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This Science On a Sphere (SOS) module is designed to help the public better understand the story of water on Mars and how we're learning more about it. It portrays the mystery of what happened to the water on Mars in the context of a detective... (View More) story. NASA's MAVEN mission (Mars Atmosphere and Volatile EvolutoN) will help solve this mystery by studying the Martian atmosphere, how it has changed over time, and how it interacts with the Sun and the solar wind. The module also delves into Mars exploration, featuring past, present, and future Mars missions, and includes an activity comparing images of water-related features on Earth and Mars. It will help people understand that a planet's climate can change over time and how learning more about Mars helps us learn more about Earth and other planets as well. Resources included are: script, SOS playlist and datasets, background and tips for the docent or facilitator, and image comparisons of water-related features on Earth and Mars. (View Less)
This is a lesson about generating hypotheses and testable questions. Learners will use critical thinking and a collaborative approach to pose questions related to the study of Mars and evaluate the quality of their questions. They will explore... (View More) remote-sensing data collected by a camera orbiting Mars - the Thermal Emission Imaging System (THEMIS) and develop a team science question. Students will practice critical thinking skills, use a collaborative approach to this first critical step of the scientific process. Exploring the images of the surface of Mars in Visible (VIS) images, students will come up with a topic of study, their team science question and hypotheses. The lesson models scientific inquiry using the 5E instructional model and includes teacher notes and vocabulary. (View Less)
This is a lesson about the distribution of dust in the solar system. Learners will use data from the Student Dust Counter (SDC) Data Viewer to establish any trends in the distribution of dust. Students record the number of dust particles, or hits,... (View More) recorded by the instrument and the average mass of the particles in a given region. (View Less)
This is an activity about the future of Mars exploration. Learners will debate a specified position by researching and providing evidence to support their position. This is lesson 4 of 5 in Buried Water Ice on Mars.
This is a lesson about finding meteorites. Learners will use water balloons to demonstrate meteorite impacts, use geography to assess various terrains for meteorite recovery, attempt to recover simulated meteorite fragments, make experimental... (View More) predictions, graph the results, and draw conclusions. This is lesson 3 of 19 in Exploring Meteorite Mysteries. (View Less)