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Science Education and Outreach: Forging a Path to the Future
 

Science Showcase Workshops and Events at the Annual Meeting of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific

September 12-13, 2009

The intersection in 2009 of the Year of Science, the International Year of Astronomy, and the 120th anniversary meeting of the ASP provides a singular opportunity to showcase science and to provide professional development opportunities for those working on the front lines of science education and outreach. As part of the ASP's annual meeting, we are pleased to offer a series of workshops and events for teachers, informal educators, and amateur astronomers engaged in public outreach on the weekend prior to the start of the meeting.

Formal Educator Workshops (Sat/Sun)
Astronomy 101 Workshop
Informal Educator Workshops (Sat/Sun)
Amateur Astronomer Workshops/Events (Sat/Sun)
SETI Institute Speaker Series (Sun)
Schedule Overview

How To Register

Online pre-registration for Astronomical Society of the Pacific Annual Meeting is closed. Those wishing to attend the conference proper on Sep. 13-16 can register on-site at the Westin SFO, the conference hotel, at the ASP conference registration table. Those wishing to register for the Saturday, Sep. 12 AANC meeting can register on-site at the AANC registration table. Those wishing to register for the Sep 12-13 weekend workshops can register on-site at the ASP registration table as long as workshop slots remain.

Formal Educator Workshops

Bring the Year of Science into your classroom: participate in a two-day weekend professional development event led by science education teams from NASA- and NSF-funded education and public outreach (EPO) programs, the Astronomical Society of the Pacific (ASP), and other education professionals.

Dates: Saturday and Sunday, September 12-13, 2009.
Place: Westin SFO Hotel, Millbrae, California.
Workshop Fee: $39.95/day.
Total hours: 7 1/2 hours for one day, 15 hours for two days. Participants may attend one day (either day) or both.
Meals on your own.

Academic Credit Available

One 15-hour unit of academic credit is available to workshop participants through San Francisco State University (SFSU) for those teachers desiring it. While teachers may attend one day of workshops and either day, attendance for both days is necessary to meet the requirements for receiving the unit of credit.

The requirements for obtaining the unit of credit are as follows:

1) Attendance at Saturday workshops (7.5 hours).

2) Attendance at Sunday morning workshops plus the afternoon SETI Speaker Series (7.5 hours).

3) Writing a short paper regarding implementation of workshop content and methodologies into the classroom, due October 1 at the ASP education office.

4) Filling out the San Francisco State University course registration form and providing the $100 credit fee to SFSU—on site at the workshops in September. (Note that this fee is an SFSU course credit fee, and is separate from the workshop fee.)

General Information

While the content and activities presented in the workshops are primarily targeted for formal educators teaching grades 4-12, with different content areas covering different grade ranges according to national and local science standards, anyone interested in education is welcome to register and attend for his/her enrichment.

Participants will have several strands from which to choose to match their needs and interests. Each strand will include current content, hands-on activities and approaches to teaching science that can help teachers to meet their curriculum and science standards goals. The workshops will also provide a variety of take-home materials.

Saturday (Choose a Strand)

Strand One: In the Footsteps of Galileo: Training Program for Teachers in Grades 3 - 12 (Sat. & Half of Sun.)

Instructors:

Andrew Fraknoi (Foothill College & ASP), Moderator
Dennis Schatz (Pacific Science Center and winner of the 2009 Faraday Award of the National      Association of Science Teachers)
Dr. Constance Walker (NOAO and Coordinator of the Globe at Night Project)
Robert Sparks (NOAO)

Description:

In this workshop, we will train the first group of U.S. Galileo Ambassadors for the International Year of Astronomy (2009). Teachers in grades 4 - 12 will learn how to do age-appropriate, hands-on, inquiry-based activities in astronomy and physical science. After a brief introduction to Galileo’s life and work and the realms of astronomy, participants will explore:

1. A Private Universe: Student Reasoning and Helping Students to Act Like Scientists
2. The Moons of Jupiter activity and the Process of Science
3. The Phases and Motions of the Moon
4. Making a Constellation Finder and Getting Oriented in the Night Sky
5. Measuring the Dark: Activities to Understand Light Pollution
6. The Galileoscope: A Telescope for All Seasons and All Reasons
7. The Universe at Your Fingertips: Where to Find the Best Astronomy Activities in Print and on the Web


Participants will receive a free GalileoScope (a small telescope especially developed for easy public viewing during the International Year of Astronomy) and package of activities and resource guides that can be put to immediate use in the classroom. No background in astronomy will be assumed, although both new and veteran teachers should gain new information and techniques from the workshop.

