Real World, Real Science (RWRS) is a NASA-funded project that enables students to explore the relationship between weather and climate with significant emphasis on the use of NASA data in highly engaging ways. This five-year project harnesses an extraordinary team of collaborators, including EDC and the AAALab at Stanford University, to deliver NASA’s substantial earth system data assets into the hands of middle school students and educators in both informal and formal education environments. We are developing a suite of flexible interactive technology modules that translate NASA’s atmosphere and ocean data sets into highly engaging science and mathematics learning experiences that bridge informal and formal education settings.
Through RWRS, learners will engage with a rich array of science and mathematics as they consider the distinctions between weather and climate, climatic and ecological trends, and the ways human activity intersects with natural systems. These interactive experiences will be complemented by activities designed for the classroom that use the breadth of NASA data assets to explore global processes and their local implications.
RWRS will result in a new program for the LabVenture! experience at GMRI, and an essential component of the project is to understand, and create a model for, how educational materials developed at GMRI can be extensible to other locations and learning environments. Educators and their students will be empowered to customize and localize the program to their regional experience of weather and climate, and we will pilot this in partner science centers, including the Maine Discovery Museum and the Montshire Museum of Science, and in classrooms.