October 12, 2009
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
-- THE MOON: A RESOURCE GUIDE (K-12)
-- TEST NEW SCIENCE CURRICULUM (4-5)
-- MUSEUM OF FLIGHT GRANTS (4-12)
-- NATUREMAPPING FOR BEACHES TRAINING
-- NASA SPONSORS STUDENT WATER RECYCLING COMPETITION (5-8)
-- NASA LAUNCHES NEW EDUCATION INITIATIVES WITH DISNEY'S BUZZ LIGHTYEAR
The Astronomical Society of the Pacific has created an annotated list of moon resources for educators, amateur astronomers, and everyone who would like to know more about the Earth's only natural satellite.
The guide covers our scientific understanding of the moon as a world, the appearance of the moon in our skies, and tips for observing the moon through binoculars or small telescopes. It also suggests a few ways to learn more about the moon in popular culture and historical events. To view the guide, go to
The Lawrence Hall of Science -- publishers of the GEMS curriculum - is seeking teachers in grades 4-5 to participate in the 2009-2010 field test of new units for the Seeds of Science/Roots of Reading curriculum.
Field test teachers will be asked to teach one unit (20-40 sessions in length) between September through November 2009, or January through March of 2010. Field testers will keep test kit materials and be provided a final version of the complete unit tested, including materials kits, once they are in production.
For more information, go to
The Museum of Flight offers grant assistance to teachers who would like their classes to attend the museum's educational programs.
To qualify for grant assistance (excluding the FedEx scholarship), the school or non-profit youth organization must have a minimum of 35% of students on a federal free or reduced lunch program.
Eligible schools/groups must apply for grant assistance at least two weeks prior to the date of their program. Grants are allocated on a first-come, first-served basis as long as funding is available.
For applications and information, go to
Offered through Ocean Learning Communities (the local Center for Ocean Sciences Education Excellence), the NatureMapping training is for organizations that lead education-based marine programs on local beaches and want to use inquiry-based approaches to promote a field investigation design in their marine education programs in order to explore beaches.
Lunch is provided and free clock hours are available through the Pacific Education Institute. For more information, go to
NASA is inviting students in grades 5-8 to compete in a waste limitation management and recycling design challenge.
Students will design and test water recycling systems that could be used for future exploration of the moon.The top three teams will receive awards, and the first place team will receive an expense-paid trip to NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
Teams of up to six students and one teacher or mentor should submit their proposals and results to NASA for evaluation by Feb. 1, 2010. For more information, go to
NASA and Disney Parks collaborated to carry toy space ranger Buzz Lightyear into orbit aboard the International Space Station and are using Buzz to spark students' interest in two new educational design challenges.
1) Buzz Lightyear Mission Patch Design Challenge (ages 6-12): The student who submits the most creative mission patch and 100-word essay will win a tour of NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida and a trip to Walt Disney World Resort.
2) Kids in Micro-g Experiment Challenge (grades 5-8): Students devise experiments to be conducted on board the International Space Station.
For more information about both challenges, 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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