Educational CyberPlayGround: K12 Newsletters

NASA opportunities for the education community

Check out the following NASA opportunities for the education community. Full descriptions are listed below.

Free Education Webinar Series from the Aerospace Education Services Project
Audience: K-12 Educators
Next Event Date: July 3, 2013, at 4 p.m. EDT
Center for Gulf Studies Summer Speaker Series
Audience: All Educators and Students
Event Dates: Each Monday at 11 a.m. CDT through August 2013
Professional Development Opportunity for Science on a Sphere Installations
Audience: Science Museums and Other Informal Education Venues
Application Deadline: July 8, 2013
Training Dates: Nov. 15-16, 2013
National Academy of Sciences Announcement of Opportunity to Submit Input to Study on Human Spaceflight
Audience: All Educators and Students
Submission Deadline: July 9, 2013
Sally Ride EarthKAM Summer 2013 Mission
Audience: Middle School Educators and Students, and the Informal Education Community
Mission Dates: July 10-12, 2013
National Air and Space Museum Super Science Saturday Events
Audience: All Educators and Students
Next Event: July 13, 2013
LAUNCH Systems Challenge 2013
Audience: Higher Education Educators and Students
Final Entry Deadline: July 15, 2013
Free Virtual Professional Development Workshop Series: Rockets to Racecars
Audience: K-12 Educators and Home Educators
Event Dates: First workshop takes place on July 16, 2013, at 2:15 p.m. EDT
U.S. Department of Education Principal Ambassador Fellowships
Audience: K-12 Principals
Application Deadline: July 16, 2013
ROSES-13 Amendment 9: Final Text for ROSES-13 Appendix A.35, The GLOBE Implementation Office
Audience: Education Organizations and Consortiums
Proposal Deadline: July 19, 2013
MAVEN Workshop — Red Planet: Read, Write, Explore!
Audience: Teachers of Grades 3-5
Application Deadline: July 24, 2013
Workshop Date: Aug. 24, 2013
NASA Night Rover Energy Challenge
Audience: Higher Education Educators and Students
Early Registration Deadline: July 26, 2013
Regular Registration Deadline: Oct. 25, 2013
NASA Partners With the LEGO Group for Design and Build Contest
Audience: Anyone Age 13 or Older
Entry Deadline: July 31, 2013
REGISTRATION OPEN: Zero Robotics High School Tournament 2013
Audience: 9-12 Educators and Students
Competition Begins: Sept. 7, 2013
NASA Exploration Design Challenge
Audience: K-12 Educators and Students
Virtual Crew Registration Deadline: March 14, 2014
Don’t miss out on upcoming NASA education opportunities.
For a full list of events, opportunities and more, visit the Educator and Student Current Opportunity pages on NASA’s website:
— Educators
— Students
Free Education Webinar Series from the Aerospace Education Services Project
The Aerospace Education Services Project is presenting a series of free webinars throughout July 2013. All webinars can be accessed online. Join aerospace education specialists to learn about activities, lesson plans, educator guides and resources to bring NASA into your classroom.
Missions to Planet Earth: Remote Sensing (Grades 4-8)
July 3, 2013, at 4 – 5 p.m. EDT
The world around us is constantly changing. Sometimes these changes happen suddenly and are easily observed. In many cases, changes in the Earth are not easily seen, yet are readily apparent in comparisons made over time. Join aerospace education specialist Rick Varner for this session designed to help teachers and students appreciate these changes and study the impacts of Earth’s natural systems and how humans affect their environment.
Our Solar System: A Model Overview (Grades 4-8)
July 10, 2013, at 1 – 2 p.m. EDT
Aerospace education specialist Steve Culivan will present NASA inquiry activities that demonstrate remote sensing and scale models to better visualize our sun, planets, asteroids and other objects as a whole system.
Exploring NASA Climate Change Resources (Grades 3-12)
July 10, 2013, at 4 – 5 p.m. EDT
Join aerospace education specialist Lester Morales as he discusses ways NASA is studying climate change. Participants will received a list of website tools and interactive remote sensing technologies to help bring an understanding of climate change into the classroom.
For more information about these webinars, and to see a full list of webinars taking place through July 2013, visit
Questions about this series of webinars should be directed to Chris Gamrat at

