Live From Mars Teacher's Guide Preview: Program One

From: (Jan Wee)
Subject: Live From Mars Teacher's Guide Preview: Program One
Date: Fri, 04 Oct 1996 15:18:09 -0500

Dear discuss-lfm members,

Here is the description of Program One which will be
included in our LFM Teacher's Guide, presented her for
your preview.

Jan Wee


Live From Mars, Program 1, "Countdown"
Live Tuesday, November 19, 1996, 13:00-14:00 Eastern

Sites: Cape Canaveral, FL, and Worcester, MA

"Countdown" will take students, live, behind the scenes at Cape 
Canaveral, launch site for the entire American space program. It will 
also visit Worcester, Massachusetts, where in the last years of the 
19th Century, the young Robert Goddard first dreamt of space flight, and 
then went on to invent the rockets that would take humans into space and 
robots to Mars.

"Countdown" will document the final intense hours before launch. We'll see 
Mars Global Surveyor lift off and the beginning of its 9-month journey. 
Archival footage and NASA animation provide background: the planning and 
design of both spacecraft and Mission, what Surveyor is supposed to do, 
and how its instruments will create the first detailed global map of Mars. 

Pathfinder, the second of the two Mars-bound spaceships, will be in final 
prep for a December launch. Live scenes will take viewers as close to the 
rocket as safety (the spacecraft will be fueled) and cleanliness and non-
contamination measures allow. Participants in Live From Mars will be 
among the last humans to see Pathfinder and the Sojourner rover down 
here on Earth. Then on July 4, 1997, they can be among the first to see it 
"wake up" on Mars.

Students in Massachusetts and Florida will interact with members of the 
Pathfinder and Surveyor teams, via live 2-way video. E-mail will allow 
students, anywhere, to participate. Taped questions from schools around 
America will add other voices and locations. Students will also give their 
peers a first-person, kids' eye tour of the Cape, including the places from 
which humans went to the Moon.

The program will also consider why we should travel to Mars and how 
Earth and Mars are alike and different. It will review the latest 
information on Earth's neighbor, including the very hot topic of possible 
life on the Red Planet. Viewers will see how liquid water was almost 
certainly once present on Mars. Activity 1.3, "Follow the Water", will be 
demonstrated by students on camera, providing teachers with a model,and 
other students with motivation for their own hands-on work.

"Countdown" will provide the best images of Mars from orbit, while 
it reviews previous American missions and their achievements. 
Viking images will show the mighty volcanoes, the great Valles 
Marineris canyon system, and the channels. Students will see how 
those channels were once regarded as "canals", fueling speculation 
about past alien civilizations on Mars.

The program will show how students can extend their Martian adventure 
and stay connected via the Internet. Details of Live From Mars online 
components and its collaborative project, The Planet Explorer Toolkit, 
will be provided.