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Hear from a NASA scientist and a NASA engineer as they describe their roles in the design and development of one aspect of the James Webb Space Telescope. The video reveals the importance of collaboration in continually moving exploration forward.... (View More)

This Flash-based interactive provides access to illustrations, visualizations, videos, and near-real time images of the Sun from a variety of NASA satellites. Learners can access this information to supplement other materials related to the Sun and... (View More)

This 12-page educational comic book introduces readers to the Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) mission. Using the Japanese anime art style, the comic book explains the satellite technology and the mission goals and applications. Supplemental... (View More)

Students simulate the process of remote sensing by using common materials to represent Earth’s different ground coverings and a light meter to represent satellite instruments. The concept of albedo and its importance in Earth’s radiation budget... (View More)

The lithograph features illustrations, statistics and science goals of the James Webb Space Telescope. The accompanying classroom activity prompts students to use the images and text to generate questions about the telescope. Students then research... (View More)

Audience: Middle school, High school
Materials Cost: Free

This interactive, web-based tool allows you to calibrate your eye by practicing cloud cover estimation using images on the computer.

In this interactive tutorial, learners can explore the physics of contrail formation in the atmosphere and develop the ability to recognize the several types of contrails that form under varying atmospheric conditions. Practice classifying the type... (View More)

This interactive, web-based tool asks a series of questions to help the learner narrow down the type of cloud they are observing. It can be used both for practice and in the field to identify clouds. This resource is part of The GLOBE Program... (View More)

Explore lunar phases as viewed from Earth using paper plates. While standing in the appropriate spot in the moon's orbit, students hold paper plates that depict the Moon's phase. This activity can be used to assess understanding of lunar phases or... (View More)

Explore lunar phases as viewed from Earth using a golf ball and an ultraviolet light. With the student's head representing Earth, students hold and move the golf ball to demonstrate the cause of the Moon's phases in their correct order. Related Next... (View More)

Using stickers created from the templates provided, students create a Venn diagram of objects in our solar system, our galaxy and the universe. This short activity can be used as a formative assessment.

A collection of nine atmospheric science and geography activities that guide students in developing the skills used to analyze GLOBE environmental data. GLOBE (Global Learning and Observation to Benefit the Environment) is a worldwide, hands-on,... (View More)

Students analyze and interpret the accompanying large-format images of Mars taken by NASA’s Mars Thermal Emission Imaging System (THEMIS) camera. The analysis involves identifying geologic features, calibrating the size of those features, and... (View More)

Students use the research topic questions generated in the earlier lesson entitled, “Mars Image Analysis,” to refine testable questions and develop hypotheses. The lesson is part of the Mars Education Program series; it models scientific inquiry... (View More)

Keywords: NSTA2013; MSIP
Audience: Elementary school, Middle school, High school
Materials Cost: Free

Each of us is made from star stuff. But how are stars formed? Take a closer look at the life cycles of stars and learn where stars come from, how they've changed, and what happens to stars when their lives come to an end. Find out about your... (View More)

Fresh water resources- their quantity, location and distribution- are briefly discussed in this two-page article. The article can be used as a "reading to be informed" activity in a stand-alone fashion or can be incorporated into a lesson plan.

Audience: Middle school, High school, Informal education
Materials Cost: Free

The basic chemistry of water, along with a brief glimpse into water's origin on Earth, are discussed in this two page article. The article can be used as a "reading to be informed" activity in a stand-alone fashion or can be incorporated into a... (View More)

Keywords: Water chemistry
Audience: Middle school, High school, Informal education
Materials Cost: Free

A Hovmuller plot is a diagram that visibly displays data patterns from a selected latitude or longitude over a time period. Through a storyline and several samples, students are introduced to a Hovmuller plot of temperature data along a longitude in... (View More)

Audience: High school
Materials Cost: Free

Students will use educational materials from NASA's Cosmic Times to create their own mash-up (an image, audio or video created by combining two or more sources of media into a new work). This lesson offers the opportunity to use media mash-up... (View More)

This online Flash interactive simulates the process of discovering new exoplanets using the transit method. Learners explore a simulated star field, record data, make measurements and do calculations to discover new planets. Instructional videos and... (View More)

