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This is an activity about the atmospheric conditions (greenhouse strength, atmospheric thickness) Mars needs to maintain surface water. Learners will use a computer interactive to learn about Mars past and present before exploring the pressure and... (View More) greenhouse strength needed for Mars to have a watery surface as it had in the past. This lesson is part of Project Spectra, a science and engineering education program focusing on how light is used to explore the Solar System. (View Less)
This is an activity about the way distance, reflectivity, and atmosphere affect the temperature of a planet. Learners will create a planet using a computer game and change features of the planet to increase or decrease the planet's temperature. This... (View More) lesson is part of Project Spectra, a science and engineering education program focusing on how light is used to explore the Solar System. (View Less)
Students begin by determining dew point using an aluminum can, stirring rod, ice and thermometer. Air temperature is also measured and recorded. Students then use those two data in conjunction with the Lifting Condensation Level approximation, to... (View More) estimate the base altitude of visible (low level) clouds. The Students' Cloud Observations On-Line (S'COOL) project engages students in making and reporting ground truth observations of clouds then comparing those observations with data from the CERES satellite instrument. (View Less)
Learners create art inspired by authentic NASA planetary image data while learning to recognize the geology on planetary surfaces, uniquely inspiring learner engagement. This presentation and accompanying activity use the elements of art - shape,... (View More) line, color, texture, value - to make sense of features in NASA images, honing observation skills and inspiring questions. It aligns with the NGSS cross-cutting concept of Patterns. Videos, images, and an interactive poster that breaks down activity elements deepen user access. (View Less)
Two comic characters, Camilla Corona, a rubber chicken, and Colours O'IRIS, a peacock, explore questions relating to colors of light from the Sun. This comic is part of the series Tales from Stanford Solar.
This is a mini comic book about cosmic rays. Learners will construct the comic book and then read about cosmic rays, their effect, and how the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter's Cosmic Ray Telescope for the Effects of Radiation (CRaTER) detects them.
This is a make-it-yourself planisphere designed to show where Kepler is pointing. Learners can use it to locate exoplanets around stars in the night sky. It comes with two wheels: one with coordinate grid for plotting additional exoplanet stars and... (View More) one without grid that is easier to read; and two holders for varying latitudes (one for 30°-50° and one for 50°-70°). The product is updated approximately annually to incorporate improvements and any newly discovered planets orbiting naked eye stars. (View Less)
This is an activity about scale. Participants will arrange imagery of Earth and many other space objects in order of their size from smallest to largest, their distance from Earth's surface, their temperature from coolest to hottest, and/or their... (View More) age from youngest to oldest. By manipulating these images and discussing their ideas, children and adults represent and confront their own mental models of space and time. (View Less)
Learners explore Earth's rotation and the Moon's role in our 24-hour day, using their bodies to explore and model the Earth's daily motions in this kinethetic exploration. They relate the motion of the Earth about its axis (rotation) to the... (View More) appearance of the sky over the course of the day. Learners consider the role of the Moon in slowing Earth's rotation over time; if the Moon didn't exist, Earth might be spinning more quickly, giving us an eight-hour day! This activity is part of Explore! Marvel Moon, a series of activities developed specifically for use in libraries. (View Less)
This activity is about viewing the planet Mars (and others) through a telescope. Learners will go outside on a clear evening to view the planets and other celestial bodies for themselves. Using sky charts and other resources, and possibly in... (View More) partnership with a local astronomical society or club, children and their families view Mars with binoculars and/or telescopes. The children who have participated in the other Explore: Life on Mars? activities may serve as docents at this public, community event, sharing what they have done and learned about what life is, the requirements for life, and the possibility for life on Mars now — or in the past! It is recommended that the viewing event be paired with the hands-on experiment within the Searching for Life activity if space and time allow. It also includes specific tips for effectively engaging girls in STEM. This is activity 8 in Explore: Life on Mars? that was developed specifically for use in libraries. (View Less)