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The Antarctic Team Answers your Questions

Current Questions and Answers

To see the current list of questions and answers, click here.


Browsing Answers to Questions Already Asked

An archive of question/answer pairs of previously asked questions will be maintained and categorized for easy reference throughout the duration of the project. Look here for the link to come soon!


Asking The Antarctic Team Your Questions

The opportunity to send email questions to the men and women of the Antarctic Team is available now until March 31, 1997.

We are grateful to the Antarctica folks for generously volunteering their time to support this service.

The sections below will describe some guidelines and procedures for the process.

K-12 students and teachers can email questions to researchers, scientists, and support staff. This interaction will be supported by a "Smart Filter" which protects the professional from Internet overload by acting as a buffer. The actual email addresses of these experts will remain unlisted. Also, repetitive questions will be answered from an accumulating database of replies; thus the valued interaction with the experts will be saved for original questions. (More information about how you can directly search this database will follow later).


Tips For Asking Good Questions

Each and every expert is excited about connecting with classrooms. But it is important to remember that the time and energy of these researchers and scientists are extremely valuable. If possible, please review the materials available online to gain an overall understanding of the basics.It would be best to ask questions that are not easily answered elsewhere. For example, "What is an Adelie penguin?" would not be an appropriate question.

We recognize that this creates a gray area about whether or not a question is appropriate. Simply use your best judgment. Since the main idea is to excite students about the wonders of science and research, please err on the side of having the students participate. If you are not sure whether or not to send a question, send it.

Some teachers have used a group dynamic to refine the questions that they email to experts. For example, after first studying LFA 2 material, students divide into groups and create a few questions per group. All of the questions are then shared, and students are given an opportunity to find answers to their classmates' questions. Those that remain unanswered are sent to the LFA 2 team.

Ideally, the act of sending questions will further engage the student in their learning. It may help to think back to an early stage of development when the 3-year-old learns that repeating the word "why" can get parents to do most of the work in a conversation The wise parent will try to get child involvement by asking "Why do you want to know?" The same is true in the classroom. Teachers might want to help students to learn to ask good questions. Here are three questions the students might ask themselves as they submit their questions:

    What do I want to know?

    Is this information to be found in a resource I could easily check (such as a school encyclopedia)?

    Why do I want to know it? (What will I do with the information? or How will I use what I learn?)
The last question is the most interesting. Student reflection on why they want to know something is a very valuable learning experience.


Logistics Of Sending In Questions (Address And Format)

Questions will be accepted from now through the duration of the project, March 31, 1997. To submit a question, mail it to the following email address:

We will acknowledge and answer all questions as quickly as possible. Our goal is to provide a basic acknowledgment immediately. In most cases we should be able to provide an answer within one week to ten days.

In the subject field, please put the letters "QA:" before a descriptive subject. Also, provide a sentence of background information to help the experts understand the grade level of your students. The following example should illustrate this idea.


TO:             question-lfa@quest.arc.nasa.gov

FROM:           your email address

SUBJECT:        QA: Krill feeding on algae

Hello,

I am an 8th grader from West Salem, Wisconsin.. In the "Oceans, Life

and Ice" broadcast we learned about Robin Ross and her krill studies. 

What factors influence the algae population in and around Antarctica?
Thanks, Laura Johnson


One Question Per Message

If you or your class have several questions which are unrelated, we ask that you please send each unrelated question in a separate email message rather than as one message with many different questions. While this may be inconvenient, it is important because it will help us to keep track of the questions and ensure that no question remains unanswered. Messages that do not follow this request will be unnecessarily delayed as we go through the extra step of splitting up the messages ourselves.


Twenty Question Limit

Any individual teacher will be limited to submitting a total of twenty (20) questions every three months. Hopefully this will encourage more classroom discussion about what students want to know and will lead to research done before asking questions.

You can click here to review archived questions and answers from Live from Antarctica 1. Take a look at what was asked in the past to help you formulate questions for this round of Researcher Q & A!


Receiving All Question/Answer Pairs As They Get Created

A capability has been set up for those people that would like to receive ongoing email with answers to all of the questions asked. Each night, one mail message will be sent to those interested. This message will contain a copy of every question/answer pair generated that day. If you would like to receive these message, please send an email to In the message body, write these words:
    subscribe answers-lfa



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Last Update: 2/7/97
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