Online Learning: Ask a Scientist at the Mars Base Camp Scientists Panel

Get a chance to ask questions to world renowned space scientists behind innovative Mars research and the scientists who created the Mars Base Camp Challenge. Register here! (All Ages) **Submission of questions is required in advance as part of the registration** 

Meet the Scientists for the Thursday, October 1st, 7-8 PM Panel!

Dr. Juliane Gross is an Associate Professor in the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences at Rutgers University. Her academic interests are focused on understanding the formation history and geochemical evolution of differentiated celestial bodies and early Solar System processes. Currently she is investigating the mineralogy, petrology, and geochemistry of extraterrestrial planetary samples using a variety of experimental and microanalytical techniques. Dr. Gross is also a NASA Early Career Fellow.

Dr. Shaunna Morrison is a Carnegie Research Scientist at the Carnegie Institution for Science’s Earth and Planets Laboratory, is co-director of the 4D Deep Time Data Driven Discovery Initiative and is a CheMin co-investigator on the NASA Mars Science Laboratory Mission. Her research centers around mineralogy, crystallography, planetary science, and data science applications therein. Her recent work has focused on characterizing Earth’s mineralogy through deep time and its correlation with geologic processes, its co-evolution with the biosphere, and its relationship to other planetary bodies, particularly Mars.

Dr. Lujendra Ojha is a NASA, Co-Investigator of the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) and Compact Reconnaissance Imaging Spectrometer for Mars (CRISM), a NASA science team member of the Interior Exploration using Seismic Investigations, Geodesy and Heat Transport (InSight) mission to Mars, the co-investigator of the NASA Mars Data Analysis Program on Martian Dust Devil Tracks: Albedos, Lifetimes, and Dust Deposition Rates, and an Assistant Professor in the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences at Rutgers University.

Need Help thinking of a Question?  Here are some Tips 

You have heard the phrase “there are no dumb questions”.  This is very true when we are trying to encourage your creativity and passion for science.

Most youth are curious about what it’s like to be a NASA or space scientist – the challenges, daily routines, and technology.  In addition, you may want to know more about scientists’ motivation, career path and inspiration.  We definitely encourage these types of questions! Please prepare for this unique experience by reviewing these websites to help think of a question:

NASA – Mars Exploration Program
Video of the Launch of Perseverance Rover

Get a Close up Look at the Rover

A quick look at what we know about Mars

Images from Mars

Please note, registration is first come first served, so do not wait! Register for the panel and our 4-H STEM Mars Basecamp Challenge! You MUST register for the Oct 1st panel to attend the Oct 3rd challenge. Once you register, the Mars kits will be mailed to you directly!

Invite a Friend!  Use these flyers to spread the word about this event

The 2020 4‑H STEM Challenge will explore sending a mission to Mars with the activity, Mars Base Camp. Developed by Google and Virginia Cooperative Extension, Mars Base Camp is a collection of activities that teaches kids ages 8-14 STEM skills like mechanical engineering, physics, computer science, and agriculture.

 

The Scientist Panel is Co-sponsored by the Free Public Library of New Brunswick, NJ


ENIGMA: Searching for Life on Other Planets

Are we alone in the Universe? To answer this fundamental question, scientists from Rutgers University and NASA are going all the way back to Earth’s beginning — back before there were people, dinosaurs, or even plants!

Video Lecture Coming Soon!

Figuring out how life developed on this planet will be key to discovering if or how life could have formed on other planets, including Mars. As part of the 2020 4-H Mars Base Camp STEM Challenge, ENIGMA’s goal of finding where, how, and why the key ingredients of life develop will be a critical part of any Mars mission.

Learn More About the 2020 4-H STEM Challenge

More ENIGMA resources for students and educators

World Ocean Week

On our blog, we posted a week-long series of activities in celebration of World Ocean Day 2020. Those activities have been archived here for use during any time of the year. The activities have been bundled together as an interactive slide deck, which you can check out below!

Click here to get started

Virtual STEP Clubs

Join us for a STEM-related virtual Short Term Exploratory Program (STEP).  Young people in grades 5-8 are invited to join us for three consecutive sessions to explore a science theme with a real scientist. Sessions are limited to 30 youth to engage in interactive science activities developed from current research projects.  Youth will join the fun online via Zoom videoconferencing for these one-hour sessions.

