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Overview Lessons & Materials Pre Mission Prep. Mission Day Assessment

Mission Day

Mission Day

Communications Center

Data Answer Key

Mission Day Tips

Post Brief Questions

Tips for A Successful Mission  

Below is a list of teacher tips to help you make the most of your Space Station Alpha e-Mission experience.

A. e-Mission: Space Station Alpha—program

  • A minimum of four 45-minute class periods are recommended for the entire program. Students familiar with the background material fly the best missions.

B. During Pre-Mission Preparation (Lessons 13 and 14)

  • After you have divided your class into teams, have every student practice the calculations required to complete the tables and graphs. Every team has a set of practice data that students can use to practice making calculations. This exercise increases the students’ comfort and confidence. During the mission itself, the data comes regularly at 5 minute intervals. Your students need to be able to calculate quickly and accurately.
  • Have all students graph the practice data. This is important. The students learn what the data means. Graphs let them visualize what is taking place.
  • Using a straightedge and pencil, have the students transfer the critical condition levels specified in the team reference guides to their graphs.
  • The students must become familiar with the data report form so that they know what they will be reporting to Mission Control.
  • Do a test link-up with the Challenger Learning Center® Mission Control. Make sure you will have the best possible connection for mission day.

C. Mission Day

  • Make sure ALL forms required during the mission (report forms, diagrams, data slips, graphs, table tents, etc.) are copied and ready to go before the students arrive in the classroom.
  • Use a different color paper for each team’s report forms. This will help the Communications Team distinguish each team.
  • Follow classroom set-up instructions for the number of students in your class.

D. Communications Team

  • This team can function with two students. One student is the primary communicator, the Communications Officer, who speaks with the Flight Director via a microphone. The data officer types the data into the data board and communicates through the chat window.
  • The Communications Officer will be responsible for receiving all the messages and categorizing each according to its priority level. He or she will verbally communicate all information to Mission Control, and then turn it over to the Data Officer. Finally, he or she is responsible for getting the attention of specific teams or the entire group when asked to do so by Mission Control. The Communications Officer must be able to “work the room,” motivate the Crisis Management Team members, and make sure that Mission Control is receiving a steady supply of information.
  • Select an outgoing person to be the Communications Officer. This person needs to be comfortable with the sound of his or her own voice because he or she will be talking the whole time.
  • The Data Officers, student(s) in charge of the data/chat window, need to be fairly adept at typing. A lot of numbers will be typed, and speed and accuracy are important.
  • The Data Officer needs to be fairly adept at typing. A lot of numbers will be typed, and speed and accuracy are important.

E. Radiation Team

  • The Radiation Team needs to pay close attention to the differences in the readings from the two TEPCs on board. This will indicate whether or not the team’s shielding recommendations are effective.

F. Life Support Team

  • The Life Support Team tracks the oxygen and carbon dioxide levels on board the Space Station Alpha. They graph the data and look for critical conditions.

G. Crisis Management Team

  • The Crisis Management Team should have worked through the same pre-mission preparations; calculations, graphs, and tables in order to understand the data.
  • The Crisis Management Team will receive power reading and battery levels.
  • Have a large diagram of Space Station Alpha located where the whole class can see it. There should also be a chalkboard, flip chart, or white board where the Crisis Manager can record the current status of the space station. Here's an example:

    Team Time Alert Problem Possible Solutions
    Radiation UTC 17:20 Level One Stationary TEPC showing lethal ranges Move astronauts

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