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LPI Earth and Space Science Newsletter

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August 21, 2017 Total Solar Eclipse visible across the US

September 15, 2017 Cassini plunges into Saturn's Atmosphere


Educator Science Educator Symposium
Participate in an Educator Symposium featuring several short sessions led by teams of industry professionals and educators at the 2017 AAPG Annual Convention and Exhibition, Sunday, April 2, 2017 (9:00 am to 3:45 pm). Stipends and AAPG Convention and Exhibition Registration are available for a limited number of (60) participants.

Earth Science Educator Field Trip
Sign up for an Earth Science Educator Field Trip at the 2017 AAPG Annual Convention and Exhibition, Saturday, April 1, 2017 (8am-2pm). Work with Dr. Erik Scott of E&P Geoscience, LLC, and other geoscientists to experience the dynamic nature of river systems while investigating the morphology and sedimentology of Panther Creek, Montgomery County. Stipends and AAPG Convention and Exhibition Registration are available for a limited number of participants.

Earth Science Educator Field Trip
Sign up for an Earth Science Educator Field Trip at the 2017 AAPG Annual Convention and Exhibition, Saturday, April 1, 2017 (8am-5pm). Join Dr. Shuhab Khan of the University of Houston and other geoscientists to collect and interpret Ground Penetrating Radar data in real time in several Houston-area locations. Stipends and AAPG Convention and Exhibition Registration are available for a limited number of participants.

McDonald Observatory Teacher Workshops
McDonald Observatory is now accepting applications for the 2017 Summer Teacher Professional Development Workshops for K-12 educators. Receive at least 20 hours of Continuing Education Credit, meet astronomers, and practice new astronomy skills under the Observatory’s dark skies. Deadline for applications is February 6, 2017.

Greater Houston STEM Conference
"New Horizons and Innovations in STEM" will be Saturday, March 4, 2017 at the University of Houston --Clear Lake. Proposals to present are being accepted through Jan. 31.

LiftOff 2017: Starry Night
This weeklong aerospace workshop emphasizes STEM learning experiences by incorporating a space science theme supported by NASA missions. Teacher participants are provided with information and experiences through speakers, hands-on activities and field investigations that promote space science and enrichment activities for themselves and others. Free to Texas participants. Application deadline: April 14, 2017


Total Solar Eclipse
On Aug. 21, 2017, the moon will pass between Earth and the sun, creating a total solar eclipse visible along a narrow path stretching across the continental United States. The NASA eclipse page lists events, activities, inofrmation about the science, and more.

AAPG Conference and Exhibition
The American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG) invites middle and high school teachers to help celebrate its 100th anniversary; the conference will be in Houston April 1-4, 2017, and teachers can attend at reduced rates. More details and final agenda coming soon.


100th AAPG Anniversary
Middle-school, high-school, and community college instructors who are teaching Earth science and related topics are invited to participate in the Earth Science Educator Program of the American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG) 100th Annual Convention & Exhibition (ACE) at the George R. Brown Convention Center on April 2-5, 2017. Science Coordinators and Directors, as well as pre-service students preparing for teaching Earth science and related topics in grades 6-14, also are invited to participate!

Future Engineers Mars Medical Challenge
Students ages 5-19 are invited to design a 3-D model that could be used by astronauts on a future mission to Mars. Students have the opportunity to win prizes ranging from a Mars prize pack or a 3-D printer for their school to a trip to Houston for a tour of NASA's Johnson Space Center. The challenge closes on Jan. 25, 2017, and winners will be announced on March 28, 2017.

Ozone Theater - Free Education Program for Houston
Three age-appropriate curricula are aligned to the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) objectives in science, health, language arts, and fine arts. Book Ozone Theater free for your Houston elementary and middle school students today!

Bright Schools Competition
Engage middle school students in science, technology, engineering, and math with the Bright Schools Competition. Students in grades 6-8 will select a topic related to light and sleep and select one of three exploration options (developing a prototype, creating an awareness campaign or writing a research proposal) to create an original project. Submission Deadline 02/10/2017

Fly Your Exoplanet on the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite
Set to launch in June 2018, the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite is an explorer-class planet finder. In the first-ever spaceborne all-sky transit survey, TESS will identify planets ranging from Earth-sized to gas giants. As the TESS team prepares for launch, it invites the public to ponder what exoplanets might look like and share their ideas in the form of sketches and graphics.


Shell Science Lab Challenge
The Shell Science Lab Challenge offers you a chance to compete to win a school science lab makeover, valued at $20,000, by sharing your creative approach. Middle and high school science teachers (grades 6-12) in the United States and Canada are encouraged to apply. The deadline for submissions is January 23, 2017.


Free Sea Level App
Polar Explorer: Sea Level is a new climate change education app that focuses on sea level rise and its consequences; users can determine where sea level is changing right now, or what places around the world are at risk from storm surge.

New "Explore NASA Science" Website
Explore the redesigned NASA Science website and learn about new discoveries, sign up for the newsletter, and much more!

Revised Seasons Activities
In "Heating Things Up," students graph average high monthly temperatures for different cities to learn how temperatures vary by location and by season. In the revised version of "Daylight Hours" students analyze graphs of the daylight hours of mystery cities to match them to specific cities.

Graphing Lunar Phases
This activity, developed by teacher Ashley White and revised by LPI, provides graphs and data for the percentage of the Moon that is illuminated.
Modified from

Fall 2016 Universe in the Classroom Edition is now available!
In this edition of The Universe in the Classroom, learn about a storyline approach to teaching about eclipses, including investigations into lunar phases, the size and scale of the Earth-Moon system, why eclipses happen, and the pattern and frequency of their occurrence.


Arctic Warming Twice as Fast as Global Average
The annual Arctic Report Card indicates that high temperatures have shattered records in the Arctic in 2016, and warming continues to bring stark changes to the region. The average annual air temperature over land areas in the Arctic region this year reached its highest point in the observational record, a 3.5°C increase since 1900.

Mars Ice Holds as Much Water as Lake Superior
Scientists using data from the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter have used radar to measure the deposits of ice beneath Mars's mid-northern latitudes. The depost ranges from 260 to 560 feet thick, and is 50 to 85% water ice. This is comparable to the amount of water in Lake Superior. The ice is close enough to the surface to potentially be a resource for future astronauts.

New Ceres Views as Dawn Moves Higher
View NASA's Dawn spacecraft new images of the brightest spot on the dwarf planet Ceres.

New Insights into Global Warming
A new study of the temporary slowdown in the global average surface temperature warming trend observed between 1998 and 2013 concludes the phenomenon represented a redistribution of energy within the Earth system, with Earth's ocean absorbing the extra heat.