Education Activities to Continue

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By J.R. Sirkin

Officials of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration vowed last week to move forward with the educational activities associated with its teacher in space project, including a possible nationwide telecast to schools.

Robert W. Brown, the director of NASA’s educational-affairs division, said a broadcast to schools would occur “in the reasonably near future.”

He added, however, that the details of such a program “have not yet been worked out.”

The Public Broadcasting Service reported two weeks ago that NASA was planning a telecast to encourage use of the teacher guidebooks that it had prepared for the Challenger flight. The 16-page guides include short descriptions of the lessons that Sharon Christa McAuliffe was prepared to teach from space, as well as lessons designed to stimulate students’ higher order thinking skills.

Mr. Brown said that the agency may expand and modify the guidebooks—more than a million of which have already been distributed to schools—so that they can be used “in the absence of a flight.” He also said the existing guidebooks may be used in conjunction with future shuttle missions.

NASA reported that it had received “widespread support for the continuation of the program from teachers, students, the private sector and the general public.” It also reported that the 103 teacher-in-space semifinalists, the so-called “space ambassadors,” and the eight finalists have “rededicated” themselves to the role of motivating young people and promoting the educational goals of the program.

The agency also said it plans to “further develop partnerships in education” that it had initiated with major education associations.

Vol. 5, Issue 23, Page 20

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