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**Earth and space science**

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In this activity, students learn about the motion of the Sun in relation to the Earth, and how geographic directions are defined. Students use a tetherball pole (or an alternative) as a gnomon and the shadow the Sun casts to determine the exact... (View More) directions of north, south, east and west. The best tetherball pole to use is one that is in full sunlight for most of the day, one that is vertical and unbent, and one that is built on asphalt or concrete. This activity can be done as a whole class or individual project. Part 1 of this activity involves the initial marking of the tetherball pole shadow using chalk (about 10 minutes) and subsequent markings by one or two students (less than 5 minutes) every half hour over a four-hour period. Students keep a record of the gnomon’s shadow by recording a sketch in their logs. Part 2 of this activity involves using a piece of string to connect the dots after the final observation, then bisecting this arc to determine north and south. The lesson includes discussion questions, background information about gnomons, and a math extension activity making and graphing the tetherball's shadow length at different times. This activity is the fifth lesson in the Ancient Eyes Look to the Skies curriculum guide. (View Less)

In this interactive, online activity, bias is explored when the students decide which of several sampling methods are biased. They see how bias affects the percentage of irregular galaxies determined to be in the sample from the Deep Field. After... (View More) completing this activity students will be able to analyze and identify sampling methods that reduce bias. Student may work independently or in small groups to complete each activity. This activity is apart of the online exploration, Galaxy Hunter. Detailed teacher pages, identified as Teaching Tips on the title pages of the activity, provide science background information, lesson plan ideas, related resources, and alignment with national education standards. (View Less)

In this interactive, online activity students elect a simple random sample to draw conclusions from data as presented in the Hubble Deep Field-North and Hubble Deep Field-South images. The optimal sample size is determined by exploring sample... (View More) variability, which is introduced through a min/max plot. The mean and median are added in order to pinpoint the spot where variability settles down and the measures of central tendency approach a constant value. The point where that first occurs is the smallest reasonable sample size. Students may work independently or in small groups to complete each activity. This interactive online activity is apart of the online exploration "Galaxy Hunter." Detailed teacher pages, identified as Teaching Tips on the title pages of the activity, provide science background information, lesson plan ideas, related resources, and alignment with national education standards. Use sample variability to determine optimal sample size. (View Less)

In this assessment activity, students generate a data sample from either the Hubble Deep Field-North or Hubble Deep Field-South images, and compare the sample to data from the unselected field. This provides students with a real-life example of how... (View More) statistics can be used by scientists. After completing this activity students will be able to compare sample data with the population parameter to determine accuracy of sampling techniques and use statistical data to make conjectures about the universe. This interactive online activity is part of the online exploration “Galaxy Hunter”. Detailed teacher pages, identified as Teaching Tips on the title pages of the activity, provide science background information, lesson plan ideas, related resources, and alignment with national education standards. (View Less)

In this activity students develop a simplified log table using information from their Log Tapes. Then they use it to solve arithmetic problems by looking up and combining logs, and finding the antilog. Because these problems are extremely simple,... (View More) students appreciate the logic of logarithms without getting bogged down in the arithmetic detail and error. This is activity B3 in the "Far Out Math" educator's guide. Lessons in the guide include activities in which students measure,compare quantities as orders of magnitude, become familiar with scientific notation, and develop an understanding of exponents and logarithms using examples from NASA's GLAST mission. These are skills needed to understand the very large and very small quantities characteristic of astronomical observations. Note: In 2008, GLAST was renamed Fermi, for the physicist Enrico Fermi. (View Less)

This is an activity about determining the distance of a solar flare from the center of the Sun's disk. Learners will use transparency grids overlaid on images of the Sun in order to calculate the distance of a solar flare, similar to a signal... (View More) detection method used by scientists. This is the second activity in the lesson titled, How Does HESSI Take a Picture? (View Less)

This is an activity about auroras. Learners will use images from the IMAGE (Imager for Magnetopause-to-Aurora Global Exploration) satellite and measure the diameter of aurora ovals to identify if there is a correlation between severe magnetic storms... (View More) and larger auroras. This is the seventeenth activity in the Exploring the Earth's Magnetic Field: An IMAGE Satellite Guide to the Magnetosphere educators guide. (View Less)

This is an activity about determining the size of a solar flare. Learners will measure the diameter of a solar flare by making calculations using transparency grids overlaid on images of the Sun. This is the third activity as part of the "How Does... (View More) HESSI Take a Picture" lesson. (View Less)

This activity shows how an ordinary ruler can measure human reaction time (RT). Learners will convert a standard ruler into a time ruler (relating time and distance) and measure each others RT. They will also calculate means and variances and the RT... (View More) required to accomplish a specific task. Additional resources and an extension to this activity are available. This resource is from PUMAS - Practical Uses of Math and Science - a collection of brief examples created by scientists and engineers showing how math and science topics taught in K-12 classes have real world applications. (View Less)

In this activity, students learn that probability is a way of measuring the chance of something happening. Students make predictions and match predictions with data, using a "probability tester" made from two golf tees. The activity includes a... (View More) student data sheet. The resource is part of the teacher's guide accompanying the video, NASA SCI Files: The Case of the Phenomenal Weather. Lesson objectives supported by the video, additional resources, teaching tips and an answer sheet are included in the teacher's guide. (View Less)