NASA’s Science Mission Directorate (SMD) plays an essential role in inspiring the next generation of explorers through its research and discoveries. SMD encourages development of education programs and products that utilize SMD research, missions, and discoveries to engage, excite, and educate audiences. Here product developers will find resources and opportunities to support their efforts.
NASA Wavelength is a searchable database of existing SMD educational products and activities.
You can search for all education resources created by all areas of NASA.
If you would like to be part of SMD’s E/PO Community, please contact the SMD Education Forum that most closely aligns with your interests; contacts are listed at the top of the People Tab.
Over the years, I have published topical guides to useful resources for astronomy education on a variety of websites, inculding those of several NASA projects. I got a request recently to consolidate the current guides in one convenient place, so people can find the (darn) things.
So I have given each current guide a short URL and listed them all on one sheet.
You can find the list now at: http://bit.ly/fraknoiguides
New among them are:
1. An updated guide to the work of women in astronomy that includes more people of color
2. A guide to copyright-free images of all
The Universal Design for Learning Mobilization Guide for SMD Science Activation Teams was created to support SciAct teams who are getting started in implementing UDL within their projects. The Guide provides a basic overview of Universal Design for Learning (UDL), guidelines for conducting a UDL Self-study/assessment, thematic findings from Katie Novak’s initial review and one-on-one consultation meetings with select SciAct teams, and UDL implementation tips. Groups requiring additional assistance from Dr. Novak during Year 5 should contact Ethan Cayko, BUAC Project Manager at WGBH (firstname.lastname@example.org).
NOTE: This guide has been made fully accessible.Download
One of our CCRI teachers Nicole Dulaney recently created a unit plan (9-12) that passed SMD product review and is available for national distribution. Please distribute to your relevant teacher networks. All questions and feedback are welcome.
Earth’s Energy Budget is a unit plan designed for high school students grades 9 – 12 with access to computers, NASA GISS Panoply software, and RStudio. This unit takes approximately three weeks to complete. The goal of this unit is for the students to learn about each component of Earth’s energy budget formula and how the contribution of each component changes with
Would you like to take middle school children beyond the solar system? With Afterschool Universe you can!
Afterschool Universe is a freely available curriculum for an out-of-school-time astronomy program for middle school students (roughly grades 6-8 or ages 11-14) developed by NASA. Using hands-on activities and interdisciplinary teaching techniques, it explores basic astronomy concepts and takes participants on a journey through the universe. Afterschool Universe offers an opportunity to run a well-tested and easily implemented program in your own local community. Designed for flexible implementation, it can be run as a science club, a summer camp, as a regular afterschool
STEM Day at Fenway Park was held in Boston, MA on May 30, 2018 and reached ~4000 students and educators. This cross-collaborative effort, led by NASA GSFC, enabled Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) from a variety of organizations to share rich science content reflecting NASA research & exploration.
NASA Astromaterials scientists Dave Draper & Liz Rampe presented their research to a packed stadium of participants.
The NASA Astromaterials tables enabled participants to observe and hold authentic Lunar and meteorite samples, learn about the Mars Science Laboratory (Curiosity) Rover Mission, and engage in a Lunar geologist classification activity.
Our STEM experts, PaigeDownload
NASA CubeSat 101: Basic Concepts and Processes for First-Time CubeSat Developers
NASA’s CubeSat Launch Initiative is excited to announce the release of NASA CubeSat 101: Basic Concepts and Processes for First-Time CubeSat Developers. The guide is intended for first-time CubeSat developers, and especially for CubeSats being developed at educational institutions, interested in applying for a launch opportunity through NASA’s CubeSat Launch Initiative. It covers the CubeSat development process, requirements for launch, licensing procedures and flight certification documentation templates.Download
Free Materials: (contact email@example.com for details)
1. One pair free eclipse glasses for teachers (they send me a SASE). (or they can come by my booth at NSTA).
2. Free box of 250 neck wallets (unopened; left over from 2013 NSTA). Pay only $35 shipping and handling.
3. A few EXHIBITOR badges available for NSTA (does not get teachers into sessions or meals - more for E/PO community).
Eclipse Resource List:
I now have posted a eclipse resource list. Since this is a non-NASA site it can link to commercial sites. Please check it out and make suggestions for
We're looking for "ambassadors" to help spread the word about NASAWavelength.org!
- Short 5 minute presentation: if you only have a few minutes, use the short PPT, which includes 2 slides + presenter's notes
- Suggested tour of NASA - Includes two documents 1) Word document that walks through giving a demo of NASA Wavelength (Playlist for Wavelength Tour.docx) and 2) a PPT presentation (Tour of NASA WavelengthApril18.pptx) with screenshots and speaker's notes that you can use either as a back-up (in case not a live Internet connection) or if you prefer working with screenshots (file is named )
Designed for informal audiences, and developed in collaboration with SMD-funded astrophysics E/PO teams, the Universe Discovery Guides highlight astrophysics education and public outreach resources from across more than 30 NASA astrophysics missions and programs. The 12 free guides, one per month, are designed to be short and modular, so that users can easily select content based upon their needs. Each of the guides addresses a common astrophysics topic and contains the following sections:
- interpretive story,
- night sky feature(s) to observe,
- media and strategies useful in conveying the science topic,
- activities that have passed the NASA education product review, and
This is a quick start guide and a "sampler" of the variety of Astrophysics education and public outreach (E/PO) resources created by the NASA Science Mission Directorate funded E/PO teams.