Explore Life in the Southern Ocean

Help identify some of the amazing marine organisms that live in Antarctica!  Join Andrew Corso, a PhD candidate at the Virginia Institute of Marine Science, and identify “mystery” creatures from his recent research cruise off the coast of the Western Antarctic Peninsula.  Youth will learn how to use a dichotomous key and will receive at home challenges to explore and discuss with their family, friends, and online STEP club participants.

*This program has concluded – but you can follow along by using the resources and recordings posted below. The slide deck is a visual, Internet-powered walkthrough of the activities listed on the table.

Have fun exploring the Southern Ocean!

ID Antarctica Slide Deck

Date Adventure
April 1; 3pm-4:15pm EDT Observing predators and prey in Antarctica

Before you get started, get oriented: Antarctica Worksheet

Then, check out this photo and see if you can identify the predator and prey using the key: Week 1 Mystery Creature and Dichotomous Key

Watch the recording to learn more and find out the answers: Link to Recording of Andrew Corso’s Science Talk

April 8; 3pm-4:15pm EDT Exploring the Penguin Populations at Palmer Station Antarctica

Download this week’s mystery creature and see if you can identify the two circled species: Week 2 Mystery Creature and Dichotomous Key

Watch the recording to learn more and find out the answers: Link to Recording of Andrew Corso’s Science Talk

Explore more penguin data: What can penguins teach us about the ocean? – Project SWARM

Penguin Propulsion Video from BBC Wonder of Animals series

April 15; 3pm-4:15pm EDT Fish of Antarctica

Download this week’s mystery creature and see if you can identify this larval fish: Week 3 Mystery Creature and Identification Key

Watch the recording to learn more and find out the answer:  Link to Recording of Andrew Cross’s Science Talk

Explore more about these unusual Antarctic fishes with this Polar Data Story!

STEM Professionals Panel: learn, engage, and explore four STEM career pathways

Get ready STEM Club, because we have four guest professionals coming to join us for some lively discussion on their STEM careers, life experiences, and tips when considering working towards a STEM Career. Save the date: Thursday, 21 May 2020 @ 4:00 P.M. (Zoom meeting details are found in our Elementary STEM Club’s Google Classroom.) Our panel includes the following:

WILLIAM MILLER-LITTLE is a M.D. Ph.D. Medical Candidate & Researcher at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, Department of Pathology/Immunology actively works in a research laboratory.

MELISSA SMITH is a Phlebotomist & Clinical Lab Supervisor Technician at OSU Medical Center, Outpatient Care East Lab in Columbus, OH (and STEM Club mom.) 

KARINA HANKENFOF is a Product Engineer & Lab Technician, specialized in materials and mechanical systems with Cincinnati Testing Labs in Cincinnati, OH (and Teays Valley alumni.)

CLAY BURGETT is a Chemist & Information Technology Manager at the American Chemical Society for the Chemical Abstracts Service (CAS), a division of the American Chemical Society in Columbus, Ohio.

Ohio 4-H Computer Science Spin Club for 3rd -6th Grade

Come join us and learn about the basics of coding, computer technology, and software. If you enjoy exploring computers or apps then you’ll love learning in this totally virtual environment with people your own age. Learn about hacking, coding, computational thinking, and more!

Every Tuesday & Thursday, starting May 19-June 4 | 2:00 pm to 3:00 pm

Upon completion of this form, you will be enrolled in Ohio 4-H in the Ohio 4-H Computer Science SPIN Club. Once your online registration is confirmed you will receive an email with a link to join the virtual meetings. The link to join the meetings will be the same for all 6 meetings. If you are already enrolled in 4-H your home county will be notified that you are participating in this SPIN Club. If you have any questions or need help with this registration please contact Elliott Lawrence at lawrence.638@osu.edu or Mark Light at light.42@osu.edu.

Location: ONLINE! Click below to join https://go.osu.edu/computerspin.

 

Mystery Doug invites you to another LIVE SCIENCE SHOW

‘Mystery Doug’ has been apart of our STEM Club programming, so we wanted to share an educational opportunity coming up!

Next week, Mystery Doug invites you to another LIVE SCIENCE SHOW. Doug is excited to answer kids’ questions with the help of astronaut Jessica Meir, who filmed videos for us while she was in space! (Seriously!)

Thursday, May 21 (10am Pacific / 1pm Eastern / 11am Mountain / 12pm Central) mysteryscience.com/live

Mystery Doug Livestream

See you on Thursday!

– The Mystery Science Team

COSI Science Festival’s Meet A Scientist Library Youth Program

STEM Club students, please take advantage of this free virtual library youth program made possible through a community collaboration between COSI, DuPont (Circleville), Pickaway County Library, and OSU Extension. Pre-register now!

