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Educational Level:
Upper elementary  
Instructional Strategies:
Teamwork  
Hands-on learning  
Topics/Subjects:
Engineering and technology  
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Learners design and build a device that can take a core sample from a potato. Includes challenge video, leader notes, and handouts. Two supplemental videos are included: 1) NASA's Curiosity rover drills into a rock on Mars and collects a sample and... (View More)

Learners design and build an airbag system that can safely land an egg dropped onto the floor. Includes challenge video, leader notes, and handouts. Two supplemental videos are included: 1) An airbag landing system in action as a NASA rover lands on... (View More)

Learners design, build, and improve a model that mimics gravity-assisted space travel. The design solution enables a steel ball (spacecraft) to roll past a magnet (force exerted by a planet), which will alter its direction in order to hit a... (View More)

Learners design and build a device that can pass above a surface and detect magnetic fields. The video shows kids using the engineering design process, applying a variety of science concepts (e.g., force, magnetic fields, mapping), and learning... (View More)

The MISSIONMaker program uses art and the making experience to investigate NASA mission design, engineering and space exploration. Using common materials, students build a rover that incorporates six simple machines. The building instructions... (View More)

This multi-phased learning package progresses from guided engineering to an open mission-design challenge. Each step is scaffolded and includes easy-to-implement teaching tools, lessons and art activities. Learners, working in collaborative teams,... (View More)

Acting as the ICESat-2 satellite, students investigate the reflection of light photons off Earth's surface by catching and recording a number of photons. Using bouncy balls to represent the photons, students drop, let bounce once and try to catch in... (View More)

Students participate in a series of activities to discover how astronomers use computers to create images and understand data. No programming experience is required; students will use pencilcode.net to complete such activities as creating a color,... (View More)

Audience: Elementary school, Middle school, High school
Materials Cost: Free

This activity demonstrates optical properties of water: that different constituents in water affect the transmission, absorption, and scattering of different colors in the visible light spectrum. Inexpensive, off-the-shelf components are used to... (View More)

In this game, students use the accompanying "playing cards" to plan a mission to Mars. The mission must produce significant science returns while also meeting several constraints such as budget, mass and power. The lesson is part of the Mars... (View More)

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