Lively Lessons: Space Day

After learning about natural resources, recycling, and alternative fuels during Earth Day, we transition this week’s Lively Lesson from Earth to the universe—just in time for Space Day.

2015 is an exciting year fspacedayor planetary exploration with a number of important NASA missions and significant discoveries. In celebration of Space Day, join us on May 1st, live from NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center to find out more about NASA’s missions, their cutting-edge discoveries, and why it is important for us to continue to explore the solar system.

Hosts
Patti Duncan, Discovery Education
Dr. James Garvin, GSFC Chief Scientist

Join the Discussion
Join the live discussion on Twitter @DiscoveryEd with hashtag #OfThePeople.

Learn more about the Virtual Field Trip and register your class here: Discovery Education Of the People: Space Day 2015.

Whether or not your class attends the Space Day Virtual Field Trip, below are some great lesson ideas to help immerse students into the endless wonders of the cosmos.

Instructional Practice

  1. Begin by watching the following programs about space travel to Mars: Outer Space: First Humans on Mars and One-Way Ticket to the Red Planet. In the next 15 years, people will be traveling to Mars to set up space stations. You have been chosen to be one of those explorers. You will be assigned a living area in the space station. Your living area will be 3m x 1m. Draw a picture of your living area including a place to sleep, a place to work, and a place to store items. What technology needs to be included in your living area in order for you to survive? Be sure to label your drawing and include the dimensions.mars
  2. Write a personified short story or graphic story about the exploration and discoveries on Mars from the perspective of the Mars Rover.
  3. Review these two video segments about recent space explorations: Outer Space: Earth-Sized Planet Discovered and The PBS NewsHour: First Rock from the Sun: Exploring Mercury. The United States’ interest in space exploration developed during the 1950’s with the former Soviet Union’s launch of Sputnik. Create a timeline of events from the beginning of the space race to present day.
  4. NASA scientists use the Hubble Space Telescope to study the rate and expansion of the cosmos and the age of the universe by observing Galaxy 4414. What do you see, know, and wonder about when you look at this photo? Create a board using the Discovery Education Board Builder tool to demonstrate the impact the Hubble Space Telescope has had on science, technology, and society.

Looking for more Space Day resources?
Lodge McCammon Songs: Natural Satellites (Solar System) explores the different types of natural satellites that exist in the universe.
United States: Big Bang Discovery provides more information about how the universe began.
Stuff You Missed in History Class Podcast: Five Amazing Astronomical Discoveries shares five space discoveries, beginning with the work of Copernicus. This podcast is available for Streaming Plus users only.

Do you plan to attend the Virtual Field Trip? How will your class celebrate Space Day? Share any ideas or comments below!

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