Audience: Middle school, High school
Materials Cost: Free

This two-page lithograph features an infrared image entitled, Pillars in the Monkey Head Nebula (the nebula also known as NGC 2174), located in the Orion constellation. The accompanying classroom activity "In Search of....Star Formation" is a... (View More)

Audience: High school
Materials Cost: Free

This lithograph features a Hubble image of the galaxy cluster Abell 2744, which exhibits a special feature known as gravitational lensing. The backside includes a description of the image and its features. Students use the image and the information... (View More)

Audience: High school
Materials Cost: Free

This is a two-page lithograph featuring the Cepheid Variable Star RS Puppis, an example of a special class of bright pulsating stars whose light and energy outputs vary over a set period of time. The text on the lithograph explains the historic... (View More)

Audience: High school
Materials Cost: Free

This unit consists of five activities, all of which focus on the response of plant life-cycle events to climate change. Students participate in discussions, field observations, data collection and analyses, plant identification, seed dispersal... (View More)

This unit consists of four activities. Students begin by examining temperature cycles (current, recent and historical) then add in factors such as carbon dioxide, precipitation and cloud cover to discover regional and global differences in the... (View More)

This unit focuses on the impacts of climate change on humans. Students participate in activities using "Character Cards" (included with the unit). The cards introduce fictitious citizens who describe the local economic, social and political factors... (View More)

This curriculum uses an inquiry-based Earth system science approach, and leverages Project BudBurst, a citizen science phenology project, to engage students in authentic research on plant and ecosystem responses to climate change. Students collect... (View More)

This curriculum uses an inquiry-based Earth system science approach, and leverages Project BudBurst, a citizen science phenology project, to engage students in authentic research on plant and ecosystem responses to climate change. Students collect... (View More)

This unit focuses on the impacts of climate change on humans. Students participate in activities using "Character Cards" (included with the unit). The cards introduce fictitious citizens who describe the local economic, social and political factors... (View More)

In this unit, students investigate temperature cycles, tree rings, CO2 records, and the effects of CO2 on temperature, precipitation and cloud cover to determine the impacts of changing climate on forests. After gathering and analyzing local data,... (View More)

This unit focuses on local plant species; students learn to identify common species and will examine their life cycle characteristics as evidence of climate change. Through the use of the national citizen science project titled Project BudBurst,... (View More)

Students are introduced to the carbon cycle through discussion, modeling and a game. Students then complete activities and investigations on Greenhouse gasses, photosynthesis, cellular respiration and ecosystem services (functions and values of... (View More)

This unit consists of two parts, each with several activities which require students to participate in investigations, discussions, computer data analysis, role-playing, and research. In Part 1, students examine the roles of Earth's energy balance... (View More)

Students read and analyze two different articles about medical imaging using X-rays. This activity is from the NuSTAR Educators Guide: X-Rays on Earth and from Space, which focuses on the science and engineering design of NASA's NuSTAR mission. The... (View More)

Audience: High school
Materials Cost: Free

This image from the Hubble Space Telescope reveals a panorama of turbulent star birth, located close enough to Earth that Hubble can resolve individual stars. The star factory resides 170,000 light-years away in the Large Magellanic Cloud, a small... (View More)

Keywords: Star formation
Audience: High school
Materials Cost: Free

This classic video explains the history, debate and continuing discussion of the definition of a planet.

Keywords: Dwarf planet
Audience: Middle school, High school, Informal education
Materials Cost: Free

This activity demonstrates optical properties of water: that different constituents in water affect the transmission, absorption, and scattering of different colors in the visible light spectrum. Inexpensive, off-the-shelf components are used to... (View More)

NuSTAR has a 10-meter rigid mast that separates the optics from the detector. Inspired by this, students will design, test, and build a lightweight mast 1 meter tall that can fully support the weight of a typical hardcover textbook (~2 kg). The... (View More)

This software package displays movies and images of the aurora and the Sun in various wavelengths from the ground and from NASA spacecraft; a tutorial about what space weather is and how the aurora is formed; and more. Users will also find real-time... (View More)

