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Instructional Strategies:
Nonlinguistic representations  
SMD Forum - Primary:
Astrophysics  
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This simple exercise demonstrates how Maya numbers are written and how higher place values of numbers are calculated. This activity can also be used in informal education settings with people ages 9 through adult. Includes information for educators,... (View More)

This lesson provides a way for students to determine the relationship between the distance from a light source and its brightness. Once students discover the relationship, they can begin to understand how astronomers use this knowledge to determine... (View More)

Students are introduced to the basic properties, behavior and detection of black holes through a brief discussion of common conceptions and misconceptions of these exciting objects. They "act out" a way black holes might be detected through their... (View More)

This paper model of the Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope includes three pages of parts that can be cut out and assembled using common household items. It also provides a short description of the scientific instruments on board Fermi, as well as links... (View More)

Audience: Informal education
Materials Cost: 1 cent - $1 per student

This 28-page coloring and activity book includes general information on X-ray astronomy, Chandra and the STS-93 mission. It also looks at black holes, supernovas, galaxy clusters and more. Each image is accompanied by a summary of information.... (View More)

Audience: Informal education
Materials Cost: Free

In this activity, students will interpret and analyze the information presented on the Evidence for Hidden Mass graph. They will observe trends in the graphs, and use it to determine if there is evidence for hidden mass. This is Activity 6b in the... (View More)

In this activity, students will model the time after the Big Bang when the first nuclei of hydrogen and helium were created. The students will move and display cards that show the elements that are formed. This activity requires a large area - e.g.,... (View More)

Audience: High school
Materials Cost: Free

Traditionally, spectral images are two dimensional, and related to text. This kinesthetic activity has groups of students position themselves along a printed spectrum to make spectral patterns and model various elements. Includes photos, teachers... (View More)

One of the greatest mysteries of all is what causes gamma ray bursts. These bursts are the most powerful explosions in the Universe and occur about once a day. Their origin is unknown, although there are several theories. Students learn about NASA's... (View More)

Audience: Middle school

In this activity, students simulate how light collected from a space object converts into binary data and reconverts into an image of the object. A pencil and paper activity demonstrates how astronomical spacecraft and computers create images of... (View More)

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