2010 Annual Science Report

Georgia Institute of Technology Reporting  |  SEP 2009 – AUG 2010

EPO Activity: Astrobiology Workshop for High School Biology Teachers

Project Progress

Hands-on astrobiology activities were introduced to ten high school Biology teachers involved in the Rockdale- Newton County Math and Science Teachers Enhancing Rigor for Students (M.A.S.T.E.R.S) Program funded by the Georgia Department of Education. In Rockdale County, 57% of the students are African American, 10% Hispanic, 28% white, 3% Asian and 3% multiracial. Additionally, 55% of the students are economically disadvantaged and receive free or reduced lunch. The program directly impacts nearly 7,200 middle and high school student each year. The Georgia Tech Team supported a biology graduate student to deliver the two day astrobiology focused workshop which included a lecture by Dr. Terry Snell via the astrobiology self directed course on NASA’s electronic professional development network (Figure 1) and an introduction to eukaryotic extremophiles by investigating rotifers and their response to desiccation.