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Learning Time:
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Learners and their families are encouraged to go outside on a clear evening and view the sky to see the planets for themselves. Using sky charts and other resources, and possibly in partnership with a local astronomical society, children navigate... (View More)

This is an activity about the interiors of planets. Leaners will investigate the composition of unseen materials using a variety of tools - a process that mimics how scientists discover clues about the interiors of planets with cameras and other... (View More)

Keywords: Jupiter

Learners will weigh themselves on scales modified to represent their weights on other worlds to explore the concept of gravity and its relationship to weight. They consider how their weights would be the highest of all the planets while standing on... (View More)

Keywords: Jupiter; Mass; Weight

This is a demonstration about the density of the planets. Learners will compare the relative sizes and masses of scale models of the planets as represented by fruits and other foods. They will then dunk the "planets" in water to highlight the fact... (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

This is a lesson about using the light from the star during an occultation event to identify the atmosphere of a planet. Learners will add and subtract light curves (presented as a series of geometrical shapes) to understand how this could occur.... (View More)

This is a lesson about visual spectra. Learners will explore different ways of displaying visual spectra, including colored "barcode" spectra, like those produced by a diffraction grating, and line plots displaying intensity versus color, or... (View More)

This is a collection of mathematical problems about transits in the solar system. Learners can work problems created to be authentic glimpses of modern science and engineering issues, often involving actual research data.

Keywords: Venus transit
Audience: Middle school
Materials Cost: Free

This is an activity exploring the concept that distance affects how we perceive an object's size, specifically pertaining to the size of the Sun and the Moon as seen from Earth. Learners will complete a hands on activity where two balls of differing... (View More)

Keywords: NSTA2013
Audience: Elementary school

In this activity, students will discover how mass is distributed in the solar system and a galaxy by using kitty litter. Students compare the distribution of mass in a solar system to the distribution of mass in a galaxy. This is Activity 6a in the... (View More)

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