Elementary, Secondary, and Informal Education — Stardust: Our Search for Origins (A Travelling Exhibition)

August 1st, 2002 - January 31st, 2007 | PROJECT

The Space Science Institute (SSI) seeks to develop the "Stardust Project," designed to introduce the public to concepts related to the birth of stars, the search for planets beyond our solar system and the search for life beyond earth. The project's three components include a 2,500 square-foot travelling exhibition called "Stardust: Our Search for Origins;" a comprehensive education program for museum staff and grades 4-9 school teachers and a public Web site that incorporates and builds on the exhibit and education content. The project proposes to assemble standards-based educational materials for dissemination through workshops conducted at museums that host the exhibit. The educational programs -- particularly professional development workshops for teachers -- target, among other groups, underserved Native American and Hispanic teachers associated with a partnership between SSI and the NSF Rural Systematic Initiatives in the American West. The project is built around strong partnerships with two NASA Origins Program missions and with established informal education institutions including the New York Hall of Science, the Lawrence Hall of Science, the Denver Museum of Nature and Science, TERC and the SETI Institute. Its goals are to make it possible for teachers, students and the public to learn about: The formation of stars, planets, and the solar system; The conditions necessary for life; The effect of life on Earth's environment; The methods used to detect planets orbiting distant stars and The scientific tools used in origin research -- from space-based telescopes to microscopes.

Project Website(s)

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Project Products


Team Members

Paul Dusenbery, Principal Investigator, Space Science Institute


Funding Source: NSF
Funding Program: ISE/AISL
Award Number: 0125762
Funding Amount: 1222278


Access and Inclusion: English Language Learners | Ethnic | Racial | Hispanic | Latinx Communities | Indigenous and Tribal Communities | Rural
Audience: Educators | Teachers | General Public | Museum | ISE Professionals
Discipline: Space science
Resource Type: Project Descriptions
Environment Type: Exhibitions | Media and Technology | Museum and Science Center Exhibits | Professional Development | Conferences | Networks | Professional Development and Workshops | Websites | Mobile Apps | Online Media