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This is a lesson about the path of one xenon ion through an ion propulsion engine. Learners will focus on what a single xenon ion sees and does as it goes through the reactions and processes that provide the ion jet propulsion engine's thrust. They... (View More)

Audience: High school
Materials Cost: Free

This is a lesson about detecting ice on the permanently shadowed craters of Mercury and the Moon. Learners will consider what might be in that ice and will examine why the polar regions of Earth, Mercury and the Moon are colder than elsewhere on the... (View More)

This is a lesson about robotic exploration of the solar system. Learners will explore the difference between natural and artificial satellites and use images taken by robotic spacecraft and telescopes to gain an understanding of the Earth's place in... (View More)

This lesson is about cleanroom technology and the importance of contamination control. Learners will discover the different types of industries that use cleanrooms. The activity centers on drawing a parallel between suiting up for the Genesis... (View More)

Audience: Middle school, High school
Materials Cost: Free

This is an annotated children's story about the Dawn mission to Vesta and Ceres in the asteroid belt. Learners will dissect the story for real and fictional objects and places in the solar system, and for those scientific concepts or processes that... (View More)

Audience: Elementary school
Materials Cost: Free

This activity explores how ancient Sun observers made use of natural and built structures to mark solar alignments observed at different times of the year, particularly around the solstices and equinoxes. In Part 1, the teacher prepares a horizon... (View More)

In this problem-based learning activity, students learn how the intensity and distribution of rainfall and the structure of clouds are critical information for flight navigators. Students assume the role of climatologists and assist a newspaper... (View More)

Keywords: Cloud structure
Audience: Elementary school, Middle school
Materials Cost: Free per student

Highly productive commercial agriculture, known as industrial agriculture, is the focus of this investigation. Students will analyze and compare the inputs and outputs of industrial agriculture after reading background information, examining photos... (View More)

Keywords: Farming

The Aral Sea, located between Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan, is diminishing in size. Students must analyze and interpret the background information, photos, images and data provided in order to determine the causes of the size change as well as the... (View More)

Keywords: GIS

Students confront the challenge of improving global agricultural production in order to feed increasingly larger populations. Students evaluate tables, maps, graphs, photos and satellite images detailing global population growth patterns and... (View More)