000 schools, community colleges, libraries, museums, zoos, and aquariums now connected to the Internet2 network.
The developers plan to introduce the ability for users create topically based communities, chat in real time about projects and interests, receive email "museletters" tailored to their specific interests, and provide RSS feeds to broadcast information on new users, projects, and organizations as the site grows. For more information, go to
The Landsat Image Mosaic of Antarctica (LIMA) is the first-ever true-color high-resolution satellite view of the Antarctic continent enabling everyone to see Antarctica as it appears in real life.
Using this view of Antarctica, students are asked to develop a research question surrounding a chosen feature of Antarctica and to debate the value of studying that area. Registration is now open and the proposal deadline is April 20. Educator guides are available to all. For more information, visit
Gummy Greenhouse Gases makes learning chemistry edible and fun. Using gumdrops and toothpicks, students make models of simple molecules of ozone, nitrous oxide, carbon dioxide, water vapor, and methane. In doing so, they learn more about the greenhouse effect and why too many of certain kinds of molecules in the air are likely to cause Earth to get warmer.
The lesson plan includes a link to a fact sheet with more information about the "good and bad" roles of ozone. A short video also shows how new space technology can literally paint a 3-D picture of these gases all around the globe. For more information, go to
Ideas, comments and Web sites of interest to other teachers should be sent to Irene Svete, newsletter editor, at
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.