Keywords: Space weather; Auroras
Audience: High school, Informal education
Materials Cost: Free

This short (11:29 minutes) video features NASA scientists answering a set of student-designed questions related to NASA’s Global Precipitation Measurement satellite mission. The set of twelve questions were generated after students viewed... (View More)

Audience: Middle school, High school
Materials Cost: Free

Developed as a planetarium show, this video describes the unique environment of our solar system planets and a few satellites, along with some of the challenges and possible solutions for potential human habitation on each. Two versions of the video... (View More)

Students read and analyze four different articles about the NuSTAR mission discoveries regarding black holes. This activity is from the NuSTAR Educators Guide: X-Rays on Earth and from Space, which focuses on the science and engineering design of... (View More)

Keywords: Reading
Audience: High school
Materials Cost: Free

Students will use the law of reflection to reflect a laser beam off multiple mirrors to hit a sticker in a shoebox. Since X-ray telescopes must use grazing angles to collect X-rays, students will design layouts with the largest possible angles of... (View More)

This is an annotated, topical list of science fiction novels and stories based on more or less accurate astronomy and physics ideas. Learners can read fictional works that involve asteroids, astronomers, black holes, comets, space travel where... (View More)

Students participate in a series of activities to discover how astronomers use computers to create images and understand data. No programming experience is required; students will use pencilcode.net to complete such activities as creating a color,... (View More)

Audience: Elementary school, Middle school, High school
Materials Cost: Free

Students use a dipole magnet and compass to model and map Earth's magnetic field. They then induce a magnetic field to represent a Ring Current in order to observe the response to a fluctuating electric current caused by a solar storm. The lesson... (View More)

This is an online game associated with activities during Solar Week, a twice-yearly event in March and October during which classrooms are able to interact with scientists studying the Sun. Outside of Solar Week, information, activities, and... (View More)

This is a reading associated with activities during Solar Week, a twice-yearly event in March and October during which classrooms are able to interact with scientists studying the Sun. Outside of Solar Week, information, activities, and resources... (View More)

This is an activity during Solar Week, a twice-yearly event in March and October during which classrooms are able to interact with scientists studying the Sun. Outside of Solar Week, information, activities, and resources are archived and available... (View More)

This is a set of readings associated with activities during Solar Week, a twice-yearly event in March and October during which classrooms are able to interact with scientists studying the Sun. Outside of Solar Week, information, activities, and... (View More)

This is a reading associated with activities during Solar Week, a twice-yearly event in March and October during which classrooms are able to interact with scientists studying the Sun. Outside of Solar Week, information, activities, and resources... (View More)

This is a reading associated with activities during Solar Week, a twice-yearly event in March and October during which classrooms are able to interact with scientists studying the Sun. Outside of Solar Week, information, activities, and resources... (View More)

This is an online game associated with activities during Solar Week, a twice-yearly event in March and October during which classrooms are able to interact with scientists studying the Sun. Outside of Solar Week, information, activities, and... (View More)

This is a short online reading associated with activities during Solar Week, a twice-yearly event in March and October during which classrooms are able to interact with scientists studying the Sun. Outside of Solar Week, information, activities, and... (View More)

This is a game associated with activities during Solar Week, a twice-yearly event in March and October during which classrooms are able to interact with scientists studying the Sun. Outside of Solar Week, information, activities, and resources are... (View More)

This is an online game associated with activities during Solar Week, a twice-yearly event in March and October during which classrooms are able to interact with scientists studying the Sun. Outside of Solar Week, information, activities, and... (View More)

This is a set of readings associated with activities during Solar Week, a twice-yearly event in March and October during which classrooms are able to interact with scientists studying the Sun. Outside of Solar Week, information, activities, and... (View More)

This is a reading associated with activities during Solar Week, a twice-yearly event in March and October during which classrooms are able to interact with scientists studying the Sun. Outside of Solar Week, information, activities, and resources... (View More)

This is an online reading associated with activities during Solar Week, a twice-yearly event in March and October during which classrooms are able to interact with scientists studying the Sun. Outside of Solar Week, information, activities, and... (View More)

