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TBLA Scholars on a Space Mission at the Space Challenger Learning Center in Hammond

"Our scholars had so much fun on their mission that they didn't focus at all on the depth of knowledge they were receiving, state Sandra Gries, STEM teacher. "I love the fact that the missions focus on problem solving."

This center offers the unique opportunity for our scholars to participate in simulated space missions, hands-on workshops, labs and planetarium experiences.

During the mission, students must accomplish specific tasks in order for the mission to be a success. Students are assigned specific duties. Some are astronauts. Some are systems analysts. Others are engineers.

Student astronauts on board the space station build space probes, monitor life support functions, conduct experiments on items taken from the surfaces of Mars or the Moon, and plot navigation courses for the spacecraft.

Engineers at Mission Control support these endeavors by answering the astronauts’ questions and providing necessary research.

One student on each team is assigned to Mission Control, while the other team member is transported to the space station. At mission midpoint, the partners exchange places so every student can experience both learning environments.

The mission TBLA scholars participated in was called Mission to Mars. Thanks to Sandra Gries who is on FIRE for Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM). We would like to thank Ms. Gries for writing a grant that funded some of the field trip.