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JoBea Way,9/1895 4:12 PM,Draft of KidSat release 2 >the KidSat program, including Samuel Gompers Secondary School in San >Diego, Calif., Buist Academy in Charleston, S.C. and the Washington >Accelerated Learning Center in Pasadena, Calif. Each year, additional >classrooms in these areas will be added to the pilot program, as will >new schools in Omaha, Houston, and Baltimore school districts. By >the end of the pilot program -- when the KidSat information >superhighway has been set up, the KidSat curriculum has been developed >and tested, and a payload has been installed on the space station for >continuous accessibility to space -- the programs will be open to any >school district in the country. > > KidSat will allow students in urban and rural schools to use >data from live shuttle missions for a variety of purposes, added >Elizabeth Jones Stork, director of the western regional branch of The >Johns Hopkins University Institute for the Academic Advancement of >Youth, which is developing the educational component of the program. >The images and data students are able to obtain from these missions >will be used in their studies of geography and history, as well as >mathematics and Earth sciences. > > In the design and mission oeprations part of the program, >children will learn basic principles of gravity, geometry and scales >of the Earth, Stork said. They will be able to study an array of >current events -- such as the flooding of the Mississippi River, >volcanic eruptions, or the advance of deforestation in the Amazon -- >to understand the impact of natural and human activity on the >environment. History, in turn, can be recreated by imaging, for >example, regions of the East Coast where famous battles of the Civil >War were fought. > > "KidSat will provide an innovative way to present materials to >students and will underscore the opportunities they have to comprehend >and master concepts that are being presented," Stork said. "In turn, >those experiences will challenge young explorers and encourage them to >apply their skills to real world issues." > > The first KidSat payloads to fly aboard the space shuttle will >consist of a Kodak digital still camera mounted in the overheard >window of the space shuttle, and two video cameras mounted in the >shuttle's cargo bay. Students will decide which regions of the world >are scientifically or historically interesting to them, then operate >their cameras to photograph those regions. They may decide to study >the volcanic "Ring of Fire" that surrounds the Pacific Ocean, the >Himalayas or view the western European theater in which many battles >of World War II unfolded. > > KidSat represents an investment in the nation's future, giving >kids exposure to environmental studies from low-Earth orbit, said Dr. >Sally Ride, former astronaut and currently professor of physics at the >University of California, San Diego. Dr. Ride is leading the >development of the mission operations element of KidSat with the >support of NASA's Johnson Space Center and an enthusiastic team of >undergraduate and graduate students. > > "By attaching KidSat to the space shuttle, students will be >able to participate in space exploration as astronauts and cosmonauts >do," she said. > > Once the program has been established, the KidSat instruments >themselves may be replaced by more elaborate instruments, such as an >atmospheric, remote-sensing instrument and the technologies needed to >create a full telepresence in space. Using JPL's digital image >animation lab and virtual reality headsets, students will be able to >"fly" over Earth, learning more about the geographic and atmospheric >relationships that drive Earth's climate and seasons. The program will >also benefit from new, state-of-the-art optical technologies being >developed at JPL. > > A mission control "gateway" located at the University of >California, San Diego, is being linked to student mission operations >centers at the three participating schools this year. The operations >centers at UCSD and the pilot schools will be staffed by students and >designed in very simple ways so that they can be replicated at >participating schools in the future. Students connecting on-line to >the KidSat gateway will be able to operate their cameras from their >classrooms. The images will be available in near real-time over the >Internet from the KidSat data system located at JPL. > > Teachers from Pasadena, San Diego, Charleston, Omaha and >Humbolt (County?, Calif.?) are working with scientists and engineers Printed for firstname.lastname@example.org (Sally K. Ride)
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