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In this activity, students use base-two slide rules, log tapes, and calculators to practice raising exponents in base notation and pulling down exponents in log notation. Students will develop an understanding that antilog notation expresses the... (View More) exact same idea as raising a base to a power. This activity is activity C2 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)

In this activity students construct Log Rulers, finely calibrated in base-10 exponents and numbers (logs and antilogs). They practice reading these scales as accurately as possible, listing all certain figures plus one uncertain figure. This is... (View More) activity D1 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)

In this activity students construct Log Tapes calibrated in base-ten exponents, then use them to derive relationships between base-ten logs (exponents) and antilogs (ordinary numbers). This is activity B1 in the "Far Out Math" educator's guide.... (View More) 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)

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)

In this activity, students construct classic slide rules and use them like calculators. Students use the slide rules to read scales, determine significant figures, and estimate decimal places. This is activity D3 in the "Far Out Math" educator's... (View More) 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 activity focuses on the question, What do active galaxies look like when viewed from different distances? Students work in small groups to learn about the small angle formula, construct a template, and use it to correctly measure the angular... (View More) size of a person. Students then use the Active Galaxies Poster to measure the angular size of a galaxy. Materials are commonly available or inexpensive items, e.g., scissors, cardboard, construction paper, calculator, protractor, meter stick or measuring tape). Includes background information, glossary, essential questions, extension activities, transfer activities, adaptations for visually-impaired students, and an answer key. This is activity 2 of 3 in the Active Galaxies Educators Guide. (View Less)

In this activity, students graph second and third order functions, discovering an inverse relationship between squares and square roots and between cubes and cube roots. Students graph these functions on both linear grid (evenly spaced numbers), and... (View More) a log-log grid (evenly space exponents). Graph lines that curve on linear grids transform into straight lines on the log-log grids, with slopes equal to their exponential powers. This activity is activity E3 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 activity is one of several in which students are required to access and analyze actual data from NASA missions, including video "interviews" with real NASA scientists, to solve a mystery. In this mystery, students are challenged to determine if... (View More) a signal from space has a natural origin, or if it actually is a message from aliens. Alien Bandstand can be used as a supplemental learning tool to reinforce the scientific method, and as an example of how scientists analyze data in real-world situations. It is one of several activities within "Space Mysteries," a series of inquiry-driven, interactive Web explorations. Each Mystery in "Space Mysteries" is designed to teach at least one physical science concept (e.g. interactions of energy and matter, structures and properties of matter, energy, motion, or forces), and is accompanied by materials to be used by classroom teachers. (View Less)

The is one several activities in which students are required to access and analyze actual data from NASA missions, including video interviews with real NASA scientists, to solve a mystery. In this mystery, students explore stars and their... (View More) properties, investigate the different characteristics of stars, and look for trends and patterns to determine what kinds of stars different companies are buying, and why. During the activity, students analyze a list of stars purchased by each company using tools showing a star's luminosity in infrared, x-ray, and visible ranges of light, and tools that plot the stars in different ways. Star Market can be used as a supplemental learning tool to support the scientific method, understanding the life cycle of stars, and learning about the different reasons scientists study stars. It is one several activities within "Space Mysteries," a series of inquiry-driven, interactive Web explorations. Each Mystery in "Space Mysteries" is designed to teach at least one physical science concept (e.g. interactions of energy and matter, structures and properties of matter, energy, motion, or forces), and is accompanied by materials to be used by classroom teachers. (View Less)

This activity is one of several in which students are required to access and analyze actual data from NASA missions, including video "interviews" with real NASA scientists, to solve a mystery. In this mystery, students learn about the force of... (View More) gravity and how scientists analyze data by studying the properties of different objects in space. Live! From 2-Alpha can be used to support instruction about forces and motion, origin and evolution of the universe, and the interaction of energy and matter. This activity is one of several in "Space Mysteries," a series of inquiry-driven, interactive Web explorations. Each Mystery in "Space Mysteries" is designed to teach at least one physical science concept (e.g. interactions of energy and matter, structures and properties of matter, energy, motion, or forces), and is accompanied by materials to be used by classroom teachers. (View Less)