It's Back to School for the Space Foundation Education Team
Summer closes with a successful completion of Space Discovery Institute courses and a space education presence at both the Democratic and Republican National Conventions. During Space Jam 2008, Bryan DeBates, senior aerospace education specialist, informed attendees and guests on the importance of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education and shared with them how the Space Foundation supports these efforts. Now, it is back to school time for the Space Foundation education team with a full schedule of upcoming September events reaching out to teachers, students, and parents.
On Sept.5-6, the Partnership in Innovative Preparation for Educators and Students (PIPES) program will conduct a two-day course taught by the education team at the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs (UCCS). The program, geared for Colorado Springs area teachers, concentrates on Geographic Information Systems. On September 5, participants will travel to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) headquarters in Boulder, Colo., for a tour of the facility and observation of "Science on a Sphere," an educational program developed by NOAA to give people a new perspective of the universe including Earth's 3-D surface, geography of the moon and Mars, and x-ray view of the sun. On Saturday, Sept. 6, participants will use the computer lab at UCCS to learn about GIS systems and design a model using the software.
The Space Foundation education team is set to participate in the Sally Ride Science Festival on Sept. 13 at UCCS. The workshop is designed to excite teenage girls about STEM and motivate them to pursue careers in science. The education team will be hosting a booth at the fair, as well as teaching a workshop. The Space Foundation is proud to be one of the many groups represented at this event.
During the following weekend, Sept. 20, the team will be traveling to Los Angeles to participate in the Competitiveness Crisis Council Summit. This workshop is dedicated to middle school students, parents, and educators. The Space Foundation will be hosting a booth at the conference and teaching two sessions. One session will be based on the physiological effects of microgravity and the other will involve a lesson on thrust vectoring.
On Sept. 29, the Space Foundation will host a Moon Rock Certification night for local Colorado Springs teachers, including Space Foundation Teacher Liaisons. Ms. Lisa Brown from the NASA Aerospace Education Services Project office will bring the moon rocks and instruct the class. Educators will participate in hands-on activities and create take-home materials for use in their classrooms. Attendees will be also able to check out moon rocks.
In addition to the numerous upcoming education events, the education team continues to reach out to students from north Denver to Pueblo through the Science, Technology, and Academic Readiness for Space (STARS) program. STARS is typically an after-school program designed for PreK-12 students to support and reinforce STEM education being taught in the classroom. Taught by Space Foundation education team members, the classes consist of hands-on activities designed to further interest students in space and the sciences.
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