On Saturday November 26th, NASA launched the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) Spacecraft from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. View updates on NASA site here.
The Discovery Education Science Techbook includes excellent lessons on space explorations. The NASA launch of the MSL spacecraft is a great way to engage students in current events and motivate them for future innovation. Use the hands-on activity Time and Distance Chart to determine how long it would take humans to travel to Mars and then use the to investigate and monitor the MSL travel into space.
Investigation tools are very important in science. The NASA site discusses how scientists learn about Mars remotely. The Exploration Watching the Universe, is a great way for students to learn about telescopes and how astronomers use them to view objects in space.