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The Great Mars Debate

photo of mars surface
photo of mars surface
photo of mars surface
photo of mars surface

February 5 - February 9, 2001

Forum 2/5 - 2/9
Live Webcast 2/9 10:00 a.m. PT / 1:00 p.m. ET

 

[Overview]

[Educational Objectives and Standards]

[Supporting Educational Material]

[How to Participate]

[See the Video Interviews NOW]

[View the Archived Webcast]

[Read the Archived Debate]

 


Educational Objectives and Standards

Educational Objectives

National Education Standards

Evaluation of Objectives

1. Students will choose a Mars landing site that they believe would best answer scientist’s scientific questions.

NSES A1, A2, D4, D5

ISTE 3, 5, 6

 

  • Create a class Prediction Tree of the scientific question(s) to be answered by the site as the trunk, each selected site with the reason chosen as branches and multiple pieces of evidence that support each site as leaves coming off the branch they support.

2. Students will use evidence, logically consistent arguments, scientific observations of similar features on Earth to identify cause and effect relationships and to support their selection of a Mars landing site in an online forum.

NSES A1, A2, D4, D5

ISTE 3, 4, 5, 6

NSES E2

  • Create a class Prediction Tree of the scientific question(s) to be answered by the site as the trunk, each selected site with the reason chosen as branches and multiple pieces of evidence that support each site as leaves coming off the branch they support.
  • Post the chosen site and reasoning in the online forum.

3. Students will use an online forum to ask questions and query other students’ explanations of their selected Mars landing sites. They will compare evidence, identify faulty reasoning, point out statements that go beyond evidence and suggest alternative explanations for the same observations.

NSES A1, A2,

ISTE 3, 4, 5, 6

  • Choose one explanation of a chosen site posted by someone else that you disagree with. Design questions and arguments to clarify parts you found confusing or to point out explanations that are not logical or go beyond evidence or suggest alternative explanations for the same observations. Post your argument in the online forum.
  • Create a T-Chart comparing 2 of the most popular sites and the reasons to choose each. Write an explanatory paragraph describing the better site with at least three supporting pieces of evidence to choose that site.

 

 
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