A virtual space mission allowed students to blast off exploring the Moon and Mars with the make believe technology of 2080.

A Virtual Space MissionBen Franklin Elementary School fourth graders divided into teams specializing in communications, navigation, cargo, and transmission.  What was their mission? A Skype conversation with NASA Commander Carrie Rydeh revealed that a spacecraft was missing within the solar system and they had to track it down.

The point of this mission was to have students pay math and science problem solving skills.

Northrop Grumman  funded the project with a grant. Materials were provided by the Challenger Learning Center of Colorado. The project, titled “Moon, Mars, and Beyond” allowed students to plot graphs, decode secret messages, and perform calculations.

“After the learning curve of the mission it was bing, bing, bing,” said teacher Terry Morris.

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