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The theme of this unit is the development of an imaginary mission to the asteroid Vesta. It also introduces teachers and students to the Vesta Mappers citizen scientist project, which is part of the CosmoQuest online community. The unit is designed... (View More)

This 12-lesson unit includes inquiry-based lessons about the surface features of the Moon and the Earth and how these two worlds formed and continue to evolve. Students participate in real science as they help lunar scientists map the surface of the... (View More)

This is an activity about cause and effect. Learners will investigate various online sources to find data and other pertinent information regarding reported effects on Earth for the solar events they identified in the previous activities in this... (View More)

Audience: Elementary school, Middle school, High school
Materials Cost: Free

This is an activity about observing and mapping sunspots by direct solar observation. Learners will use a small telescope, binoculars, or a Sunspotter to create a projected image of the Sun and trace the position of any observed sunspots on a piece... (View More)

This is an activity about cause and effect. Learners will calculate the approximate travel time of each solar wind event identified in the previous activity in this set to estimate the time at which the disturbance would have left the Sun. Then,... (View More)

Audience: Elementary school, Middle school, High school
Materials Cost: Free

This is an activity about solar rotation and sunspot motion. Learners will use a sphere or ball to model the Sun and compare the observed lateral motion of sunspots to their line-of-sight motion. This is Activity 1 of the Space Weather Forecast... (View More)

This is an activity about searching online data archives for solar wind events. Learners will find at least three episodes of increased solar wind activity impacting Earth using direct measurements of solar wind velocity and density. Then, they will... (View More)

Audience: Elementary school, Middle school, High school
Materials Cost: Free

This is an activity about the period of the Sun's rotation. Learners will use image of the Sun from the SOHO spacecraft and a transparent latitude/ longitude grid called a Stonyhurst Disk to track the motion of sunspots in terms of degrees of... (View More)

Audience: Elementary school, Middle school, High school
Materials Cost: Free

This activity is about planetary climate. Once familiar with the factors that determine a planet's surface temperature, learners will use an interactive spreadsheet model of a planet's atmosphere to determine if greenhouse gases, luminosity of the... (View More)

In this activity, students pose several hypotheses for what will happen if you continue heating or supplying energy to the hot and cold planet models (Mercury, Mars, Venus, and Earth) and then test their hypotheses using a spreadsheet based... (View More)

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