Center for Gulf Studies Summer Speaker Series
The INFINITY Science Center in Mississippi invites the public, both young and old, to meet some of the leading researchers in the world studying the Gulf of Mexico. INFINITY is hosting the First Annual Center for Gulf Studies Summer Speaker Series. These lectures will take place each Monday at 11 a.m. CDT through August. The lectures are free with paid admission to the INFINITY Science Center.
Researchers associated with the Center for Gulf Studies will discuss what they are learning and discovering about the Gulf and its importance to our living, playing and working in and around its waters. Next week’s lecture on July 8, 2013, will include a discussion titled “Observing Beneath the Waves” led by Dr. Vernon Asper.
For more information, including a full list of upcoming lectures, visit

Professional Development Opportunity for Science on a Sphere Installations
NASA’s next mission to Mars — the Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution, or MAVEN, mission — is set to launch in November 2013. MAVEN will explore the Red Planet’s upper atmosphere, ionosphere and interactions with the sun and solar wind. By examining the loss of volatile compounds, such as water and carbon dioxide, MAVEN will provide insight into the history of Mars’ atmosphere and climate, liquid water and habitability.
Invisible Mars, a new show for Science On a Sphere, explains what we know about Mars’ climate and how the MAVEN mission will help us understand how and why it’s changed over time. Join MAVEN scientists, engineers and educators at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center on Nov. 15-16, 2013, for a professional development training on how you can use Invisible Mars at your venue.
Participants may be given a stipend to help pay for their travel. Participants and their families will be invited to attend the MAVEN launch, currently scheduled for Nov. 18, 2013.
The application deadline for this training event has been extended to July 8, 2013. Space is limited. To apply, visit
To learn more about MAVEN, visit and

National Academy of Sciences Announcement of Opportunity to Submit Input to Study on Human Spaceflight

The U.S. National Research Council of the National Academies is currently conducting a congressionally requested study to examine the goals, core capabilities and direction of human spaceflight. This study, which is being carried out by the National Research Council’s Committee on Human Spaceflight, will provide findings and recommendations to guide the U.S. human spaceflight enterprise in a sustainable manner. The Committee on Human Spaceflight recognizes the importance of reaching out to the communities interested in human exploration and is using several approaches to solicit input regarding the motivations, goals and the possible evolution of human spaceflight. One important source of input is the call for short papers from communities around the world with an interest in human spaceflight.
The Committee on Human Spaceflight invites interested individuals and groups to submit input papers describing their own ideas on the role of human spaceflight and their vision for a suggested future.
For more information on the committee and the goals of the study, please see the statement of task at
Submissions must be made through no later than July 9, 2013. All submitted white papers will be made public.
Questions about this solicitation should be directed to

Sally Ride EarthKAM Summer 2013 Mission

Students and educators are invited to join NASA for the Sally Ride EarthKAM Summer 2013 Mission from July 10-12, 2013. Guide your students in hands-on research as they program a camera aboard the International Space Station to take pictures of specific locations on Earth. The optional online curriculum at the Sally Ride EarthKAM website is targeted at middle school students, but could easily be adapted for other grade levels. All students and educators are welcome — including participants in summer and after-school programs.
For more information and to register for the upcoming mission, visit the Sally Ride EarthKAM home page at
If you have questions about the EarthKAM project, please email

National Air and Space Museum Super Science Saturday Events
Join the National Air and Space Museum on the second Saturday of each month during 2013 for Super Science Saturday at the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, Va. Through demonstrations and hands-on activities, visitors of all ages will become immersed in science, technology, engineering and mathematics topics related to aviation and space exploration. Each event takes place from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Eastern Time. Admission is free, and parking is $15.
Upcoming topics include:
July 13, 2013 — Weather
Aug. 10, 2013 — Helicopters
Sept. 14, 2013 — Living and Working in Space
Oct. 12, 2013 — Balloons and Blimps
Nov. 9, 2013 — The Moon and Beyond
Dec. 14, 2013 — The Wright Brothers
For more information, visit
Questions about this series of lectures should be directed to

