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Successful explorations of Mars with rovers (like Spirit, Opportunity, and Curiosity) has enhanced interest from students in space exploration. This activity helps inform Ss about the scientific rationale behind drilling different rocks on Mars to determine their compositions, and comparing their interior and exterior surfaces, similar to the way that geologists do on Earth. Using various types of fig newton cookies to represent different types of rocks, and pretzel sticks to represent a Rock Abrasion and Brushing Bit (RAbBit), Ss can participate in a inexpensive, easy to do, and tasty exercise to understand the how and why of RAbBit operations on the Moon and Mars.
It is in Microsoft Word .doc form so that Ts can customize the discussion to fit the needs of their Ss.
These activities are classroom tested to help students with the following Florida Next Generation Sunshine State Standards in Science:
Students Will Be Able To (SWBAT/I Can):
• Identify patterns within the rock cycle and relate them to surface and subsurface events
• examine a simulated Martian surface core sample.
• learn how an unknown sample can be identified by matching it with a known sample.
• discover how surface samples can tell us about the history and make-up of Mars.
• consume the core sample at the end of the exercise [BE ALERT TO STUDENT’S FOOD ALLERGY WARNINGS! Products may contain nut and other allergens].
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