October 30, 2012
WSGC Newsletter for Educators
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
-- EDUCATOR OPEN HOUSE (K-12)
-- NASA WAVELENGTH (Pre-K-12+)
-- NASA SPINOFF VIDEO CONTEST (3-12)
-- ASTEROID MAPPERS NEEDED
On November 12, the Museum of Flight will hold a special educator open house, featuring a special opportunity to visit the new Charles Simonyi Space Gallery and tour the NASA Space Shuttle Trainer.
Stretching over 100 feet, and four stories high, the artifact was used by NASA to train every space shuttle astronaut. The museum has added stairs and ramps to make the expansive cargo bay accessible to all visitors, including those with disabilities.
The open house will take place from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. and is free for public, private, and home school educators, administrators, and their families with valid Educator ID. For more information, visit
NASA Wavelength features hundreds of NASA science resources organized by topic and audience level from pre-kindergarten to college (including those in out-of-school programs).
The site features peer-reviewed resources including award-winning curriculum tools, activities that allow students and teachers to learn about and participate in NASA missions, exhibits and planetarium shows and more. Users will also be able to receive e-mail updates on new content and share the latest information through social media.
For access to NASA Wavelength, visit
The Optimus Prime Spinoff Award Contest (named for the popular leader of the Transformers) is designed to raise students' awareness of technology transfer efforts and how NASA technologies contribute to our everyday lives.
Participants will create and submit a three- to five-minute video on a selected NASA spinoff technology. Entries will be posted on the NASA YouTube channel and the public will be responsible for the first round of judging. The top five submissions from each of the three grade groups (elementary, middle and high school) will advance for final judging by a NASA panel.
The winners will be the guests of honor at the Optimus Prime Spinoff Contest awards ceremony next May. While there, the students will receive the OPTIMUS PRIME Spinoff Contest trophy and have the opportunity to meet NASA VIPs, astronauts and actor Peter Cullen, who voices the character Optimus Prime.
Participants must register for the contest by December 15, 2012. Video entries are due January 31, 2013. For more information, go to
During the 13 months that Dawn orbited the giant protoplanet Vesta, the mission gathered tens of thousands of images. Now Dawn’s new citizen science project, Asteroid Mappers, invites the public to help analyze and interpret these cool images from Vesta.
The accumulated findings by citizen scientists can help the Dawn Science Team make sense of new elements on the surface of Vesta: its age, its composition, its revealing patterns. For more information and to participate, visit
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