Contact: Harri Vanhala, email@example.com
WASHINGTON, D.C.-- Teachers from across the U.S. are invited to apply to become Educator Fellows for NASA's MESSENGER mission to Mercury. The 30 master teachers chosen for the program will receive special training to help them conduct teacher training workshops featuring lessons for grades pre-K to 12 developed in support of the mission.
MESSENGER (which is an acronym for MErcury Surface, Space ENvironment, GEochemistry, and Ranging) will be the first spacecraft ever to orbit the planet Mercury. It was launched in 2004 and flew past Mercury three times in 2008 and 2009, sending back the first pictures of a previously unseen side of the planet. In March 2011, MESSENGER will go into orbit around Mercury and begin a comprehensive year-long study of the planet.
MESSENGER Principal Investigator Sean Solomon, of the Carnegie Institution of Washington, says: "Our Educator Fellowship Program greatly expands the reach of the MESSENGER Education and Public Outreach Team. Many of our Fellows have participated in major mission events, such as the Mercury flybys, and all have become enthusiastic and well-informed ambassadors for our mission and for the nation’s space program more generally."
The MESSENGER Educator Fellowship Program, which is managed by Tides project the National Center for Earth and Space Science Education, is designed to provide teachers and school districts with exceptional educational materials and professional development strongly tied to the space science curriculum, as well as to inspire the next generation of America’s scientists and engineers through NASA missions. Since the program's inception in 2003, more than 14,000 educators across the nation have been trained by the Fellows.
The Fellows selected for the program will receive a five-day training workshop in Washington, D.C., business cards that identify them as a MESSENGER Educator Fellow, copies of lessons, a how-to manual on conducting effective teacher training workshops, online resources to promote the workshops, and other NASA resources. In return, Fellows commit to conducting teacher training workshops that reach a minimum of 100 teachers per year for two years.
Practicing teachers and teacher trainers in both formal and informal education settings are encouraged to apply. Access the application materials at http://messenger-education.org/teachers/ao.php.
The deadline for applications is April 10, 2010.