Space Launch System Team Members Work with Blossomwood Elementary 5th Graders
Space Launch System (SLS) Strategic Development Manager Steve Creech, SLS Outreach Specialist Shannon Raleigh, and SLS Education Outreach Specialist Twila Schneider recently spent two days with 5th grade students in Autumn Bray’s Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Lab at Blossomwood Elementary School in Huntsville, Ala.
Creech provided the 75 students with an overview of the new SLS rocket NASA is building to take astronauts beyond Earth orbit. He also shared his personal experience in the control room at the Jet Propulsion Lab in Pasadena, Calif., when the Curiosity rover landed on Mars last August. Since the students had been studying volcanoes, Creech also shared a photograph from his October visit to Pompeii and Mount Vesuvius.
Schneider and Raleigh provided information about Mars, NASA’s ultimate destination, and talked with the students about the tallest volcano in our Solar System, Olympus Mons on Mars. The students had previously learned about Mauna Kea, the tallest volcano on Earth (if measuring from the ocean’s floor). The 5th graders were guided through the mathematics to determine a numerical comparison of the heights of the two volcanoes and then made a confectionery-inspired representation of the volcanoes.