Time: 8-11:45 am, and 1:15-5 pm, with an hour and a half break for lunch on your own.

Strand Two: Of the Moon, On the Moon, From the Moon

Instructors:

Doris Daou, Director for Education and Public Outreach, NASA Lunar Science Institute, NASA Ames      Research Center
Dr. Stephanie Shipp, NLSI Team EPO Lead, Lunar and Planetary Institute
Christine Shupla, Lunar and Planetary Institute Jaclyn Allen, NLSI Team EPO Co-Lead, NASA      Johnson Space Center, Astromaterials Research Exploration Science
Dr. Emily CoBabe-Ammann, NLSI Team EPO Lead, Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics,      University of Colorado
Dr. Douglas Duncan, NLSI Team EPO Lead, Department of Astrophysical and Planetary Sciences,      University of Colorado
Dr. Laura Peticolas, Center for Science Education, Space Sciences Laboratory, University of      California at Berkeley
Brian Day, E/PO Lead, Lunar Crater Observation and Sensing Satellite Mission, NASA Ames      Research Center
Lora Bleacher, NLSI Team EPO Lead, Science Systems And Applications Inc.

Description:

The past few years have witnessed a renewed focus on lunar science and exploration; today's students will be the generation that lives and works on the Moon! As a result, the Education and Public Outreach community has a plethora of new educational resources related to the science and technologies of lunar exploration – and new ways for students and teachers to become involved. The NASA Lunar Science Institute was created by NASA to supplement and extend existing NASA lunar programs. Its science topics are related to science "of the Moon," "on the Moon," and "from the Moon." In this hands-on workshop, participants will explore cutting edge science results about how our Moon formed and has changed through time, how scientists study the Moon, the challenges facing a human presence on the Moon, and present and future lunar missions. NASA educators and scientists will share new lunar products, resources, and opportunities for teaching and learning about these topics. All activities are connected to key concepts in the national and California science education standards for the 6th, 7th and 8th grades. Participants will receive lesson plans and other resources, and have access to all PowerPoint presentations. Join us to explore the Moon!

Time: 8-11:45 am, and 1:15-5 pm, with an hour and a half break for lunch on your own.

Strand Three: Earth and Sun: Exploring Dynamic Systems

Instructors:

Patrick McQuillan, Incorporated Research Institutions for Seismology
Kevin Ward, NASA Earth Observatory, Science Systems And Applications Inc.
Dr. Laura Peticolas, Center for Science Education, Space Sciences Laboratory, University of      California at Berkeley
Lindsay Bartolone, Adler Planetarium and Astronomy Museum

Description:

NASA- and NSF-sponsored education teams will focus on geosciences, Earth, Sun, and Sun-Earth relationships in this hands-on workshop providing the latest results, educational activities and teaching strategies for presenting the Earth and its cosmic context in the classroom.

Time: 8-11:45 am, and 1:15-5 pm, with an hour and a half break for lunch on your own.

Sunday Morning (Choose a Strand)

Strand One: Galileo Teacher Training Program – continues from Saturday

Time: 8-11:30 am.

