Plans are in place for the annual event we started last year – Mars Day.
This is one way to get students all fired up about astronomy, and the science of discovering what’s out there in space.
My students, which means from K through 6th grade (27 classes in all) have been showing tremendous interest in science. Since I started out by incorporating robotics and space into my computer class, the Mars connection seem to fit like a glove. After all, rocket launches, monitoring and navigating spacecraft, and even peering into space via satellites and the Hubble telescope, is nothing without a small army of computer-savvy people behind this.
Mars Day is sort of like peeling back the curtain of humankind’s fascination with the red planet, and helping students make the connection between why they have a computer lab. It is convenient, as I have said before, that the Curiosity Rover, which is one of the most complex robots ever built, is essentially a computer and a science lab on wheels.
Also appearing at this year’s Mars Day is Commander John Herrington. You may have heard of him in passing. He was the first Native American Astronaut in space!
For my kids on the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Reservation, this is a huge opportunity.