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Physical sciences  
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Instructor guide/manual  
Instructional Strategies:
Generating and testing hypotheses  
SMD Forum - Primary:
Planetary Science  
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Each lesson or activity in this toolkit is related to NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO). The toolkit is designed so that each lesson can be done independently, or combined and taught in a sequence. The Teacher Implementation Guide provides... (View More)

Learners will model the gravitational fields of planets on a flexible surface. Children place and move balls of different sizes and densities on a plastic sheet to develop a mental picture of how the mass of an object influences how much effect it... (View More)

Keywords: Jupiter; Gravity

Learners will observe ice melting and freezing under a variety of conditions and relate that to the Messenger mission. This is lesson 1 of 12 in Exploring Ice in the Solar System.

Audience: Pre-kindergarten, Elementary school
Materials Cost: Free

This is a lesson about the particulate nature of matter. Learners will use their bodies to model the connections between molecules in the three states of matter. They then create a poster that illustrates and explains these connections. The lesson... (View More)

Audience: Middle school

This is a lesson about measuring temperature. Learners will apply their knowledge of how temperature affects matter to understand how a thermometer works. They then read about the history of the thermometer and the temperature scales that make the... (View More)

Audience: Middle school

Learners will use the inquiry process to explore the affect of atmosphere on the temperature of a planet. They create a model of the system to test. They then create a concept map of the planetary temperature system. The lesson models scientific... (View More)

Audience: Middle school

Learners will explore the conditions required for water to be in a liquid state. They discover that temperature is the essential variable. They then explore how temperature is not a measure of heat but of the average motion of molecules of a... (View More)

Audience: Middle school

Learners will explore the conditions required for water to be in a liquid state. They discover that temperature is the essential variable. They then explore how temperature affects the motion of molecules and molecular bonds. The lesson models... (View More)

Audience: Middle school

This is a design challenge about heat transfer and insulation. Learners will apply the scientific method to design and build a container that will keep items cool when placed in boiling water. They will practice collaboration in team-building and in... (View More)

Audience: High school
Materials Cost: Over $20 per group of students

This is a lesson about designing and building an effective sunshade for a model MESSENGER craft. Learners will build a model of MESSENGER. They will use a scientific approach to solve problems and work as a cooperative team. They will discover their... (View More)

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