Virtual Field Trip to Space

Today our students were treated to a school-wide virtual field trip, hosted by Pacific Science Center.  Our host presenter did a fantastic job covering a wide variety of topics in the field of Astrogeology. The presentation began with an overview of land formations on earth, such as volcanoes, canyons, craters, and rivers, and contributing factors to their formation such as gas, asteroids, and erosion.

Students were then encouraged to act as astrogeologists themselves as they travelled on a virtual trip to outer space, looking for landforms on planets and moons in our solar system.  Our host used an amazing online planetarium from NASA called “NASA’S Eyes” for our space tour, which she utilized to pose many questions to students about land forms found on Mars, Saturn, Enceladus (one of Saturn’s 82 moons), Earth’s moon, and other planets.

Q:  “Did you know there are polar ice caps on Mars?  What are they made of?”
A:  “Frozen carbon dioxide.”

Q:  “Why is Mars red?”
A:  “Mars has a dust layer covering much of the planet, made of iron oxide, aka rust!”

Q:  “We see craters on Mars, but they are covered by something… what could it be?”
A:  “Material from past volcanic eruptions.”

Throughout the presentation, online students at home and in-person students in class were able to type their answers and pose their own questions to the presenter via a chat function, which allowed the presenter to quickly answer almost immediately!  It was a highly interactive way to learn about astrogeology!

We are so blessed by the ongoing support of our Parent Teacher Fellowship group, who provided the funds that allowed us to bring this engaging virtual program to our school.  It definitely piqued our students’ interest in learning more about landforms here on Earth and in space, and offers another opportunity for us to consider how God formed all of His wonderous creation!