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Canku Ota

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(Many Paths)

An Online Newsletter Celebrating Native America


November 30, 2002 - Issue 75


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Join the NASA Team!
NASA Student Involvement Program

credits: photo from NASA Light and Shadow in the Carina Nebula
photo from NASA Light and Shadow in the Carina NebulaTeachers and students can join the NASA team by participating in the 2002-2003 NASA Student Involvement Program (NSIP). This yearís expanded national student competition was announced today with the release of materials describing six competitions for students from kindergarten through grade twelve. This year the Science and Technology Journalism competition will have a special theme, "The Wright Quest". This competition will celebrate the 100th anniversary of the historic Wright Brothers flight. Students will be able to develop print or video "articles" about aviation research or achievements past, present and future.

"This year, we really are trying to engage students of all ages, backgrounds, and interests," says Lynn Marra, the NSIP Program Manager. "NSIP offers a variety of ways that students--entire classrooms, teams or individuals--can be part of the NASA team and conduct hands-on research using some of todayís most exciting technology."

Competitions include:

  • My Planet, Earth (Grades K-4) Like NASA scientists, students explore their ever-changing neighborhoods or their school yards.
  • Watching Earth Change (Grades 5-8) Students play the role of scientist and apply space technology to better understand the changes that are happening on our dynamic planet Earth.
  • Science and Technology Journalism (Grades K-12) Students apply their communication skills to deliver news and information about aviation research and achievements.
  • Design a Mission to Mars (Grades 5-12) Students develop a research plan on how they might explore the red planet, Mars.
  • Aerospace Technology Engineering Challenge (Grades 5-8) Students are introduced to challenges of aerospace technology by building an aerospace structure.
  • Space Flight Opportunities (Grades 9-12) High School students are provided with the unique opportunity to design and fly space experiments.

Marra stresses that NSIP is more than a competition, providing an inquiry-based approach to science, mathematics, technology, and geography education. ìWe recognize that teachers are a critical link in this programÖWe have worked closely with them to make sure that NSIP enriches existing curriculum.î

Resource guides are available for educators at no cost.

All NSIP participants receive NASA certificates. Exceptional awards include Space Camp scholarships, the opportunity to fly experiments on the Space Shuttle or NASA sounding rockets, school presentations, participation at the national student symposium or student flight weeks, and an independently-funded scholarship.

For more information on NISP, visit: or call 1-800-848-8429.

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Canku Ota is a copyright © 2000, 2001, 2002 of Vicki Lockard and Paul Barry.

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