COSI Science Festival’s Meet A Scientist Youth Program, Saturday, May 9, 2020, 11:00 AM – Peggy Scott, a Dupont polymer scientist, and Christy Yu, a Dupont quality engineer, share their personal experiences and passion for STEM careers to youth and their families. Learn about polymer chemistry, science careers, and engage in a virtual polymer-scavenger hunt from the comfort of your home. Pre-registration is required for this free educational event, go to, go.osu.edu/polymeryouthprogram. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information and passcode to join the meeting. We’ll also send a reminder email prior to the event. #COSISciFest

For more information please email, thoreau.1@osu.edu. Here is the recording of the Polymer Scientist program! 

Educational Apps You Can Take Outside and a Family Virtual Tour of George Washington’s Mount Vernon Estate!

By: Meghan Thoreau

A girl uses a plant identifier app on her mobile phone to take a picture of a plant. Credit: © Bill Shribman Link: https://www.nsf.gov/discoveries/disc_images.jsp?cntn_id=132237&org=NSF 

Identification Apps: go outside, learn, & post

Plant identification apps helps you instantly identify plants! Picture This is accurate, fast, and offers rich learning content! In addition to plant description and plant care tips, you’ll learn about beautiful plants around the world from the plant community on the App. (Picture This is available in both the Apple Store and Google Play, links are attached below.)

Screenshot image: https://apps.apple.com/us/app/picturethis-plant-identifier/id1252497129

In the FREE version, it’s simple to take a photo, find the matching plant, and read through the description to learn more information. (We noticed after initially downloading the App and opening it that a Subscription Ad appears to trick you. Simply click the X on the top right of the screen and continue onward to the Picture this App’s landing page.) We think you’ll get a lot out of the free version of the app, but it limits how many plants a user can identify without upgrading. (We experimented with the App at home and still haven’t hit our limit after taking a couple of dozen pictures that identified our garden veggies, house plants, herb box, and random flowers and bushes planted in the yard.) For the club’s challenge and more, we feel the free version offers a lot of opportunities to learn and engage with, especially outside.

CLUB’S OUTDOOR CHALLENGE: bundle up in your warm spring gear, maybe an umbrella, and go outside exploring with the mobile App, take several pictures of plants in your yard, neighborhood, or better yet go on a hike. Read through all the information provided about the plants, flowers, bushes, or trees you have taken pictures of. When you get home, go through your collection of pictures and find your favorite to post to Google Classroom Stream for your classmates to read and comment on.

YOUR POST SHOULD INCLUDE THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION: 1) Picture of plant, 2) known name/botanical name, 3) a sentence summary (not a direct copy) of the plant description, 4) where the plant got its name, 5) if it has any symbolism, 6) list its characteristics, 7) list it’s the scientific name, 8) it’s planting conditions, 9) a sentence summary of any care guidance, and finally, 10) one thing you find interesting about this plant.
BONUS POINTS if you sketch the plant and include that in your post!


Heads Up: Field Guide to Clouds Mobile App

Screenshot image: https://apps.apple.com/us/app/field-guide-to-clouds/id1121399187?ls=1

The UCAR Center for Science Education’s Field Guide to Clouds is a portable guidebook to identifying clouds. We want you to learn about the different clouds in the sky, including how they form, how they get their names, and what they can tell you about the weather. This assignment will test your cloud knowledge with quizzes and share photos of interesting clouds you find on social media but for us Google Classroom Stream postings. (Field Guide to Clouds is available in both the Apple Store and Google Play, links are attached below.)

CLUB’S OUTDOOR CHALLENGE: go outside and study the clouds. Use the app to identify cloud types and associated weather patterns. Gather your observation notes and cloud pictures and login to Google Classroom Stream: 1) upload a cloud picture you took, 2) name the cloud type, 3) describe in writing how these clouds look, 4) describe what they are made of, and 5) tell us about the weather that is associated with this cloud type.


Virtual Family Field Trip to George Washington’s Mount Vernon

The Mansion at George Washington’s Mount Vernon is one of the most iconic 18th-century homes in America. The building began as a one and one-half story house built in 1734 by George Washington’s father, Augustine Washington, and received its well-known name from his half-brother Lawrence Washington. George Washington began running Mount Vernon in 1754, and over the next 45 years slowly enlarged the dwelling to create the 21-room residence we see today. Washington oversaw each renovation, advising on design, construction, and decoration, despite being away much of the time. Conscious that the world was watching, Washington selected architectural features that expressed his growing status as a Virginia gentleman and ultimately as the leader of a new nation.

