- - Tuesday, April 12, 2011


Space shuttles get new homes

CAPE CANAVERAL | NASA’s three remaining space shuttles will go to Cape Canaveral, Los Angeles and suburban Washington when the program ends this summer, the space agency said Tuesday.

The announcement came on the 30th anniversary of the first space-shuttle flight and the 50th anniversary of man’s first journey into space.

Shuttle Atlantis will stay in Cape Canaveral at the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex, just miles from the pair of launchpads where it was shot into space. Endeavour is headed to the California Science Center, miles from the plant where the shuttle was built; and Discovery’s new home will be the National Air and Space Museum’s Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly.

The Smithsonian is giving up the prototype Enterprise, which NASA said Tuesday will go to New York City’s Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum. Enterprise was used for test flights in the 1970s.


Kindergartners to get iPads in fall

PORTLAND | Kindergarten is supplementing crayons, finger paints and flashcards with iPads, a development that excites supporters but that detractors worry is wasted on pupils too young to appreciate the expense.

Next fall, nearly 300 kindergartners in the central Maine city of Auburn will become the latest batch of youngsters around the country to get iPad2 touch pad tablets to learn the basics about ABCs, 1-2-3s, drawing and music.

The iPad is a powerful education tool with hundreds of teaching applications, said Superintendent Tom Morrill. With its touch pad screen, it’s simple to use and can bring learning to life with imagery and sounds, he said.

The $200,000 that Mr. Morrill is proposing to spend on iPads — which retail for around $500 — might be better spent on some other school program, said Sue Millard of Auburn, who has children in the fourth grade and high school. She also questions whether kindergartners are old enough to appreciate the effort.

Maine was the first state to equip students statewide with computers when it distributed Apple laptops to all seventh- and eighth-graders in 2002. The program has since expanded, with laptops parceled out to about 50 percent of high school students.


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