Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Space Exploration Co-op


Our last Co-op for this school year, as always, was bittersweet. It has been such a great year of expanding friendships, prayer for each other, ongoing support and learning together. We have bonded this year at an even deeper level and each new family has added a new dimension and a new opportunity for learning from each other!


This co-op was a collaboration with another mom and it was great to use her resource ideas as well as my own! To start with the students got in pairs and did a Solar System Scavenger Hunt! This was a great idea! It got them some interesting trivia about space as well as laying a foundation of the the basics about the planets. 


We followed this up with Planet Riddles that I read aloud and the students yelled out their answers.

Next I introduced the students to Mars One. I wanted them to estimate what they thought the timeline would be for Mars One. I showed them the NASA photo of what NASA intends Mars One to look like (above). They worked in groups of two and wrote down their ideas using this timeline form. We then compared the Mars One roadmap with their timelines.



I then read this article and guided the discussion to “Is the money spent on Space worth it?” The students chose their viewpoint and were divided by about 2/3rds on the no side and 1/3rd on the yes side. They came up with a variety of arguments for both yes and no. I was impressed with their passion for their sides! We had a short mini-debate about this issue and I think both teams won!!


To finish up the morning I had the students watch this video on Humanity and Space Exploration and how the International Space Station has affected changes in humanity. I asked after the video if any of the students that voted no wanted to change their mind - they all held to their position! 


After lunch the students did a run through of Les Miserables and then performed it for us. These plays are so valuable in learning the context of a story and the timeframe! Our drama mom works very hard writing these and I understand that she has three great ones lined up for next year!! 


To finish up the year the last sports time was Ultimate Frisbee - it had been raining pretty hard at the beginning and I was impressed how these students chose to just go with it! Thanks to our sports dad who didn’t give up even with the rain!! 


Looking forward to next year!! I am sure it will be another amazing one!!