This is a set of readings associated with activities during Solar Week, a twice-yearly event in March and October during which classrooms are able to interact with scientists studying the Sun. Outside of Solar Week, information, activities, and... (View More)

This is a short online reading associated with activities during Solar Week, a twice-yearly event in March and October during which classrooms are able to interact with scientists studying the Sun. Outside of Solar Week, information, activities, and... (View More)

This is a reading and research activity associated with activities during Solar Week, a twice-yearly event in March and October during which classrooms are able to interact with scientists studying the Sun. Outside of Solar Week, information,... (View More)

This is a list of online resources associated with activities during Solar Week, a twice-yearly event in March and October during which classrooms are able to interact with scientists studying the Sun. Outside of Solar Week, information, activities,... (View More)

This is an online game associated with activities during Solar Week, a twice-yearly event in March and October during which classrooms are able to interact with scientists studying the Sun. Outside of Solar Week, information, activities, and... (View More)

This is an online lesson associated with activities during Solar Week, a twice-yearly event in March and October during which classrooms are able to interact with scientists studying the Sun. Outside of Solar Week, information, activities, and... (View More)

This is an activity during Solar Week, a twice-yearly event in March and October during which classrooms are able to interact with scientists studying the Sun. Outside of Solar Week, information, activities, and resources are archived and available... (View More)

This is an activity during Solar Week, a twice-yearly event in March and October during which classrooms are able to interact with scientists studying the Sun. Outside of Solar Week, information, activities, and resources are archived and available... (View More)

This is an activity during Solar Week, a twice-yearly event in March and October during which classrooms are able to interact with scientists studying the Sun. Outside of Solar Week, information, activities, and resources are archived and available... (View More)

This is an online lesson associated with activities during Solar Week, a twice-yearly event in March and October during which classrooms are able to interact with scientists studying the Sun. This activity is scheduled to occur during Monday of... (View More)

This is an activity during Solar Week, a twice-yearly event in March and October during which classrooms are able to interact with scientists studying the Sun. Outside of Solar Week, information, activities, and resources are archived and available... (View More)

This is an activity associated with activities during Solar Week, a twice-yearly event in March and October during which classrooms are able to interact with scientists studying the Sun. Outside of Solar Week, information, activities, and resources... (View More)

This activity includes a presentation with links to videos about scientists and engineers working with NASA's Global Precipitation Measurement Mission (from the Faces of GPM series), as well as other STEM careers videos, followed by a number of... (View More)

Keywords: Careers
Audience: Middle school, High school, Informal education
Materials Cost: Free

This collection of math problems is based on a weekly series of space and Earth science problems distributed to teachers during the 2013-2014 school year. The problems were intended for students looking for additional challenges in the math and... (View More)

Become a crime scene investigator! Learners model Dawn Mission scientists, engineers, and technologists and how they use instrumentation to detect distant worlds. After a briefing to build context, students explore interactions between different... (View More)

This series of laboratory lessons and activities uses authentic solar imagery and data to introduce students to solar science. Students are asked to explore details in imagery, including how to deal with the issues of noise and resolution, and... (View More)

Keywords: Solar activity; Spectra
Audience: High school
Materials Cost: Free

Emphasizing the synergies between science and engineering, these video clips highlight the research of professional ocean scientists and engineers in various disciplines. The clips are accompanied by additional relevant content including images,... (View More)

This set of three videos illustrates how math is used in satellite data analysis. NASA climate scientist Claire Parkinson explains how the Arctic and Antarctic sea ice covers are measured from satellite data and how math is used to determine trends... (View More)

Students combine science and systems engineering to develop a mission to search for life in our solar system. The mission must meet budgetary, mass and power constraints while still producing significant science. An extensive set of "equipment... (View More)

In this game, students use the accompanying "playing cards" to plan a mission to Mars. The mission must produce significant science returns while also meeting several constraints such as budget, mass and power. The lesson is part of the Mars... (View More)

This ChemMatters article provides a history of the study of ozone, a description of an experimental simulation called "The World Avoided," a brief introduction to the chemistry of ozone, an explanation of how ozone is measured, and the difference... (View More)

