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How to Use this Guide

This Teacher's Guide follows the format developed for Live from Antarctica. We've kept those aspects which we know--from your feedback--seem to work well. We've added new features to make your task easier--such as the icons which indicate activities that relate to Math or Language Arts as well as Science. Some of the teachers on our Materials Development Team felt that astronomy might be more difficult and daunting than the South Pole and penguins. Accordingly, we've provided more Student Activity sheets, many with explanatory graphics, which you can copy and hand out to your students. Generally, teacher pages will be found directly opposite the corresponding student pages.

The Mission Logbook

Certain pages (Activities 2E and F, pages 41 and 42 of this Guide, and the 8 pages found on the rear of the Poster: 3A, B and C, and 4A through E ) are designed as copy masters from which you can prepare a "Mission Logbook" for your students. A "Mission Logbook" cover is available on the back of the Student Evaluation form. Each activity directly relates to the real-time observations being done aboard the Kuiper, whether planning the flight-path, or looking at Jupiter, Saturn, stars and galaxies. We hope students will personalize these logs, and follow along, noting aircraft statistics such as longitude and latitude, altitude, speed, the time when each observation begins and ends, and key astronomical data. We hope this will engage students viewing the videos live, or on tape in school or at science centers and planetariums. The flight data can be the basis for Math or Social Studies activities. The astronomical data and interpretations can be used to assess student learning of scientific concepts. And the completed Logbooks can provide you, the Teacher, with written materials from which to evaluate the field trip.

Most of all, we hope that working with the Logbook will increase student's sense of literally looking over the shoulders of interesting people engaged in cutting-edge research on a scientific frontier. Let us know how it works.

Writing across the Disciplines

Throughout this Guide, you'll find sidebars containing examples of many different kinds of writing. There are classic poems by Walt Whitman and Gerard Manley Hopkins, some poetically expressed science writing from Carl Sagan, a wonderfully appropriate contemporary work by English astronomer Michael Rowan-Robinson, Jewels by Myra Cohn Livingston, and a KAO crew member's parody of a well-known nautical poem. There are excerpts from the Safety Video shown to everyone who flies on the KAO, with some unique twists on the usual airline briefing. There are examples of Field Journals written by members of the KAO research team, and some Researcher Question and Answer pairs from a previous on-line project: Do they enjoy their work? Why use the Kuiper not the Shuttle? How much do pilots get paid? Where's the bathroom? Who or what was "Kuiper" and how is it pronounced? We hope you'll find some of these worth sharing with your students, emphasizing that astronomy engages the imagination as well as the intellect, and that doing science involves communicating to others, along with collecting hard data and crunching numbers. Above all, we hope the multiplicity of voices will emphasize the human dimension of the project, and motivate your students.

The Mini-kit

Co-packaged with the LFS Teacher's Guide come several existing publications, and materials designed to support hands-on activities.

NASA's Space Based Astronomy provides background relevant to the Kuiper and Hubble field trips, an excellent Glossary, and a listing of other NASA resources and how to order them. Several hands-on activities in this booklet are cited by page in the LFS Guide, where their subject matter is directly relevant to Live From the Stratosphere, and there seemed no need to duplicate or modify.

  • NASA Ames Fact Sheet: Kuiper Airborne Observatory provides factual background on the aircraft and infrared astronomy. Copies might be used in class, or distributed to students to become part of their Mission Logbooks.
  • Hubble Space Telescope: New and Improved from the Space Telescope Science Institute's Starcatcher series helps introduce Live from the Space Telescope (see p. 58-60 for details about this unique opportunity for original student research.) It also provides color imagery of Jupiter, planetary nebulae and galaxies.
  • The Live From the Stratosphere Poster shows the KAO, and some of the objects it has studied. Original graphics, real astronomical images--some from IRAS, the InfraRed Astronomical Satellite--and visualizations of KAO spectroscopic and occultation data, provide visual examples which you can refer to as you introduce several of the in-class activities. The electromagnetic spectrum across the bottom relates wavelength to everyday life, and the vertical panel to the right sets the KAO in the context of astronomy done from the ground, in the atmosphere, the stratosphere and up in space. (Again, please note several pages for the Mission Logbook have been printed on the rear of the poster to maintain the visual quality of the photographs and diagrams.)

Since we are committed to making each Passport to Knowledge project as easy to adopt as possible, we've also included several items needed for various activities: a few sheets of heat-sensitive paper, samples of "rainbow glasses" which break light up into kaleidoscopic spectra, a diffraction grating, and a bumper sticker to proclaim your involvement in Passport to Knowledge! You can find out how to order larger quantities in the Resources section, page XX.

Sufficient structure for success. Flexibility enough for you to adapt

The Passport to Knowledge project recognizes that every school and teacher is unique. We've tried to provide enough information to make Live From the Stratosphere successful for you and your students whether you are merely watching the videos and using this printed Guide, or also going on-line with simple e-mail or full Internet access. There's no "one right way" to use the project. We encourage you to pick and choose those aspects which work best for you and your students, adding parts of your regular curriculum which can be enlivened by this electronic field trip aboard the Kuiper.

Customize Your "Electronic Field Trip"

You and your students can participate in Live From the Stratosphere in various ways, depending on the amount of time and resources you can budget. This "Travel Guide" may help you select from the options available.

Economy Trip (least time cost)

  • opening activity (from section 1) and view segments of Science in the Stratosphere video
  • Pre-Flight Briefing activities (section 2.)
  • View the 2 1/2 hour daytime flight, The Jupiter Mission, live or on tape, and do two activities (section 3)
  • View Return to the Stratosphere and do a wrap-up activity (section 4)

First Class Travel (more time)

  • opening activities (from section 1) and view segments of Science in the Stratosphere video
  • Pre-Flight Briefing activities (section 2)
  • View the 2 1/2 hour daytime flight, The Jupiter Mission, live or on tape, activities (section 3)
  • Stage an evening event in conjunction with Night Flight to the Stars involving parents and students (and local astronomers) with multiple activity stations set up for people to move through: have the video running throughout: but check local broadcast and cable listings to be sure you have access to the programming!
  • View Return to the Stratosphere and do two wrap-up activities (section 4)

Travel Deluxe!

Customize your electronic field trip by reading through each of the Teacher Guide sections: select, mix and match to create the perfect travel arrangements for you and your students.

On-line: a Unique Opportunity

However, we'd not serve you well if we did not emphasize that the on-line resources referred to throughout this Guide and demonstrated during the videos are extremely important. Passport to Knowledge is designed as a thoroughly integrated multimedia experience in which the Video, Print and On-line components are of equal value delivering different and complimentary experiences. The on-line materials permit a degree of interactivity with the field research team impossible through any other medium. The on-line collaborations, such as the star census, provide a model for communication with peers across space and time which is an introduction to the world of work your students will inhabit.

Passport to Knowledge

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Hands-On, Languge Arts,.. Math,.. . On-line, ... Social Studies , Technical Education, Video

 
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