LAUNCH Systems Challenge 2013

NASA, the U.S. Agency for International Development, the U.S. Department of State and Nike recently announced a challenge to identify 10 game-changing innovations that could transform the system of fabrics to one that advances equitable global economic growth, drives human prosperity and replenishes the planet’s resources.
Challenge organizers are interested in innovations with potential to scale in two years, as well as game-changing early stage technologies and prototypes. Innovations can be business models, financial instruments, technologies and programs that accelerate research, education and capacity building.
The LAUNCH Systems Challenge 2013 is open through July 15, 2013.
Forum partners will select 10 innovators to present their technology solutions at the LAUNCH Systems Challenge 2013 forum, which will be held Sept. 26-29, 2013, at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif.
NASA and the LAUNCH Council — thought leaders representing a diverse and collaborative body of entrepreneurs, scientists, engineers, government, media and business — will participate in the forum and help guide these innovations forward. The selected LAUNCH innovators will receive networking and mentoring opportunities from influential business and government leaders, as well as portfolio presentations.
LAUNCH was created to identify, showcase and support innovative approaches to global sustainability challenges. LAUNCH searches for visionaries whose ideas, technologies or programs show great promise for making tangible impacts on society in the developed and developing worlds.
For more information about the LAUNCH Systems Challenge 2013 and how to enter, visit
Inquiries about this challenge should be directed to

Free Virtual Professional Development Workshop Series: Rockets to Racecars

Start your engines! Engage students in real-world mathematics and incorporate standards-based hands-on activities to make mathematics challenging and fun. Bring the thrill of racing and its connections to flight into your classroom with the “Rockets 2 Racecars” educational materials.
Learn about tires and air pressure as you calculate the effects of temperature on regular tires as well as Space Shuttle and racecar tires in the session “Measure Up and Calculate.” Use mathematics to interpret air pressure and air flow data on airplane wings and racecar spoilers in “May the Force Uplift You…or Not!”. Test the variables that affect cars’ stability to travel by constructing a balloon-powered race car and maneuver through different angles to see force in action in “Newton’s Angle on Force and Motion.” Design a capsule to land on Mars and see its effectiveness by calculating speed or rate of descent in “Drag Race to Mars Engineering Design Challenge.”
Sign up today to join the free four-day workshop series on July 16, July 18, July 22 and July 24, 2013, from 2:15pm to 3:30pm EDT.
Participants who register and complete all four workshops are eligible to receive five continuing education credit hours
For more information, visit
To register for the Rockets 2 Racecars workshop series, visit
Questions about this opportunity should be directed to Marilé Colon Robles at

U.S. Department of Education Principal Ambassador Fellowships

The U.S. Department of Education is accepting applications for the 2013-2014 Principal Ambassador Fellowship. This position will provide outstanding principals who have a record of leadership, student achievement, strong communication skills and insights from their school experiences an opportunity to highlight the voice of the principal within the education community and the country at large.
Applicants selected for this one-year program will participate on a part-time basis from their home locations for the department, in addition to their regular school responsibilities, working in collaboration with the department’s regional and federal offices.
Applications are due July 16, 2013.
For more information about this fellowship opportunity, visit
If you have questions about the fellowship, please email your inquiries to

ROSES-13 Amendment 9: Final Text for ROSES-13 Appendix A.35, The GLOBE Implementation Office

