My students are the engineers of tomorrow! I teach the 7/8 grade MESA elective class. (Mathematics, Engineering, and Science Achievement)MESA helps to encourage underrepresented groups such as minorities and women to consider futures in science/math. Students design, build and compete in various engineering projects. Our student body is 90% Hispanic and over 80% low SES on free/reduced lunch.
Our MESA students fund-raise in order to attend Astrocamp (an extended field trip that focuses on Space and NASA's explorations) each year. Many students do not get to attend. Even with fund-raising the trip is too expensive for many students.
Having a telescope at school would allow those students who had the opportunity to attend camp to come back and share their knowledge with their peers. We could organize star-gazing nights in which Astrocamp students could give small presentations and share the telescope use and viewing of the evening sky with their MESA peers.
Once all of our MESA students were knowledgable about the evening sky we could try to organize larger school-wide events and invite all students to enjoy the telescope and learn about space. We would also continue to fund-raise in order to maybe collect a few more telescopes so that we could truly offer the experience to all of our students.
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