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Exploration: Then and Now – Survival! Lesson

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Astronaut Candidates Anne C. McClain and Josh A. Cassada



Grade Levels

Grades 5-8


Life Science, Space Science, Humans, Living and Working in Space, Solar System and Planets, Earth's Moon


Lesson Plans / Activities

This lesson will help your students answer the question:
What are the most essential items for the survival of settlers and explorers in new worlds?
In this lesson, students will
– Analyze and rank items based upon their importance for survival in a particular environment.
– Work as a team to come to a consensus about the importance of certain survival items.
– Compare team rankings to rankings developed by history and astronomy experts.
– Identify and compare human needs in two different exploration environments.
– Compare the differences in survival on Earth and the moon.
Survival! Lesson [2MB PDF file]
The educational module Exploration: Then and Now examines four themes and compares exploration of the past and present. The module focuses on the settlement of Jamestown, the first permanent English-speaking colony in the New World, and NASA’s plans to return to the moon and reach for Mars. Each lesson consists of several student activities.
Also in this series:
Follow the Water
Human Needs