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Learning Activity: Investigating aerospace careers

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(CNN Student News) -- Students will learn about different career opportunities within the aerospace field.


One of the main goals of the Northrop Grumman Weightless Flights of Discovery program is 'to provide teachers with tools and experiences that they can use to inspire their students to pursue technical and scientific careers related to space exploration." Use this opportunity to have students investigate the field of aerospace technology. Direct your students to online resources to identify the different types of jobs associated with this field, including:

  • planetary astronomy,
  • biology,
  • chemistry,
  • astrophysics,
  • robotic engineering,
  • computer science, and
  • mathematics.
  • Instruct students to list their findings on the board, and ask each student to select a different job from the list. Next, have students conduct research to learn about the different job responsibilities and educational requirements associated with their chosen positions. If possible, encourage students to interview professionals working in these positions to learn about the evolution and highlights of their careers. Have students prepare and deliver oral presentations of their findings to the class. Following the presentations, ask students: What do you think can be done to inspire young people to pursue careers in the aerospace field?

    Note: Encourage students who express an interest in pursuing careers in the aerospace field to seek additional information from your school's guidance department.

    Curriculum Connections


    Standard 13. Understands the scientific enterprise

    Level III [Grade: 6-8]

    Benchmark 1. Knows that people of all backgrounds and with diverse interests, talents, qualities, and motivations engage in fields of science and engineering; some of these people work in teams and others work alone, but all communicate extensively with others

    Benchmark 3. Knows various settings in which scientists and engineers may work (e.g., colleges and universities, businesses and industries, research institutes, government agencies)

    Level IV [Grade: 9-12]

    Benchmark 2. Understands that individuals and teams contribute to science and engineering at different levels of complexity (e.g., an individual may conduct basic field studies; hundreds of people may work together on a major scientific question or technological problem)

    Benchmark 6. Knows that creativity, imagination, and a good knowledge base are all required in the work of science and engineering

    McREL: Content Knowledge: A Compendium of Standards and Benchmarks for K-12 Education (Copyright 2000 McREL) is published online by Mid-continent Research for Education and Learning (McREL) ( link), 2550 S. Parker Road, Suite 500, Aurora, CO 80014


    Northrop Grumman Weightless Flights of Discovery program, science, math, engineering, astronomy, aerospace, careers, jobs



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