They Might Be Giants are using data from the Kepler mission to classify the brightness changes of giant stars in an effort to understand how the observed brightness variations of giant stars may relate to the different stages of giant star evolution.
[..]Students who are given the opportunity to do "real science" generally find a greater deal of success when it comes to understanding concepts (and at a deeper level).
It was very rewarding to be able to talk with astronomers who were willing to answer my (many) questions. Educators rarely have an opportunity to talk to professionals to hone their knowledge base once they finish school. I’m afraid I grabbed them every chance I got!
It was very special to be in the room when the announcement of planet Kepler 10b (an estimated 1.4 X the size of the Earth) was discovered. I turned to my student Inga and asked, "How does it feel to be one of the first people on planet Earth to know about this discovery?" She replied, "I never thought of it like that ... it's pretty cool."