Dawn Teacher Resources

Program Element / Activity Title:
Dawn Teacher Resources
E/PO Project Name:
Contact Information:
McREL International
4601 DTC Blvd.
Suite 500
Denver, CO 80237
Short Description:

Material development for FY 2012 will include Solar System Origins module and accompanying interactives including the stand alone activity "Active Accretion" and "Active Phase Changes." For FY 2012, this will include formatting, posting, internal and product review and subsequent revisions of the Solar Systems Origins module and the initial development of the Data Analysis module. Content module on Dawn instruments: Framing Cameras, Visible and Infrared Spectrometer, Gamma Ray and Neutron Detector, and Gravity Science. Module includes multiple teacher guides, student activities, interactive simulations, and PowerPoint presentations as resources. The materials in this module will introduce students to the ways that scientists, engineers, and technologists “in the real world” design instrumentation that utilize the interactions between different frequencies/wavelengths of the EMR and matter to make scientific measurements and analyze data. FY 2011 Funds are for development of the module and interactive simulations. FY 2012 funds are for revisions for NASA Product Review and preparation for pilot testing.

Audience Metrics
Who is the primary audience of your program element / activity?:
Who is the secondary audience of your program element / activity?:
National Priorities and Coordination Approaches as Articulated in CoSTEM:
  • Improve STEM Instruction
What are the main impacts of your effort to date and how do they correlate to the project's goals and objectives:
Through the dissemination of high-quality and useful information, activities, and materials, the E/PO team is meeting its goals of increasing the public’s engagement, interest and understanding of the Dawn Mission.

Across the 2009–2010 and 2010–2011 reporting periods, the Dawn Mission Web site received a combined 7,076,500 hits and 2,778,173 page views. The majority of visitors across both reporting periods visited the Dawn Homepage, Mission Section: Where is Dawn Now? page, and the Mission Section: Main page. Additionally, at least 4,300 users in 2009–2010 and at least 5,000 visitors in 2010–2011 downloaded the Dawn Mission Fact Sheet. The Ion Propulsion Charges Student Reading was downloaded approximately 2,000 times during each reporting period, and the Ion Propulsion Student
Reading was downloaded approximately 1,700 to 2,000 times over each reporting period.

Across both reporting periods, visitors found the site to be a useful resource that was easy to navigate, well organized, and with accurate content. Site visitors also believed the site increased their understanding of the solar system and increased interest in Dawn Mission science content. Overall, visitors believed the site mostly met their needs and rated the overall site as good. Respondents mentioned multimedia, the Mission Overview, and the overall site as favorite site aspects. Common requests for additional information pertained to more frequent images or videos of Vesta and more frequent status updates.
Over 22,000 individuals read about Vesta Fiesta on the Dawn Mission Web site, and Vesta Fiesta events took place August 5–7, 2011 at 109 locations worldwide. Event hosts downloaded a wide variety of activity sheets as well as recruitment and presentation materials for the event. At their Vesta Fiestas, event hosts frequently reported showing PowerPoint presentations, having Vesta viewings, playing games/participating in activities, and hearing from guest speakers. Ninety-seven percent of event hosts believed the games and activities provided on the Vesta Fiesta Web site were good or excellent, and all event hosts indicated they would host a future event. In addition to the Dawn Web site and Vesta Fiesta events, the Dawn E/PO team disseminated information about Dawn through presentations at workshops and public events averaging over 250 educators/students each year. The team strategically leveraged resources by joining Discovery mission outreach providers in presenting thematic workshops that focused on cross-mission science topics.

Through the dissemination of high-quality and useful information, activities, and materials, the E/PO team is meeting its goals of increasing public access and use of Dawn materials and increasing public interest and understanding of the Dawn Mission.