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Katherine Johnson. A Lifetime of STEM

Use this video for introductory visuals for phases of inquiry-based learning. Bring the Hidden Figures film in the classroom and discuss equal rights in terms of gender, race, age etc.


What is it about ?

Katherine Johnson worked at NASA’s Langley Research in Hampton, Va., being the first afro-american woman who took part in the calculation of the trajectory for space voyages. She is one of the characters in the Oscar-nominated ‘Hidden Figures’ a docudrama that is more than 50 years overdue, starting her career in segregation era America and facing discrimination at home, at school and at work. ’Hidden Figures’ is an educational requirement at the middle school, high school, and college levels and especially for those preparing for STEM professions.

How to use it ?

The movie has to be watched as homework (use the teaching material: “Hidden Figures”. It can help to flip the classroom by having students discuss it the next day, freeing up class time for clarifications of new ideas. It helps students make real world connections. Pre-watching activities: – Before watching the students are given worksheets with some questions referring to women in science 50 years ago. Can they give some examples? – In class discussions can include qs such as: – What does the context of the movie suggest? – Have you heard about these women involvement in space program? – Which are the life-lessons found in this movie? – Which are Katherine Johnson’s life lessons?

Resource Language


Teaching Activity

Teaching preparation



Teaching Level

Discrimination Ground