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Paper: NASA-in-the-Classroom: Populating ND with PurpleAir Sensors
Volume: 533, ASP 2021: Sharing Best Practices – AstronomyTeaching and Public Engagement
Page: 273
Authors: McIntosh, T.; Saad, M.
Abstract: The North Dakota Space Grant Consortium (NDSGC) organized and facilitated a 15-hour virtual hands-on professional development (PD) workshop for rural and Tribal ND educators in August of 2021. The goal of the workshop was to increase participant's knowledge of atmospheric science while effectively integrating NASA lessons and resources into the classroom. Eighteen multidisciplinary K–12 and higher education participants received PurpleAir atmospheric sensors (PA-II), explored impacts of global change with NASA researchers, and developed multidisciplinary lesson plans that integrated these resources into their classrooms. No prior knowledge of atmospheric sciences was needed to participate in the workshop. Each educator received their own PA-II sensor and installed it at their home or school, creating a wide-spread network across rural ND. The workshop first introduced the technical functionality of the PA-II sensor, synchronously setting up the device and navigating the PurpleAir map and website. Participants were provided supplementary resources for asynchronous map exploration and data analysis. Keynote speakers from NASA Ames Research Center, NASA Langley Research Center, and the University of Toledo presented their research and explored how PA-II data can be integrated with other resources (i.e. GLOBE citizen science applications, fire and smoke maps, wind and pressure, NASA Data Literacy Cubes, and ND agriculture applications). The workshop concluded with classroom resources on solar system atmospheres, space-borne atmospheric missions, and ND-based educator funding opportunities. This presentation elaborates on how other organizations can replicate a virtual and hands-on atmospheric workshop using authentic STEM experiences.
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