Strand Two: Discovering Our Place in the Universe

Instructors:

Mary Dussault, Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics
Lindsay Bartolone, Adler Planetarium & Astronomy Museum
Pamela Harman, SETI Institute
Alan Gould, Lawrence Hall of Science
Dr. Frank Summers, Space Telescope Science Institute
Dr. Denise Smith, Space Telescope Science Institute

Description:

Stars, planets, galaxies, and more! How do we know what makes up our universe? How can we help students investigate and discover the universe for themselves? Come join NASA educators and scientists in a hands-on workshop that will explore strategies for teaching and learning key concepts in national and California science education standards: models and evidence, conducting investigations, and Earth's place in the universe. Learn about some of the newest scientific explorations of the cosmos with NASA's Hubble Space Telescope, its planet-finding Kepler mission, the NASA/ESA Planck mission, and its future Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer and James Webb Space Telescope missions, while considering how these space-based telescopes extend the legacy of observation and discovery that Galileo Galilei and Johannes Kepler initiated in 1609. After participating in this workshop, participants will be able to identify examples of common student misconceptions about Earth's place in the solar system and universe, describe how knowledge of the electromagnetic spectrum and optics are essential to investigations of Earth's place in the universe, and summarize how their own mental model of the universe has changed. Participants will receive free NASA curriculum support materials and other resources.

Time: 8-11:30 am.

Strand Three: Life on Earth…and Elsewhere?

Instructors:

Dr. David Grinspoon, Denver Museum of Nature and Science and NASA Astrobiology Institute
Monica Brelsford, Montana State University and NASA Astrobiology Institute
Dr. Julie Edmonds, Carnegie Institution of Science and NASA Astrobiology Institute
Pamela Harman, SETI Institute and NASA Astrobiology Institute
Daniella Scalice, NASA Astrobiology Institute

Description:

Are we alone? How did life on Earth originate and evolve? How are we searching for life beyond Earth, and will we know it if we find it? Astrobiology is the study of the origins, evolution, distribution, and future of life in the universe. In this 3.5-hour workshop, NASA astrobiology educators will present an overview of astrobiology, examining life in extreme environments and potential habitats for life elsewhere in the solar system and beyond. Several hands-on, classroom-ready activities will also be demonstrated and distributed.

Time: 8-11:30 am.

Sunday Afternoon (SETI Speakers Series)

Single Strand: Expand your mind and your perspective with a concluding afternoon of engaging talks by scientists and researchers from the SETI Institute, from 1-5 pm. (See SETI SUNDAY section below for details.)

Astronomy 101 Workshop

Saturday

Interactive Lecturing – How to Increase Student Intellectual Engagement and Understanding During the Lecture Portion of Your Class

Instructors:

Edward E. Prather, Center for Astronomy Education (CAE), Steward Observatory, Department of      Astronomy, University of Arizona
Gina Brissenden, Center for Astronomy Education (CAE), Steward Observatory, Department of      Astronomy, University of Arizona

Description:

In this participation-based workshop, we will work collaboratively through instructional strategies proven to move students from an intellectually passive to an active role in the LECTURE portion of the classroom. Members of the Center for Astronomy Education (CAE) at the University of Arizona have been conducting rigorous classroom evaluation of research-validated curriculum designed to actively engage students learning during the traditional lecture portion of the classroom. Participants will be given first-hand experience with several different instructional strategies (appropriate for their classrooms) that represent a wide range of instructional investment. Active audience participation will be required—no, really, it will be fun, really!!

Dates: Saturday, September 12, 2009.
Place: Westin SFO Hotel, Millbrae, California.
Workshop Fee: $39.95/day.
Time: 8-11:45 am, and 1:15-5 pm, with an hour and a half break for lunch on your own.

Informal Educator Workshops

Pick up new tips and hone your skills for presenting science in informal settings in workshops designed for planetarians, museum and science/nature center educators, and other informal educators working in informal settings. The workshop will be led by ASP staffers, NASA- and NSF-sponsored professionals, and special guest presenters.

Dates: Saturday and Sunday, September 12-13, 2009.
Place: Westin SFO Hotel, Millbrae, California.
Workshop Fee: $39.95/day.
Meals on your own.

