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June 2006 updates for Ms. Weehler

Published: June 15, 2006

Ms. Weehler will be meeting in Pasadena July 6-12 to work with the data analysis for Round 2. She is planning lessons for the Fall that her students can follow in their Science Research and Design class. Her students started getting ready at the end of the year by going through the Sofia kit activities. Once school starts they will

  • be assigned some activities from the "Star Light Star Bright" Heasarc website to understand black bodies, and from Cool Cosmos.
  • Study star formation and life cycles with college textbook (for non-majors) Cosmic Perspective.
  • Use the Student Handbook to get to know MaximDL and what it can do
  • work on SEDs
  • work on color-color plots using Microsoft Excel
  • Start to work with the data analysis
  • Participate in writing results?

Ms. Weehler and her student were interviewed by Texas Public Radio for a 6 minute interview that aired locally on April 28, 2006 on the program "Morning Edition." Estimated audience: this Public Radio station broadcasts in a market that includes the 8th largest city in the nation, San Antonio, so potentially quite a large audience. In fact, Ms. Weehler has been interviewed by an education student for a class assignment due to the publicity. Due to the press release generated by Gordon Squires and Linda Vu she received a call from the San Antonio Express News newspaper (the largest newspaper in this market that includes the 8th largest city) to do a feature article on the program and students this summer. They decided not to do the story when Ms. Weehler decided not to bring students to Pasadena this summer, but she will stay in contact with them for a potential story this school year.

This program has affected Ms. Weehler's students in two ways:

  • All of them are aware of the research because Ms. Weehler gives them updates as the program evolves, and they are very interested in it. Students not in her classes have been asking their teachers about it because we put up a display in the front lobby of the school.
  • My one Spitzer student from last year considered it a highlight of her Senior year. Being a special education student, she became comfortable with the knowledge that she can do advanced work (something she noted she had never been offered before) and that being dyslexic doesn't equate to lack of intelligence. "It was a bet on both of our parts that she could do this, and she was extremely capable. I'm so proud of her!"

Dr. Giovanni Fazio, the developer of the IRAC camera we used in our research, spoke at his old alma mater, St. Mary's University, and Ms. Weehler took two students to hear him. "We introduced ourselves and he was delighted that his camera was being used by high school students." Ms. Weehler has three potential students this year who will be working, like last year, in a "stacked" class as an independent study, with Ms. Weehler as facilitator at the same time she is teaching a Chemistry class.

The 2023 NITARP application is now available! Go here for the instructions. Applications are due by 3pm Pacific time, Monday Sep 12, 2022. (NOTE: we do not yet know if we will be permitted to travel to the AAS!)