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Water is essential to Earth's living system, the biosphere. In this lesson, students determine the types of living things within an outdoor study site, use a taxonomic key to determine the predominant land cover type of their site, then predict the... (View More) amount of water present. Data collection is based on protocols from the GLOBE program. This activity uses the 5E instructional model and is part of the "Survivor Earth" series of one-hour lessons. (View Less)
This article explains the monthly variations in the Moon's appearance as seen from Earth. Directions for using Oreo cookies to illustrate the four major phases of the Moon are provided. The article is targeted to children ages 10-12.
This is an activity about the Moon's influence on Earth. Learners think like a scientist — with reasoning skills and a healthy amount of skepticism — to sort puzzle pieces containing statements about the Moon into two images. The "Far-out Far... (View More) Side" has incorrect statements about the Moon (urban myths), and "True-Blue Blue Moon" has true facts about the Moon’s influence on Earth and life. This activity is part of Explore! Marvel Moon. (View Less)
Learners use a Styrofoam ball, sunlight, and the motions of their bodies to model the Moon's phases outdoors. An extension is to have children predict future Moon phases. This activity is part of Explore! Marvel Moon.
This is an activity about the way the moon interacts with sunlight. Learners consider a ball, wrapped in aluminum foil, and experiment with a flashlight to make it appear bright. The children compare the foil-wrapped ball to a Moon globe and... (View More) discover that the Moon reflects very little of the light the falls on it, but still appears bright. The children construct their own globe of the Moon to take home with them by gluing a map template onto a tennis-ball. This activity is most effective when conducted in a dark area, such as outdoors at night or in a darkened room. This activity is part of Explore! Marvel Moon. (View Less)
Learners read or listen to a cultural story describing a shape identified in the Moon's surface features. Then, they consider how the features formed over the Moon's 4.5-billion-year history and investigate Earth rocks that are similar. Children may... (View More) examine the types of Earth rocks (named anorthosite, basalt, and breccia) that are also found on the Moon and that would have been shaped by the processes explored here. Finally, they draw their own object or character that they see when they look at the Moon. This activity is part of Explore! Marvel Moon. (View Less)
Students will design, build and then test a rain gauge to measure precipitation. By sharing their results, they will recognize the need for standardization and precision in scientific tools. All background information, student worksheets and... (View More) images/photographs/data are included in these downloadable sections: Teacher’s Guide, Student Capture Sheet and PowerPoint Presentation. This activity uses the 5E instructional model and is part of the Survivor Earth series of one-hour lessons. (View Less)
Learners will review what they have learned about scientific and engineering investigation, construct a valid scientific question that can be answered by data and/or modeling, and choose an appropriate mission for their rover that will answer their... (View More) scientific question. The lesson uses the 5E instructional model and includes: TEKS Details (Texas Standards alignment), Essential Question, Science Notebook, Vocabulary Definitions for Students, Vocabulary Definitions for Teachers, four Vocabulary Cards, and supplements on Writing a Scientific Question and Mission Choices. This is lesson 5 of the Mars Rover Celebration Unit, a six week long curriculum. (View Less)
Learners will explore Jupiter's origins through three stories. First, they model their own lifetimes by tying knots in lengths of yarn to represent key events in their pasts. Then, children listen to and act out a cultural origins story, such as the... (View More) Skytellers stories told by Native American master storytellers. Finally, they explore Jupiter's story by modeling a timeline from today back to its "birthday." They use the timeline to visually demonstrate that the Big Bang occurred much earlier in the past. Children will discover how the Juno mission to Jupiter will help unveil how our solar system - including Earth - came to be. The activities are from Explore! Jupiter's Family Secrets, a series designed to engage children in space and planetary science in libraries and informal learning environments. (View Less)