Screenshot image: https://virtualtour.mountvernon.org/

CLUB’S FAMILY ACTIVITY: visit the main website and read about George Washington’s Estate, then go on a virtual tour, walking through each room and learning the history and the story behind the furniture, decorations, and objects on display. Please post in Google Classroom Stream one thing you learned that was interested in the tour.

Bowling Green State University Scholar Shares Her Research Experience

By: Allison Cheek of Bowling Green State University, Candidate of Math and Science Education

Research Experience

This past fall, I was an incoming college freshman and I was told I would be participating in a research group. As a scholar of Bowling Green State University’s Science and Math in ACTION Program, I was allowed to participate in a research group. Research is part of our first-year requirements in the program. I thought that was very intimidating, having to conduct research with a team, as well as moving to a college campus and beginning college classes for the first time. Reflecting over this past year, I could not have been more wrong about being a part of a research group! Being on a research team has been an enlightening and satisfying experience. 

Illustration: an urban heat island. Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech, https://climatekids.nasa.gov/heat-islands/

Research Focus: Urban Heat Island

I joined a research group that focused on finding the hottest and coolest places on Bowling Green State University’s campus. Bowling Green is part of an urban heat island. An urban heat island occurs when the temperature is higher in a city than the surrounding rural areas because there are so many man-made structures in one place, such as asphalt parking lots, buildings, concrete structures, and cars. 

Camera Technology

My group and I wanted to find the hottest places on campus and find ways to cool the temperature on campus. We collected data each week at twelve locations throughout campus. Five locations were natural, such as; ponds, grass, and green roofs. Seven locations were man-made, such as roofs and asphalt parking lots. At each location, we recorded the air temperature and surface temperature by using infrared thermometers, as well as FLIR thermal cameras

FLIR T540 Professional Thermal Camera, photo credit: https://www.flir.com/

Roofing Systems

After collecting data for eight weeks, we concluded that the parking lots and roofs on campus had the hottest temperatures. After extensive research, we found that solutions to lower the temperatures on Bowling Green’s campus are to plant trees and vegetation, as well as implement green roofs and stone roofs. 

Green and stone roof systems diagrams, credits: http://www.coninnco.com/building-envelope/dow-building-solutions/inverted-roof-systems, http://godfreyroofing.com/commercial/education/roofing-articles/introduction-to-green-roofing/

Solutions

Using our conclusive solutions, we wrote a Green Fund Grant Proposal to BGSU to implement stone roofs to coat the roof of a dorm with no air conditioning, to cool temperatures. 

 

Graph 1: Natural vs. Man-made Surface Temperature and Air Temperatures created by Allison Cheek and an aerial image of McDonald Hall’s proposed roof site, at Bowling Green State University.

Seek Out Researching Opportunities

Being part of this research team was extremely rewarding for me. We were able to collect data, collaborate ideas, and attempt to implement a solution to cooling BGSU’s campus. I have seen the scientific method come to life with the process of research. Being able to participate in research at a university has been a wonderful experience and I would highly recommend participating in exploration if given the opportunity. This experience has helped me apply my scientific knowledge and make a difference by improving Bowling Green’s campus.

I am grateful to the ACTION Program and to my research advisor, Dr. Jodi Haney, for making this opportunity possible!

Photo: Left Allison Cheek, right Alyson Blunk, research students at BGSU.

 

Upcoming Virtual STEM Club: Teays Valley alum shares college research project findings and leads students in science trivia!

CLUB ZOOM REMINDER: 17 April 2020 @ 3:00 PM

PART 1: Allison Cheek of Bowling Green State University, Candidate of Math and Science Education, presents her temperature research project and experience at BGSU Campus.

BGSU Magazine | Fall 2019

Photo: Left Allison Cheek, right Alyson Blunk, research students at BGSU.

PART 2: Interactive Science Trivia Challenges. Your student will have the best experience if they can join the Zoom meeting on one device and use a second mobile device for a trivia remote to respond to science questions.

via GIPHY

https://zoom.us/join
Meeting ID: 607-351-5896 + passcode

Please note this meeting requires a passcode which can be found on the Zoom event details in Google Classroom. Again, students can log-in to Google Classroom with their school assigned emails and followed by their lunch numbers.

If there are any parents or students with questions or concerns please don’t hesitate to email educators.

