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More Free Resources: NASA

Bonnie Bracey Sutton

Teacher Agent of Change, Power of US Foundation
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I recently participated in the Airspace Systems Education Cohort at the NASA Ames Research Center, in Mountain View, California. The program engaged us in scientific inquiry at the leading edge of education and technology and encouraged us to return to our communities to bolster the quality of science instruction in schools as teacher trainers. I've used NASA education resources for years, but this experience reminded me that so many teachers don't take advantage of the many fine resources and opportunities NASA offers.

Photo courtesy of Dominic Hart

We have so few minority schoolchildren accepting the challenge of studying mathematics, science, engineering, and technology that teachers should make programs, such as NASA Quest Challenges, a part of the content they choose to help prepare students for the future and to make learning more relevant. NASA Quest Challenges are free Web-based interactive explorations designed to engage students in authentic scientific and engineering processes. The solutions relate to issues NASA personnel encounter daily.

My other pick from NASA is Smart Skies, designed for grades 5-9.

Check out these resources and spend some time on the NASA Web site to find lots of resources to enliven your curriculum.

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Bonnie Bracey Sutton

Teacher Agent of Change, Power of US Foundation

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Anonymous (not verified)

Standards, Space Shuttles and Stars

* Finding NASA's Standards-Aligned Educational Materials

Do you need NASA standards-aligned curriculum supplements for your classroom? Of course you do! But how can you find what you need in a clear, organized way? The answer is the NASA Science Education Standards "Quilts".

The Jet Propulsion Laboratory has developed three quilts (Space Science, Mathematics, and California Science) to help educators zero in on the NASA materials that support the standards. Each quilt is a matrix that allows you to select grade span, topic and standards area. At the intersection of those three elements is a list of NASA activities, a summary of each activity and a link to view or download.

Each quilt opens a pop-up window (so disable your blockers just for us). Then just select your grade span and click on the light blue boxes. Some quilt columns extend off to the right so scroll over there too. Click on the topics and standards for an explanation of what they mean. There are also text and spreadsheet versions of the quilts.

This isn't a list of all of NASA's educational materials but more and more items are being added to the quilt. We don't guess about how to fill out the quilts; educators tell us where to place the lessons and activities. We hope that you will find this to be a useful tool that speeds your navigation through many of the excellent educational resources that NASA has for you.

Remember, the NASA Educator Resource Center Network has free copies of most NASA educator guides. Check your local ERC for availability. NASA's Central Operation of Resources for Educators (CORE) has materials too, at modest cost, and OfficeMax allows you to order NASA materials an pick them up at your local store. Learn all about your options at NASA's Educational materials website
* Space Shuttle Mission STS-115

Bonnie Bracey Sutton

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