Workshop to help teachers use space sciences to motivate students

April 27, 2007

ANN ARBOR—Former astronaut Anthony England and Roberta Johnson, a space physics researcher, will help teachers turn students on to learning at a May 22 workshop in Lansing. The Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) will host the annual Aviation/Aerospace Teacher Workshop at Lansing’s Capital City Airport.

Two University of Michigan scientists will be among the workshop speakers: Johnson, an associate research scientist at the U-M’s Space Physics Research Laboratory, is the principal developer of a new educational Web site called “Windows to the Universe.” England, professor of electrical engineering and computer science and of atmospheric, oceanic and space sciences at U-M, helped orchestrate the safe return of the crippled Apollo 13 spacecraft nearly 20 years ago and served NASA during the Apollo moon missions and aboard Spacelab II.

Sponsored in part by the Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT), the Lake Michigan Chapter of Ninety-Nines, Inc., the Michigan Aeroscience Alliance and Lansing Community College’s Aviation Technology Program, the workshop will focus on rocketry and space science. Educators at all grade levels will discover effective ways to motivate students by incorporating aviation and aerospace concepts in math, science, physics, reading, and geography.

The “Windows of the Universe” Internet site ( is designed for use in classrooms, homes, libraries and science museums. With access to more than 2,000 images, “Windows” links K-12 students to information on astrophysics, solar and space physics, planetary and lunar science and other related topics.

The day-long seminar at the Bureau of Aeronautics‘ Capital City Airport building is open to teachers, student teachers, counselors, school administrators, flight school operators and others interested in aviation education. Registration, which covers lunch and materials, is $25 per person. Space is limited. To register, contact the MDOT Bureau of Aeronautics, 2700 E. Airport Service Dr., Lansing, MI 48906-2160, or call (517) 335-9977.

Ninety-Nines, Inc. of Aeronautics