Video Conferencing Etiquette, Summary Writing Challenge, and Big Bang AR App!

By: Meghan Thoreau, OSU Extension Educator

Virtual STEM Club: video conferencing in a nutshell Prezi, go.osu.edu/videomeetings.

A significant part of the world population is currently on lock-down in an attempt to contain the coronavirus pandemic. People are turning to technology to go to school, to work, to communicate and stay in touch with their classmates, colleagues, friends, and family.

We held our first virtual STEM Club session last Friday through Zoom! It was great to see everyone’s faces, check-in, and teach video conferencing skills and virtual meeting etiquette; click here to review our presentation again with your child.

Young STEMist learning video conferencing skills.

VIDEO CONFERENCING ETIQUETTE (skill building)

Students learned some quick Dos and Don’ts in participating in virtual meetings:

  • Ensure your technology is working
  • Be on time
  • Mute yourself when not speaking
  • Wear school-appropriate clothing
  • Sit eye-level to camera’s lens, framing yourself from the midsection up
  • Ensuring the right lighting
  • Looking into the camera, giving audience eye-contact
  • Pay attention
  • Have a clean, simple, organized background, or upload a virtual backdrop

SUMMARY WRITING CHALLENGE

Summary writing isn’t simple. It’s a difficult academic skill. As with any new skill, especially writing skills, students need to be explicitly taught and practice. The students went through some basic definitions and discussed why summary writing is important because it improves reading skills as you pick out the main ideas of reading; it also helps with vocabulary skills where you paraphrase a reading, altering the vocabulary and grammar as you do so.

A summary is a long text distilled to its essentials. It summarizes the key points worth noting, without writing examples and lengthy details. The sentence structure and vocabulary has been changed, but the main ideas remain. Critical thinking skills are improved as you decide on the main ideas of the reading to include in the summary. Summary writing also improves editing skills as you draft and edit the summary. It’s helpful to work with peers throughout the writing and revision process – cooperative learning.

Screenshot of Time for Kids reading resource: https://www.timeforkids.com/.

The students were asked to visit, Time for Kids, and read two short expository readings, select one article to write a summary on. (Time for Kids has currently opened it’s a digital library for free!) It’s important to underline or take notes of the main ideas as students read. More details to the assignment and submitting are found in your student’s Google Classroom, logging in with their student Teays Valley email address. If you experience any issues with Google Classroom, contact, Meghan, thoreau.1@osu.edu.

BIG BANG AR APP

The students learned about astronomy, elements, atoms, and virtual reality technology in previous club programs. We thought this free App engages many of the lessons learned in a fun interactive way to learn about the story of our universe. The Big Bang AR App is available on both the Google Play and Apple stores.

This is an immersive learning App designed by Tilda Swinton and CERN scientists to take people on an “epic interactive journey through the birth and evolution of the universe” – in mixed reality and augmented reality. It takes students “back 13.8 billion years and discovers how space, time, and the visible universe came to be.” Students can see the universe form in the palm of their hand and virtually “witness the formation of the very first stars, our solar system, and the planet we call home.” This lesson allows students to learn about the microscopic building blocks that make up everything – and everyone – we know, and find out if we are made of stars. The experience ends with the student able to take a #starselfie and share it with your friends and post it in Google Classroom!

Here are a few of the student #starselfie shares:

STEM Stars!

Please stay tuned while we continue to plan and line up guest speakers for our future Virtual STEM Club programs.

Quotes above from the Apple store description: https://apps.apple.com/us/app/big-bang-ar/id1453396628.

 

Zoom Meeting Reminder

20 Online Learning Resources for Kids - Chicago Parent

STEMist – our 1st Virtual Elementary STEM Club is scheduled for Friday, 3 April 2020 at 3 PM. All students were invited to our virtual class through Google Classroom, using student school emails. All Zoom details, meeting links, meeting ID, tech resources, homework, etc. can be found on our class within Google Classroom. We provided some helpful video assignments for the students/parents to watch prior to the virtual club to help better understand the technology that we will be using before jumping into our Zoom meeting. There is also a pre-meeting quiz to make sure each student knows how to log into a Zoom meeting.

We are going to keep the first session simple and make sure everyone understands the technology, Zoom features, Google Classroom, and video conference etiquette. This is a test for us to see if our bandwidth can handle the participant number, etc.

If there are any parents or students with questions or concerns please don’t hesitate to email educators or call/text Meghan directly 607-351-5896.