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Website: Smithsonian’s Astronomy for Kids

m81_featureEyes on the Sky, Feet on the Ground is a Website supported by the Smithsonian Institution’s Astrophysical Observatory that offers online astronomy activities for students in grades 2-6. Included are six online “chapters” that use astronomy as a classroom tool for learning how to theorize, experiment, and analyze data. The illustrated activities contain detailed, step-by-step instructions, as well as suggested discussion topics.

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Resource: The Universe from Smithsonian

Smithsonian - The Universe An IntroductionThe Universe: An Introduction from Smithsonian Education provides astronomy lesson plans, class activities, and a profile on astronomer Lisa Kaltenegger, who is in the burgeoning business of “planet hunting.” As part of the activities, an online interactive game is available.

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Resource: Naval Astronomical Information Center

Carina Nebula from HubbleThe Naval Oceanography Portal website maintains an Astronomical Information Center that contains a variety of informative resources. The directory features a glossary of terms, important definitions, fun facts, in-depth articles, data sets, lists, mathematical equations, and links to outside resources. Some topics include phenomena of the sun and moon, time, calendars and events, computing astronomical data, celestial navigation, and more.

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Website: Physlinks.com

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PhysLink.com is a “physics and astronomy online education, research, and reference website” that provides news, articles, glossaries, and extensive number of links, , as well as an “As the Experts” section, science jokes and games, and a list of physics departments in colleges and universities throughout the world.

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Event: Mars Day at the Smithsonian. July 16, Washington DC

mars_amazonisCome discover what all of the hype and interest lately has been about the planet Mars. Delve deep into the mysteries of our close neighbor with the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum’s popular, educational and interactive summer event, “Mars Day!” on Friday, July 16 from 10:00 am to 3:00 pm, on the National Mall in Washington, DC. No new info on a 2011 event.

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Web Conference: Smithsonian Problem-Solving. April 13-14; 28-29, 2010.

Smithsonian historians, scientists, and other researchers share their questions, methods, and findings in an interactive format, welcoming educators to contribute their own ideas. This multi-disciplinary two-part online conference will feature live presentations, moderated forums, and demonstrations of how Smithsonian specialists use critical thinking skills to solve problems in their areas of expertise. An online exhibit hall will allow participants everywhere to experience virtually the world of the Smithsonian and the wealth of its resources. April 13-14 (“World Cultures and the American Experience”) and 28-29 (“Biodiversity and Mysteries of the Universe”), 2010.

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Feature: Space Science Mentor

“Space Science Mentor,” an article from the March 2009 issue of Prism magazine, profiles a Kentucky professor who involves his undergraduates in satellite launches. Hands-on research is often seen as a good way to engage undergraduates in science and engineering. But at Morehead State University’s ambitious space science center, it’s no mere exercise. As the center joins in preparing suborbital vehicles and a satellite for launch, sophomores and even second-semester freshmen help design and build payloads and operate ground-to-space communications.

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Science Center: Science & Astronomy in Utah

The StarHouse Discovery Center in Logan, UT, aims to promote and provide hands-on science, astronomy, and technology experiences to children, parents, teachers, and administrators.

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