Saturday

Astronomy from the Ground Up - Down to Earth Activities for Museums and Nature Centers

Instructors:

Anna Hurst, Astronomical Society of the Pacific
Suzanne Gurton, Astronomical Society of the Pacific
Paul Nelson, Astronomical Society of the Pacific
Lindsay Bartolone, Adler Planetarium and Astronomy Museum
Dr. Constance Walker (NOAO and Coordinator of the Globe at Night Project)
Robert Sparks (NOAO)

Description:

Excited about offering astronomy programs, but don't know where to start? Already offering astronomy to your visitors, but want to go further? Looking for complementary activities to support your planetarium shows and observing sessions? The presenters will share their favorite well-tested hands-on activities and techniques for bringing the excitement of astronomy to the public in informal settings such as museums and nature centers, so that you can get your astronomy program off the ground or revitalize the programs you already offer. Participants will be invited to join a thriving online community of over 400 informal astronomy educators, for access to additional activities, learning opportunities, and continued networking. This workshop is appropriate for astronomy novices as well as veterans looking new ideas, and is specifically designed for educators from informal settings.

Time: 8-11:30 am, and 1:15 -5 pm, with an hour and a half break for lunch on your own.

Sunday Morning

Telling Science Like A Story

Instructors:

Jay O'Callahan, Master Storyteller
Anna Hurst, Astronomical Society of the Pacific
Suzanne Gurton, Astronomical Society of the Pacific

Description:

Join master storyteller, Jay O'Callahan to learn how to use the timeless art of storytelling to communicate science. Jay O'Callahan is one of the world's best-known storytellers. He has performed at Lincoln Center, at the Abbey Theatre in Dublin and other theatres around the world, at the Olympics, and with the Boston Symphony Orchestra. His work appears regularly on National Public Radio. He also is an amazing workshop facilitator, bringing sparks of inspiration out in all participants. Storytelling is a highly effective communication tool and one of the most economical types of programs to run. The workshop will cover basic storytelling techniques that can be incorporated into science lessons and programs. This is a continuation of the Astronomy from the Ground up workshop on Saturday but is appropriate for both informal science educators and classroom teachers.

Sunday Afternoon (SETI Speakers Series)

Expand your mind and your perspective with a concluding afternoon of engaging talks by scientists and researchers from the SETI Institute, from 1-5 pm. (See SETI SUNDAY section below for details.)

Amateur Astronomer Workshops/Events

Join other amateur astronomers for a day-long meeting of the Astronomical Association of Northern California to learn and share new information and techniques, and enhance your public outreach skills in a special Sunday morning workshop with and afternoon of speakers from the SETI Institute to stretch your mind.

Dates: Saturday and Sunday, September 12-13, 2009.
Place: Westin SFO Hotel, Millbrae, California.
Fee: $39.95/day.
Meals on your own.

Saturday

Astronomical Association of Northern California (AANC) Meeting

Description:

Join fellow amateur astronomers for a full day of astronomy lectures, demonstrations and activities, followed by nighttime stargazing through an impressive array of telescopes.
Daytime activities include sun-viewing through safe solar telescopes, and opportunities to meet and speak with representatives from local astronomy clubs and dealers. There will also be an astronomy raffle offering cool prizes.

For more information on the AANC meeting, including a detailed schedule of events, visit http://aancstars2009.org/schedule.shtml. (Note that there is a separate registration form for registering for this meeting, but the registration fee is the same as the day rate for workshops.)

Time: 9:30-5 pm, with lunch on your own. (Note that there is a brown-bag lunch workshop at 12:15 pm.) The evening star party runs from 6:30 to 9:15 pm.

Sunday Morning

Two-part Amateur Workshop:

Part 1: Moon Outreach for Amateurs

Instructor:

Brian Day, E/PO Lead, Lunar Crater Observation and Sensing Satellite Mission, NASA Ames      Research Center

Description:

The Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO), containing the Lunar Crater Observing and Sensing Satellite (LCROSS) is scheduled for launch this summer and will send an impactor to the lunar surface this fall to confirm the presence or absence of water in a permanently shadowed crater at the Moon's South Pole. Presenters will provide resources and demonstrations to help amateur astronomers make the most of the mission for visitors to their public events.