The Global Learning and Observations to Benefit the Environment, or GLOBE, Program is an important element of NASA’s commitment to promoting science, technology, engineering and mathematics, or STEM education among youth worldwide and to enhancing its international collaboration through the peaceful use of space. The Earth Science Division of NASA’s Science Mission Directorate solicits proposals for an organization or a consortium of organizations to host the GLOBE Implementation Office and collaborate with NASA in the implementation of GLOBE, with the objective of strengthening the programmatic support for GLOBE and enhancing the value of GLOBE to its worldwide community of partners, students, teachers and scientists.
NASA anticipates making one award through this competitive solicitation at approximately $0.5-0.8M for the first four months of transition from the current operations and $2.0-2.5M per year for the subsequent three years, for a total of three years and four months.
This Amendment creates Appendix A.35. Proposals are due July 19, 2013.
This amendment to the NASA Research Announcement “Research Opportunities in Space and Earth Sciences (ROSES) 2013” (NNH13ZDA001N) has been posted on the NASA research opportunity homepage at{92D12049-104D-33CB-0D45-5EE687592456}&path=init  and appears on the RSS feed at
Questions concerning Appendix A.35, The GLOBE Implementation Office, may be directed to Ming-Ying Wei, Earth Science Division, Science Mission Directorate, NASA Headquarters, Washington, DC 20546-0001. Telephone: (202) 358-0771; Email:

MAVEN Workshop — Red Planet: Read, Write, Explore!
The Mars Atmosphere and Volatile EvolutioN, or MAVEN, mission will explore the planet’s upper atmosphere, ionosphere and interactions with the solar wind. Set to launch in November 2013, the mission will provide invaluable insights into the history of Mars’ atmosphere and climate, liquid water and planetary habitability.
Join the MAVEN education team for a one-day workshop on the MAVEN mission and the accompanying program for grades 3-5, Red Planet: Read, Write Explore! This program features six standards-based lessons that combine science, literacy and art to help students understand planetary habitability and the MAVEN mission. The workshop will introduce participants to these lessons and concepts. The workshop also will have a session devoted to Spanish speaking English Language Learner and English as a Second Language students. Attendees will receive free classroom materials.
The workshop will take place Aug. 24, 2013, in Los Angeles, Calif. Applications are due July 24, 2013, but space is limited so interested educators are encouraged to apply early.
For more information about the workshop and to apply online, visit
Please email any questions about this opportunity to

NASA Night Rover Energy Challenge

Registration is open for teams seeking to compete in the $1.5 million energy storage competition known as the Night Rover Challenge, sponsored by NASA and the Cleantech Open of Palo Alto, Calif.
To win, a team must demonstrate a stored-energy system that can power a simulated solar-powered exploration vehicle that can operate through multiple cycles of daylight and extended periods of darkness.
During the Night Rover Challenge, energy storage systems will receive electrical energy from a simulated solar collector during daylight hours. During darkness, the stored energy will be used for simulated thermal management, scientific experimentation, communications and rover movement. A winning system must exceed the performance of an existing state-of-the-art system by a predetermined margin. The winning system will be the one that has the highest energy-storage density.
The challenge is extended to individuals, groups and companies working outside the traditional aerospace industry. Unlike most contracts or grants, awards will be made only after solutions are demonstrated successfully.
Early registration closes on July 26, 2013. Regular registration closes on Oct. 25, 2013.
For information about the Night Rover Challenge and how to register a team, visit
This is a Centennial Challenge in which NASA provides the prize purse for technological achievements by independent teams while the Cleantech Open manages the competition as NASA’s allied organization. For more information about the Cleantech Open, visit
NASA’s Centennial Challenges program is part of the agency’s Space Technology Mission Directorate, which is innovating, developing, testing and flying hardware for use in NASA’s future missions. For more information about NASA’s Space Technology Mission Directorate and its Centennial Challenges program, visit

