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Educational Level:
Upper elementary  
Topics/Subjects:
Motion and forces  
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The effects of gravity on near-surface objects and those in Earth orbit are explored in this activity. A brief explanation, links to three related videos, a teacher's guide and short assessment are included.

Keywords: Gravity
Audience: Elementary school, Middle school
Materials Cost: Free

Learners will investigate how lateral velocity affects the orbit of a spacecraft such as the International Space Station (ISS). Mathematical extensions are provided. This is science activity 1 of 2 found in the ISS L.A.B.S. Educator Resource Guide.

Keywords: Gravity

Learners will investigate the relationship between mass, speed, velocity, and kinetic energy in order to select the best material to be used on a space suit. They will apply an engineering design test procedure to determine impact strength of... (View More)

After creating a model of multiple volcanic lava flows, students analyze the layers, sequence the flows, and interpret the stratigraphy. Students use that same volcanic layering model to investigate relative dating and geologic mapping principles-... (View More)

This is a building-wide enrichment program consisting of a series of posters and accompanying questions designed to pique student interest in science concepts and their application to the world in which we live. Accompanying each poster is a series... (View More)

Audience: Elementary school
Materials Cost: Free per group of students

This is an activity about mission planning. Learners will use the roles of a navigation team, spacecraft, comet, Earth, and Sun to simulate how mission planners design a spacecraft/comet rendezvous. This activity requires at least four active... (View More)

In this activity, students will learn how technology can help scientists solve a problem. One of the challenges scientists face with any spacecraft is attitude control. Students will be introduced to the problem of attitude control in space through... (View More)

Learners will collaboratively design and build a descent and landing system for an egg. The students will also practice their writing skills by writing a letter or article about the success or failure of their spacecraft design. This is lesson 15 of... (View More)

In this interactive module, students can vary the comet's angle of approach to see the effect of gravity on its trajectory towards Jupiter. The speed and masses of the two bodies are held constant. The goal is for the students to understand the... (View More)

Audience: Elementary school, Middle school
Materials Cost: Free

A simple experimental apparatus made of rubber band and books is used by student teams challenged with demonstrating the concepts of friction, force, and inertia. This resource is from PUMAS - Practical Uses of Math and Science - a collection of... (View More)

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