Students Can Simulate the Search for Life Using New NASA Geology Mission Module
Grades 5-8 will enjoy the recently released Geology Mission multimedia module on the Astro-Venture Web site. Astro-Venture is an interactive, multimedia Web site in which students role-play NASA careers, as they search for and design a planet that would be habitable to humans.
After exploring what humans need to survive and why, students can engage in mission modules, which allow them to simulate how scientists search for habitable planets.
In the Astro-Venture Geology mission module, students investigate whether or not Mars and Venus have geologic characteristics that could support human life and learn about some of the methods that scientists use to search for life beyond Earth. Students gather and compare data on magnetic fields and atmospheric densities to determine how protected each planet is from space radiation.
Students also observe images of planetary surface features to draw conclusions about geologic activity on each planet. Accompanying lessons are aligned with national science and math education standards.