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Instructor guide/manual  
Learning Time:
10 to 30 minutes  
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In this hands-on activity, learners begin by estimating the size of each planet in our Solar System and Pluto and making each out of playdough or a similar material. Then, learners follow specific instructions to divide a mass of playdough into the... (View More)

This is an activity involving observations of the Sun. Learners use pinhole cameras, solar telescopes, and/or solar viewing glasses to make solar observations, draw what they see, and identify sunspots, if they are present. Then, learners go online... (View More)

This is an activity about the concept of direct versus indirect sunlight. Learners construct and use a sun angle analyzer to investigate the effect of angle on area illuminated. The fraction of light on each square of the analyzer is then calculated... (View More)

This is an activity about the measurement of time. Learners model the rotation of Earth over one day by holding a flashlight for the Sun and a blow up globe, and record their observations. Then, they use those observations to create devices that... (View More)

Learners will construct a pinhole camera and, using the projected image of the Sun, calculate its diameter. After calculating the diameter of the Sun, learners will create a classroom sized scale model of the Sun and Earth. This activity requires... (View More)

This is an activity about the motion of the Sun, Earth and Moon, specifically rotation and revolution. After identifying what they already know about the Sun, Earth and Moon, learners will observe and manipulate a styrofoam ball model of the Sun,... (View More)

Keywords: NSTA2013
Audience: Elementary school

This is an activity about the motion of the Sun and the Earth, specifically rotation and revolution. After identifying what they already know about the Sun, learners will observe and manipulate a styrofoam ball model of the Sun and Earth. This... (View More)

Keywords: NSTA2013
Audience: Elementary school

This manual provides simple demonstrations to show how lenses and mirrors are used to create telescopes. It was created for use by the Night Sky Network of astronomy clubs.

Audience: Informal education
Materials Cost: Free

This is an activity used to identify students' initial ideas and potential scientific misconceptions about the Sun. Learners will draw and label the Sun and write a supplemental paragraph containing what they know about the Sun. This is Activity 1... (View More)

Keywords: NSTA2013
Audience: Elementary school

This is an activity to reinforce concepts learned about the Sun, the Sun, Earth, and Moon system and eclipses. Learners will communally discuss their knowledge of these concepts briefly, and will then complete a series of worksheets and writings to... (View More)

Keywords: NSTA2013
Audience: Elementary school