Lesson: Armageddon: Fact or Fantasy?

Objectives 
Students will: 

Discuss the "reality" of the dangers of asteroids like in the movie Armaggedon.
Begin to learn about "objects that fall to earth from the sky" 

Procedures 
Show a clip from Armegeddon (or some reference to the movie) that focuses on the main theme of the movie: mainly, that a major asteroid is on a collision  course with the earth and there is a need to do something about it. How real is the threat? If so, what evidence is there? 
For more on the movie see http://us.imdb.com/Title?0120591

Questions to explore and research 

  1. What kinds of objects have entered or hit our earth from space before? 
  2. What are meteorites and have they struck the earth before? Show example: August 31st, 1991 event in Noblesville, Indiana where Brodie and Brian, two 13 year olds had a close encounter with a meteorite strike. (See page 1.1 Lesson 1 - Noblesville Fall - "Exploring Meteorite Mysteries" available at http://www-curator.jsc.nasa.gov/outreach1/expmetmys/expmetmys.htm as a PDF file. )
  3. What evidence is there of objects hurtling from space that have caused any significant damage? 


Assignment 
Have your class make a list of 10 reasons why we earthlings should worry about "rocks falling from the sky". Use the schools library to find books or use the Web for your research.  Please send results to your project coordinator, Ihor Charischak at icharisc@stevens-tech.edu  He will post your lists on the web.
 
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