This lists the logos of programs or partners of NG Education which have provided or contributed the content on this page. Program NG Live

  • Welcome aboard the first manned mission to Mars! The year is 2032.  Ahead of you lies about 45 million miles of empty space, followed by an 18-month assignment on a planet of globe spanning dust storms, average temperatures of -55°C (-70° F), and a toxic atmosphere of carbon dioxide. Produced in tandem with National Geographic Channel’s groundbreaking new miniseries MARS, students will join Space Correspondent Andrew Fazekas and prominent Mars experts for a lively conversation that offers a glimpse into the minds of the brilliant scientists and engineers who are working to take our next giant leap.

    Use the resources in this collection to prepare your students for their upcoming National Geographic Live! student matinee experience. Use the “Before the show” ideas to introduce students to MARS and the topics (space, exploration, technology, STEM education) discussed during the show. Use the “After the show” ideas to extend the learning after the event has ended.


    Before the show:

    • Have students review Andrew Fazekas’ biography using the link in the Explore More tab on this page to learn more his work with Mars.

    • Download and print the provided Martian map, to explore the areas where Andrew Fazekas works.

    • Assign students to read the provided resource NASA Provides Evidence for Possible Life on Mars for further background information on the history of Mars exploration.

    • Watch the provided video Daring Mighty Things: Curiosity Lands on Mars. Ask: What does it take to get to Mars? How do astronauts and scientists assess if Mars is habitable?

    • Engage students further with the provided lesson, Environmental Conditions in Our Solar System. Emphasize the influence of weather conditions on the ability to inhabit Mars.

    • Have students practice exploring Mars with the interactive Explore Mars, found in the Explore More tab. Ask: How have their conceptions of exploring Mars changed through these exercises? What more should we consider when attempting to live on Mars?  

    • Provide each student with a KWL Chart. Introduce the program they will attend and, who the speaker is, and offer a brief description of what the speaker’s topic(s) will be. Have students fill out the What I Know and What I Want to Know columns of the KWL Chart. Have them fill out the What I Learned column after the show.

    • Use the graphic organizer collection to select a graphic organizer to help your students organize their questions and new knowledge before, during, and after the program. For example:

      • Download and print the T Chart. Have students label the left column with Questions I Have and the right column with Answers, and then conduct research about the speaker and speaker topic ahead of the program. Have students record answers to their questions during or after the program. Have students conduct research to complete any unanswered questions for homework. Have each student share a question and answer with the class.

      • Download and print the provided Five Ws Chart. Have each student bring their copy to the matinee program and take notes. Have students share and discuss their notes after the show.

    After the Show

    • Use the Explorer Comparisons worksheet and have a class discussion to help students make connections between themselves and those setting out for Mars. Distribute the worksheet to students before the presentation and review the directions with them. Review any terms with which that they are unfamiliar with. After the presentation, have students share the notes that they took during the show. Have a class discussion about attitudes and skills and how students demonstrate them in their everyday lives. Have students record their personal examples on the worksheet.

    • Review the continents, countries, or areas that the speaker presented. Ask: What continents, countries, or areas does the speaker work in? Have younger students imagine that these places were characters in the stories shared. Ask: What role did place play in these stories? Why was location important to the story? How did the characteristics of the place influence the story? Note: You may need to introduce the concept of place for your students, before they can answer and discuss these questions.

    • Discuss and define any unfamiliar terminology that the speaker used. Ask: What vocabulary words in the video were new to you? Invite volunteers to write the words on the board, and have the class define them as a group using information they learned from the speaker or through research. If desired, have students record unfamiliar terminology during the show on one half of a T Chart. Then, have them write the definitions on the other side following this class discussion.

    • Have a class discussion about the attitudes National Geographic explorers embody. Ask: What attitudes do those exploring MARS talk about today? In what ways do they demonstrate curiosity, responsibility, empowerment, and persistence in their work? Why do you think these attitudes are important for explorers? Students can use their Five Ws Chart for reference and a graphic organizer to organize their ideas.

    • Have a whole-class brainstorm on how students can make changes or support the speakers’ work. Ask: What, if any, call to action did the speakers make? How can you implement any changes in your day-to-day life? What can we work on together as a group?

  • Term Part of Speech Definition Encyclopedic Entry
    atmosphere Noun

    layers of gases surrounding a planet or other celestial body.

    Encyclopedic Entry: atmosphere
    dust storm Noun

    weather pattern of wind blowing dust over large regions of land.

    Mars Exploration Rover Noun

    one of two robots (Spirit and Opportunity) sent by NASA to explore the surface and atmosphere of Mars.

    planet Noun

    large, spherical celestial body that regularly rotates around a star.

    Encyclopedic Entry: planet
    rover Noun

    vehicle that remotely explores a region, such as the surface of a moon, planet, or other celestial body.