Audience: High school
Materials Cost: Free

This two-sided poster presents images and information about ozone. The front features a series of color Earth images; each image reflects total ozone readings taken every October from 1979 to 2012. The poster back contains information about ozone... (View More)

Using three images from the Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) mission, students measure and analyze infrared light from objects to identify Brown Dwarfs and Ultra-Luminous Infrared Galaxies (ULIRGs). The lesson includes a teacher’s guide,... (View More)

Audience: High school
Materials Cost: Free

Air traffic (and therefore airplane contrails) was halted nationwide for nearly three days following September 11, 2001. Students will investigate whether that stoppage resulted in any changes to cloud cover, temperature and/or radiation. Using the... (View More)

This activity examines the relationship between carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere and chlorophyll-a measurements in a watershed. Students analyze and compare two Excel plots-one showing carbon dioxide data values from the Keeling Curve and the... (View More)

Audience: High school
Materials Cost: Free

This is a lithograph set about the solar system. It contains images of the planets, the sun, asteroids, comets, meteors and meteorites, the Kuiper Belt and Oort Cloud, and moons of the solar system. General information, significant dates,... (View More)

Audience: High school

This ChemMatters article provides a brief background on smog, then examines the causes of it, efforts to reduce it, and methods used to measure it. ChemMatters is an educational magazine for high school students.

Audience: High school
Materials Cost: Free

Using the 5E instructional model, students discover the value of using color maps to visualize data. The activity requires students to create a color map of the ozone hole from Dobson data values derived from the Aura satellite. Students then... (View More)

This paper model shows the orbit of Comet ISON (late 2013) with respect to the innermost planets of the solar system. After reading background information about comets - how they form and where they come from - students cut out and tape together the... (View More)

This poster features NASA's Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) mission. The front features an image of the GPM Core Observatory satellite along with the constellation of satellites that will accompany it. Background information is provided on... (View More)

This short video (~2 minutes) explains how a raindrop falls through the atmosphere and why a more accurate look at raindrops can improve estimates of global precipitation. This information is important to scientists working on the Global... (View More)

Dieter Hartmann, a high-energy physicist, presents a story-based lesson on the science of Gamma-Ray astronomy. The lesson focuses on gamma-ray bursts; examining their sources, types, and links to the origin and evolution of the Universe. The... (View More)

Audience: High school
Materials Cost: Free

This collection of activities is based on a weekly series of space science mathematics problems distributed during the 2012-2013 school year. They were intended for students looking for additional challenges in the math and physical science... (View More)

The Cosmic Times Gallery Walk and Cosmic Times Jigsaw lessons serve as extensions to the Cosmic Times suite of curriculum support materials. They are intended to provide an introduction to Cosmic Times as a whole, giving students the larger picture... (View More)

Keywords: Cosmology
Audience: Middle school, High school, Higher education
Materials Cost: Free

Through the use of the 5E instructional model, students discover the value of using color maps to visualize data. The activity requires students to create a color map of the ozone hole from Dobson data values derived from the Aura satellite.... (View More)

This is an activity about the way distance, albedo, and atmosphere affect the temperature of a planet. Learners will create a planet using a computer game and change features of the planet to increase or decrease the planet's temperature. They will... (View More)

In this lesson students investigate the effects of black carbon on arctic warming and are introduced to a mechanism of arctic warming that is not directly dependent on greenhouse gases in the atmosphere: black carbon deposition on Arctic snow and... (View More)

This worksheet introduces students to the Aura satellite and its Ozone Monitoring Instrument (OMI). Students are asked to visit the Aura website and examine OMI data visualizations to learn about emissions of atmospheric gases such as sulfur... (View More)

Keywords: Air pollution
Audience: High school
Materials Cost: Free

This activity is a short engineering design challenge to be completed by individual students or small teams. A real-world problem is presented, designing buildings for hurricane-prone areas, but in a simulated way that works in a classroom, after... (View More)

This activity allows participants to build a paper model of the GPM Core Observatory and learn about the technology the satellite uses to measure precipitation from space. Directions explain how to cut, fold and glue the individual pieces together... (View More)

In this problem set, students learn about rainfall rates and how to convert them into the volume of water that falls.

Audience: High school
Materials Cost: Free
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