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Educational Level:
Upper elementary  
SMD Forum - Primary:
Planetary Science  
Learning Time:
2 to 4 hours  
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This is a lesson plan about spacecraft structure and design. Learners will rotate through three stations where they investigate probes and rovers to learn how they are built, learn about the propulsion, navigation, controls and daily handling of... (View More)

This is an activity about structures in space. Learners will construct two different types of trusses to develop an understanding of engineering design for truss structures and the role of shapes in the strength of structures. For optimum completion... (View More)

This is a lesson about using evidence to construct sequences of geologic events. Learners will interpret real NASA science data to identify features on the surface of Mars, determine the surface history of the area, calculate the size of features,... (View More)

This is a lesson about how to plan a mission to explore another world in the Solar System. Learners will discuss the path of a spacecraft traveling between planets, examining the journey from the Earth to Mars as an example. In Activity 1, students... (View More)

This is a lesson about remote sensing. Learners will investigate how much you can learn about something just by looking at it. In Activity 1, students study aerial photographs to identify geologic features, determine how they differ from one... (View More)

In this activity, learners replicate the scientific processes of observing, forming an explanation, revising and communicating about a model of a comet. Learners construct a model of features of a comet using an assortment of common craft supplies.... (View More)

This is a lesson about the definition of planet. Learners will use direct vocabulary instruction to learn the new definitions of planet, dwarf planet, and asteroid. The publicity generated by the International Astronomical Union’s definition of... (View More)

This is a series of hands-on activities comprised of fieldwork and lab work about the basics of soil science. Learners record soil context descriptions, measure soil moisture, describe soil color, structure, consistency, and texture and conduct... (View More)

This is a lesson about living on the Moon. Learners will use cooperative learning skills to design a self-sufficient lunar station.

This is a lesson about robotic exploration of the solar system. Learners will explore the difference between natural and artificial satellites and use images taken by robotic spacecraft and telescopes to gain an understanding of the Earth's place in... (View More)

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