HISD GT students visit Scobee Education Center

HISD GT students visit Scobee Education Center
Posted on 03/09/2018

Harlandale ISD’s Gifted and Talented Department recently sponsored a trip for all sixth-grade GT students to the Scobee Education Center, located at San Antonio College.

During their visit, students had the opportunity to explore the Challenger Learning Center, which features an interactive computer simulator that “transports” students to a high-tech Mission Control Room and Space Station.

“The focus of this trip was to simulate a mission to Mars approximately 50 years in the future called Expedition Mars,” Harlandale ISD GT/STEM Facilitator Charles Hernandez said. “Our students got a glimpse of what might lie ahead for them should they choose a career working for NASA or another STEM-related industry.”

One component of the experience was that the students were tasked with creating a graphic design that would serve as the patch for their mission.  The winner of the graphic design competition was Harlandale MS student Juan Trujillo.  His patch represented the entire district’s mission to Mars.

Once there, the middle school students were assigned various job assignments such as Remote Operated Vehicle Team, Medical Team and Biology Team.  Their collective objective was to conduct a hydrological survey of the planet Mars. They were also able to ask and answer tough questions related to their field of expertise while they were on their individual teams.

Another benefit of this experience was that the children were able to see the importance of collaboration in a setting outside of the classroom. 

“This most certainly was a relatable real-world experience that focused on the tenets of the 21st Century skills needed in tomorrow’s work force,” Hernandez added. “Our students were in awe of the facility and many seemed to be convinced that they would love to have a future working for NASA, and who knows, maybe one of our students may be a future Martian.”


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