NASA Partners With the LEGO Group for Design and Build Contest
NASA and the LEGO Group are partnering to inspire the next generation of aerospace engineers by offering a new design competition. The competition will spur students of all ages to use the toy bricks in building models of future airplanes and spacecraft.
The “NASA’s Missions: Imagine and Build” competition is now open with an entry deadline of July 31, 2013. Winners in each category will be selected by a panel of NASA and LEGO officials and announced Sept. 1, 2013.
The first category in the contest is “Inventing Our Future of Flight.” In this challenge, participants will design and build their idea for an aircraft of the future based on real concepts and new technology NASA’s aeronautics innovators are working on to increase fuel efficiency and reduce harmful emissions and noise.
In addition to building a model from LEGO bricks or using the LEGO Digital Designer computer program, participants in this category also must prepare and write a technical paper. The paper will explain how the contest design takes advantage of NASA’s ideas and potentially improves on them.
This category divides entrants into two groups: young student builders ages 13 to 18 and an open group for anyone age 13 and older. The two winners will receive a custom-made LEGO trophy and a collection of NASA memorabilia.
The second contest category is “Imagine Our Future Beyond Earth.” In this challenge, participants will use their imaginations to design and build a futuristic vehicle from LEGO bricks that might travel through the air or in space. It could be an airplane, rotorcraft, rocket, spacecraft, satellite, rover or something else. The design can be based in reality or purely a flight of fancy. This competition is open to entrants 16 or older. The grand prize is a LEGO set signed by the set’s designer and a collection of NASA memorabilia. There also is a runner up prize.
To read the complete rules and guidelines for submitting the LEGO model and technical paper, visit
LEGO Systems, Inc. is the North American division of The LEGO Group, a privately-held, family-owned company based in Billund, Denmark. The company is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of creatively educational play materials for children. For more information and to visit the virtual LEGO world, go to
For more information about NASA aeronautics research and space exploration, visit


REGISTRATION OPEN: Zero Robotics High School Tournament 2013

The Zero Robotics High School Tournament 2013 will take place this fall, offering high school students the opportunity to design experiments that will be tested in space.
Zero Robotics challenges high school student teams to write their own algorithms to fly the Synchronized Position Hold, Engage, Reorient, Experimental Satellites, or SPHERES. The competition starts online where teams compete to solve an annual challenge guided by mentors. Students can create, edit, share, save, simulate and submit code, all from a Web browser. After several phases of virtual competition, finalists are selected to compete in a live championship aboard the International Space Station!
Teams may register now:
1) Go to
2) Log in or create an account. (Note: You can start programming in the online integrated development environment at this point!)
3) Click Tournaments and register for the High School Tournament 2013.
4) Create a team and invite other users.
5) Visit Resources to get started (Note: new, improved tutorials will be available in late August).
The High School competition starts on Sept. 7, 2013, with a live webcast kickoff event. Applications will be accepted through Sept. 8, 2013, and you can try out the site right now by creating an account.
Zero Robotics is organized by Massachusetts Institute of Technology Space Systems Laboratory, Aurora Flight Sciences Corporation and TopCoder, and is sponsored by The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, NASA and the Center for Advancement of Science in Space.
Please email any questions about this opportunity to

NASA Exploration Design Challenge
Students from Kindergarten through 12th grade will have the opportunity to play a unique role in the future of human spaceflight through participation in NASA’s Exploration Design Challenge, or EDC. NASA EDC invites students around the world to think and act like scientists in order to overcome one of the major hurdles of deep space long-duration exploration — the dangers associated with space radiation. Students taking part in the challenge will discover how to plan and design improved radiation shielding aboard the Orion Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle, currently being developed by NASA, Lockheed Martin and other partners to carry astronauts to space, venturing farther than humans have ever gone before.
Through a series of science, technology, engineering and mathematics, or STEM, engagement activities, students in grades K-8 will analyze different materials that simulate space radiation shielding and recommend materials that best block radiation and protect astronauts. Students in grades 9-12 will think and act like engineers as they apply what they learn to design shielding to protect a sensor on the Orion crew module from space radiation. After a review of the design solutions submitted by teams in the grades 9-12 challenge, five finalist teams will be selected and matched with a mentor from NASA to test their designs in a virtual simulator. The winning team will build a prototype radiation shield that will be analyzed and submitted to Lockheed Martin for flight certification on the inaugural flight of the Orion Exploration Flight Test, or EFT-1.
The five U.S. finalist teams from the grades 9-12 challenge will be invited to attend the EFT-1 launch, currently scheduled for November 2014. The names of all students, grades K-12, participating in the NASA EDC will fly aboard the spacecraft as honorary virtual crewmembers for Orion’s first flight. The deadline to register students for the virtual crew is March 14, 2014.
For more information and to register online, visit
For more information about Orion, visit
Email any questions about this opportunity to