Association of Future Science Educators
February 10, 2003  find out about future events

NASA Educational Materials for Teaching Math & Science

Art Hammon and Dave Seidel from Jet Propulsion Lab in Pasadena, a NASA center, joined 83 of us for an informative and enjoyable evening. They shared information about NASA educational materials, provided everyone with posters, teaching resources and the tools to find teacher materials on-line. In addition, we were able to try out some of the activities ourselves!

 Scale & Size -- Trying to get students to understand the sizes and distances involved in the solar system is quite difficult. One activity uses pieces of rice to help students get an idea of the distances between Earth and our moon. Dave and Art described several different ways to help students see and experience the scope of the sizes and distances involved.

 Newton Cars:  (From the Rockets module)  F = ma . . . . for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction . . . . objects at rest remain at rest unless acted on by on outside force . . .  The Newton Cars helped us see force and motion first hand. Students have many variables to explore with this module. What happens if we use different rubber bands? What is the effect of changing the mass of the film cannister? What happens if we change the size of the string loop?

In addition to doing activites we learned where to find educational materials. Teachers (and teachers-to-be) can get educational materials from any NASA Educational Resource Center (ERC). The nearest ERC for us is in Pomona at 1460 East Holt Blvd., Suite 20, Pomona.  (909)397-4420

Materials can also be found on-line. Virtually all materials are available on the web.  Great one-stop shopping is Spacelinks (http://spacelink.nasa.gov) From here you can order or down load modules, lithographs, posters and videos.

JPL has put together a "quilt" of educational materials. This site is advertised as a 3-click site. It will only take you 3 clicks to go from grade level to content standard to educational product. The quilt is based on the National Science Education Standards, not California's, so some minor adjusting for grade level will be needed. You can find the quilt at <http://quilt.jpl.nasa.gov>. THIS IS A REALLY GREAT RESOURCE, BE SURE TO EXPLORE IT!!

Thank you to David and Art for a great evening!

Art is holding the Planet Quest module which he gave each of us.
David is holding raffle tickets which he used to teach us about scale and size.