Part 2: How to Get "Wow!" When You're Not Showing Saturn

Instructors:

Marni Berensen, Astronomical Society of the Pacific
Zoë Ames, Astronomical Society of the Pacific

Description:

Amateur astronomers and other informal educators often express concerns: What if someone asks me a question I can't answer? How do I handle questions about UFOs and astrology? I don't know how to talk to kids! This workshop provides easy solutions and tips to allow people to face these situations with confidence, leaving their visitors excited and eager to find out more. Role-playing, tip sheets, and online videos will give you the resources you need.

Time: 8-11:30 am (Parts 1 and 2).

Sunday Afternoon (SETI Speakers Series)

Expand your mind and your perspective with a concluding afternoon of engaging talks by scientists and researchers from the SETI Institute, from 1-5 pm. (See SETI SUNDAY section below for details.)

SETI SUNDAY: A SETI Institute Speakers Series

Expand your mind and your perspective with an afternoon of thought-provoking talks by scientists and researchers from the SETI Institute, from 1-5 pm. The event will be MC-ed by Mr. Tom Pierson, CEO of the SETI Institute.

1 pm: Finding a Home for ET: The Kepler Mission
Dr. Douglas Caldwell, Instrument Scientist, Kepler Mission
Kepler is the first NASA mission that is capable of finding Earth-size planets in the habitable zone of Sun-like stars. Caldwell will share his personal and scientific thoughts on the Kepler Mission and share some of the exciting initial data that has arrived.

1:55 pm: The Real ET
Dr. Seth Shostak, Senior Astronomer, SETI Institute
New technologies may confirm the existence of intelligence elsewhere within two decades. In case of contact, one of the first things we'll want to know is: what are the aliens like? Dr. Shostak will discuss why even speculating about the construction and lifestyle of extraterrestrials -- long before we've found them -- could be important in shaping a productive SETI strategy.

2:50 pm: Break

3 pm: Discovering ET: What's Next?
Dr. Margaret Race, Principal Investigator, Carl Sagan Center for the Study of Life in the Universe
ET may be found through interception of signals from alien civilizations, or discovered under a microscope examining Martian soil. In either case, what are the scientific and ethical outcomes of discovering alien life? Race will discuss her work in planetary protection, societal issues and ethics when dealing with ET.

3:55 pm: Reflections on the Drake Equation
Dr. Frank Drake, Director of the Carl Sagan Center for the Study of Life in the Universe
Dr. Drake, who wrote the Drake Equation 50 years ago to calculate the potential for inhabitable planets with possibly intelligent communicative species, will share his thoughts on the equation: what have we discovered, and what mysteries remain to explore?

Note: ASP Conference registrants, SETI Members, ASP members, Sunday workshop attendees, and AANC meeting attendees (with registration badges) are admitted to the talks at no additional charge.

Schedule Overview

Aspen
Hawthorne/
Hickory
Oak Laurel Poplar
Maple/
Elm/
Sycamore

Sequoia Ballroom

Sat, 9/12
8-11:45 am
AANC
(Amateur)
Astro 101
Workshop
Astronomy from the Ground Up (Informal)
GTTP
(Formal)
Earth/Sun
(Formal)
Our Moon
(Formal)
x
Break
x
x x
x
x
x
x
Sat, 9/12
1:15-5 pm
AANC
(Amateur)
Astro 101
Workshop
xAstronomy from the Ground Up (Informal)
GTTP
(Formal)
Earth/Sun
(Formal)
Our Moon
(Formal)
x
x
x x x
x
x
x
x
Sun, 9/13
8-11:30 am
Moon Outreach + Getting a "Wow!"
(Amateur)
x
Telling Science Like a Story
(Informal)
GTTP
(Formal)
Life Here &
Elsewhere
(Formal)
Our Place in the Universe
(Formal)
x
Break
x x x
x
x
x
x
Sun, 9/13
1-5 pm
x x x
x
x
x
SETI Speakers Series

 

 
 

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