The Sampler provides not only examples of the NASA Astrophysics E/PO resources, but also ways that the resource could be used, and how/where to obtain the resource.
The information is also online at:
The NASA SMD Heliophysics Community of Practice has been meeting monthly for almost three years and we would love to welcome new members! If you work with Middle or High School educators (formal or informal!) through workshops or conferences that you share opportunities with, or perhaps you have an educator or two that is enthusiastic to learn more about solar activity and Sun-Earth connections while connecting and buiding relationships with other science educators across the nation, this group may be of great interest to them.
We have created a short (3 min!) video that explains what this community is allDownload
In February 2015, Steve Glendenning (firstname.lastname@example.org) presented at the Planetary EPO Community's monthly community call to share out information regarding the NASA 3D Resources portal: http://nasa3d.arc.nasa.gov
- This is a one-stop-shop for NASA content; people can add to and take from the gallery for content.
- The project started with 3D Models (lighwave, Maya, etc) for game and animation developers, but given the 3D printing arena that is building models layer by layer, there is new interest from a wider audience.
- The Model gallery: a lot of content, missions, game developers, vehicles, satellites. Additional planetary data would be welcome in the gallery!
The Dawn Mission E/PO is planning to commemorate the arrival of the spacecraft at dwarf planet Ceres with a festival called i C Ceres. As we did with Vesta Fiesta heralding the mission’s arrival at the giant asteroid in 2011, i C Ceres will provide a forum and resources for events to be held across the country and around the world. Vesta Fiesta recorded over 100 festivals at museums, observatories, and backyards; from the flagship event at the Pasadena Convention Center that highighted Dawn and small bodies missions associated with JPL with mission team members presenting nation-wide, to the Chicago Symphony Orchestra's outdoor concert hall,Download
In response to the expressed needs of scientists, we have created two, one-page guides to assist scientists and engineers interested in E/PO. The first is "The Quick Introduction to Education and Public Outreach," which offers suggestions to first-timers about how they might start reaching out. The second is the "Making the Most of Your E/PO Time - Increasing Your Efficiency and Impact," which suggests leveraging existing materials and programs, and provides other ideas for scientists and engineers to make the best use of their time.Download Attachments
As part of the Astro Forum's higher education efforts and community collaboration discussions held at our retreats, we are looking into how NASA can help instructors of “Astronomy 101” courses for college non-science majors. We are examining what resources are available on a series of key topics in introductory astronomy, and what existing and new materials NASA can bring to the table. As a first step, here is a resource guide about cosmology (at the beginning college level). It includes written and web materials from NASA and from other easily available sources.
Guide has passed product review and is nowDownload
As part of the Astro Forum's higher education efforts and community collaboration discussions held at our retreats, we are looking into how NASA can help instructors of “Astronomy 101” courses for college non-science majors. We are examining what resources are available on a series of key topics in introductory astronomy, and what existing and new materials NASA can bring to the table. As a follow up to the Cosmology Resource Guide, here is a resource guide about exoplanets (at the beginning college level). It includes written and web materials from NASA and from other easily available sources.
The Guide hasDownload
The Forum Leads delivered an invited plenary presentation entitled "Science and Science Education Go Hand-in-Hand: The Impact of the NASA Science Mission Directorate Education and Public Outreach Program" at the 2013 Annual Meeting of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific (ASP) in San Jose, CA (Ensuring STEM Literacy: A National Conference on STEM Education and Public Outreach). Attached are the slides used in the presentation and a pre-print version of the conference proceedings article submited to the ASP Conference Series.Download Attachments
NASA missions, educational projects around the country, and cosmologists themselves have produced a wide range of materials that astronomy instructors (and their students) can use to learn about the latest developments in modern cosmology. Too often, however, these materials go unused because instructors are not familiar with them or don’t have them accessible at the time that they need them. This annotated guide is designed to highlight useful materials on the web and in print. It was produced in consultation with a panel of Astronomy 101 instruc¬tors, who were interviewed about their teaching, and NASA education specialists, who suggested resourcesDownload
The discovery and characterization of exoplanets is one of the most exciting and fast-changing areas in modern astronomical research. As a result, Astronomy 101 instructors have had trouble keeping up with the flow of new techniques, instruments and discoveries. To help, NASA missions, educational projects around the country, and scientists themselves have produced a wide range of materials that astronomy instructors (and their students) can use to learn about the latest developments. This annotated guide is designed to highlight useful materials on the web and in print. It was produced in consultation with NASA education specialists, who suggested some resources
The Year of the Solar System provides a framework of thematically structured existing products and activities. Each topic highlights different aspects of our Solar System – its formation, volcanism, gravity, ice, life elsewhere? – weaving together activities, resources, news, and ideas that scientists, faculty, teachers, clubs, and organizations can use to engage audiences in exploring the big questions of Planetary Science.
Opportunities to get involved with education and public outreach can be found in the Scientist E/PO brochure.
EarthSpace is a searchable database of undergraduate classroom materials for faculty teaching Earth and space sciences at both the introductory and