"LIVE FROM THE STRATOSPHERE" P R O J E C T U P D A T E PART 1: Welcome message from Geoff PART 2: Current project schedule __________________________________________________________________________ Dear Educator, Welcome to Live from the Stratosphere! Whether you are a "graduate" of Live from Antarctica, our "electronic field trip" from last winter, or a new participant in this 1995-1996 "Year to Explore Space and Cyberspace", we hope you and your students enjoy this novel learning experience. For the first time ever, NASA's Advanced Communications Technology Satellite will provide live, two-way video, audio and data to the Kuiper Airborne Observatory (KAO) as it flies with its infrared telescope at 41,000 feet to explore planets, stars and galaxies. Listening to teachers like yourselves, we've provided opportunities for students to participate in live flights during both day and night-time observing missions. Students in-school or at overnight camp-ins at schools or regional science centers can connect directly to the Kuiper. NASA-TV and some PBS stations and educational networks will provide live television coverage of these events. Because of scheduling conflicts, not all PBS stations will be able to carry all the programs; it is therefore important to "CHECK LOCAL LISTINGS". You can call your local station to find out their plans, and let them know of your interest in this kind of programming. Many teachers found there were alternate TV outlets for LIVE FROM ANTARCTICA -- community colleges, cable systems that carried NASA-TV, etc... So please call ahead to ensure that you and your students will not be disappointed, especially for the live Friday night program! But Live from the Stratosphere is much more than these television events. A Teacher's Guide filled with activities and information will help you brief your students before the video programs, follow-up afterwards and integrate this unique experience into your teaching. In addition, a variety of online experiences will be provided to enrich the project. Day-to-day activities will be reported in Field Journals written by Kuiper's astronomers, pilots, mission directors and other team members. Opportunities will be available for you and your students to learn more about these people and to interact with them. Web and Gopher archives will provide a wealth of information: everything from images about the objects being studied to the careers in aeronautics required to keep the Kuiper flying. Teachers and students will be encouraged to share ideas with each other. Also planned is a collaborative activity in which students gather and analyze local data, and then publish their findings to allow others to learn from their results We've tried to learn from teacher-participants in our previous electronic field trips. After Live from Antarctica we were delighted to learn that most teachers: - rated our print, video and online materials very highly - indicated they would be likely to use project materials again - reported teaching several lessons before and after the videos, and - found the electronic field trip easy to integrate into regular coursework. At the end of the project, we hope you will help us by returning an evaluation form. We rely on your input: positive feedback helps us justify future projects and critical feedback helps us improve. Throughout, we are "all ears". Already, Live From the Hubble Space Telescope is scheduled for later in the '95-'96 school year. Beyond that, we plan to be Live from the Amazon Rainforest, ...Mars, ...the Place Where the Dinosaurs Died, and ...the Arctic Circle! These electronic field trips are being offered free, apart from the minimal print materials costs. All we ask in return is your willingness to help us create better experiences in the future by particiapting in project evaluation. In fact, we hope you feel obliged to assist us by responding! We are glad to have you with us as we go up into the atmosphere to explore space. Through your hard work and inspiration, you will turn a TV and computer into a PASSPORT TO KNOWLEDGE for your students. Thank you for your dedication to our children's future. Sincerely, Geoffrey Haines-Stiles Executive Producer and Project Director __________________________________________________________________________ Live From the Stratosphere schedule: July: Kuiper Airborne Observatory (KAO) Field Journals from last year will provide a sense of what is to come. August 1: Web and Gopher sites open to the public. Mid-August: Printed Teacher's Guides mailed out. Early September: Online discussion groups start, classroom activities begin. Late September: Background video available. October 5 (noon-1:00PM Eastern): Live briefing on the upcoming observing missions. October 12 (2:30-5:00PM Eastern): Live flight, primarily observing the planet Jupiter. October 13 through early 14th (8:00PM- 1:00AM Eastern): Live flight, observing star-forming regions, the Ring Nebula, the face-on spiral galaxy (M33), and Saturn and its mysterious moon, Titan. October 31 (2:00-3:00PM Eastern): A videotaped digest of all the previous programming. Early October through mid-November: Opportunities to interact with KAO team via Email. Other events will be added as their timeframe emerges.