NASA Education Express — July 21, 2011

Check out the following NASA opportunities for the education community. Full descriptions are listed below.

Because It Flew — Education Activities and Space Shuttle Art Competition
Audience: 4-12 Educators and Students
Contest Deadline: Aug. 5, 2011

Electronic Professional Development Network Courses
Audience: K-12 Educators
Don’t Just Show Me the Numbers; Make Sense of the Information: Sept. 14 – Oct. 18, 2011
Project-Based Inquiry Learning: Sept. 28 – Nov. 1, 2011
Using Robotics to Enhance STEM Learning: Aug. 31 – Oct. 11, 2011
Technology Integration – Podcasts in the Classroom: Oct. 5 – Nov. 8, 2011
Technology Integration — 3-D Visualization: Oct. 12 – Nov. 15, 2011
Technology Integration — Turn Your Classroom Digital: Nov. 2 – Dec. 13, 2011


________________________________________________________________

Because It Flew — Education Activities and Space Shuttle Art Competition

“Because It Flew” is a free educational program that introduces students in grades 4-12 (ages 9-17) to the impact of the Space Shuttle Program on our planet and people. This engaging and informative project commemorates the 30-year history of the shuttle program.

“Because It Flew” consists of two elements: optional educational activities and the NASA Space Shuttle Art Competition.

Four activities engage and introduce students to the history of NASA’s space shuttle missions. Completion of these activities is not a requirement for submitting an entry into the art competition, but they may be used to guide students through the process of creating an entry. The activities can be adapted easily to both formal and informal educational settings. Activities are aligned with national standards and support efforts to integrate science, technology, engineering and math with language arts.

The NASA Space Shuttle Art Competitions invites students to create original artwork that symbolizes the impact of NASA’s Space Shuttle Program on our planet and people. Students must also write a 250-word essay explaining their artistic entries. An expert panel of artists will review submissions. The top six entries in two age brackets (9-13 and 14-17) will receive cash prizes, a private tutoring session with an accomplished USA Today graphic artist and a certificate of accomplishment. Entries in the competition are due Aug. 5, 2011.

“Because It Flew” is a joint education initiative of NASA, the National Institute of Aerospace and USA TODAY Education.

For more information, visit www.usatodayeducate.com/becauseitflew.

If you have any questions about this contest, please contact Jan Brown at janbrown@usatoday.com.

________________________________________________________________

Electronic Professional Development Network Courses


NASA’s Learning Environments and Research Network and the Georgia Institute of Technology have teamed up to create the Electronic Professional Development Network, or e-PDN, an initiative dedicated to preparing K-12 teachers to engage their students in science, technology, engineering and mathematics, or STEM through the use of NASA-developed learning materials and resources.

If you are looking for a way to enhance your instructional skills, meet your professional development goals, or find new and exciting resources to use in your learning environments, apply to one of our free courses today!

Applications are now open for the following courses starting in September:

Don’t Just Show Me the Numbers; Make Sense of the Information
Sept. 14 – Oct. 18, 2011
Strengthen your understanding of the statistics content included in the Common Core Standards, while deepening your understanding of data analysis, sampling and inference. Participants will use the four-step investigative approach for problem solving using statistics. Learn to use online interactive applications, NASA data sets and electronic collaborative tools for data collection.

Project-Based Inquiry Learning: Science Teaching and Learning for the 21st Century
Sept. 28 – Nov. 1, 2011
Develop your skills in designing and using project-based inquiry learning, or PBIL, to enhance conceptual understanding, critical thinking, scientific reasoning and problem solving in standards-based classrooms. Experience and analyze two NASA-oriented PBIL projects firsthand; learn PBIL curriculum design strategies and methods; and design a PBIL unit for use in your classroom. Use e-PDN’s suite of online tools to collaborate, connect and create with other course participants.

Using Robotics to Enhance STEM Learning
Aug. 31 – Oct. 11, 2011
Learn how to build and program LEGO Mindstorm robots and use them to promote student engagement and conceptual understanding of mathematics, science and engineering. Explore robotic manipulators and end effectors like NASA uses on the International Space Station, and integrate multiple sensors into your robot to allow for systematic control. Join your colleagues in the Grand Challenge to design, build and program a robot to explore an environment and return with a sample for investigation.

Technology Integration – Podcasts in the Classroom
Oct. 5 – Nov. 8, 2011
For instructors interested in teaching online, the Technology Integration Certificate series introduces you to best practices of online learning. Examine how podcasts can be integrated into the STEM classroom. In this course the benefits as well as obstacles to podcasts will be discussed and you will be introduced to the tools and techniques of creating podcasts.

Technology Integration — 3-D Visualization

Oct. 12 – Nov. 15, 2011
For instructors interested in teaching online, the Technology Integration Certificate series introduces you to best practices of online learning and helps get you started on designing your own online course. Learn how to create models of complex objects and bring visual creations to your students to teach them how mathematics, science and communication skills are vital in bringing ideas from imagination to reality.

Technology Integration — Turn Your Classroom Digital
Nov. 2 – Dec. 13, 2011
For instructors interested in teaching online, the Technology Integration Certificate series introduces you to best practices of online learning. Learn how to create your own online course from start to finish. Participants will get an overview of online teaching models, learning management systems, instructional design models, Web 2.0 collaborative tools and online assessments.


To learn more about these free courses and to apply online, visit http://nasaepdn.gatech.edu/nasa_certificates.php.

For more information on the e-PDN and the resources it offers to K-12 teachers, visit www.nasaepdn.gatech.edu.

Questions about these courses should be directed to Fran Sponsler at fran.sponsler@dlpe.gatech.edu.

________________________________________________________________

Don’t miss out on education-related opportunities available from NASA. For a full list of Current Opportunities, visit https://www.nasa.gov/audience/foreducators/current-opps-index.html.

Visit NASA Education on the Web:
For Educators: https://www.nasa.gov/audience/foreducators/index.html
For Students: https://www.nasa.gov/audience/forstudents/index.html
NASA Kids’ Club: https://www.nasa.gov/kidsclub