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This is the third module in the Solar Dynamic Observatory (SDO) Project Suite curriculum. Each activity is self-directed by students or student teams and utilizes online videos, data from the SDO satellite and hands-on activities to explore,... (View More) research and build knowledge about how the Sun's varying activity impacts Earth and space weather. Each activity provides opportunities to build knowledge and vocabulary, apply or demonstrate learning through real world connections and create resources to use in investigations. Both a teacher and student guide are included with sequential instructions and embedded links to the needed videos, tutorials and internet resources. In Activity 3A: Sun-Earth Interactions, students gather information from online videos and create a 3D model to demonstrate the relationship to Earth's place in space and the affect of Earth's axial tilt on our seasons, then film a short video explaining the reasons for the seasons. Activity 3B: Space Weather, students use online videos to gather information on what space weather is, and its causes and effects, to create a concept map. They then use real-time real-time SDO data to forecast space weather. Activity 3C: Solar Research in Action! Make a Magnetometer has students view information in online videos about to Earth's magnetosphere and the impacts of space weather, then create a magnetometer to detect and visualize changes in the Earth's magnetic fields to monitor solar storm impacts. A computer for student-teams and access to the internet are needed for this module. (View Less)
This is a lesson about measurement and cratering. Learners will read about the origin of the foot as a standardized unit of measure, work collaboratively to conduct an experiment about cratering, and collect and record data to draw logical and... (View More) scientific conclusions. 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, three Vocabulary Cards, and a Mini-Lesson. This is lesson 7 of the Mars Rover Celebration Unit, a six week long curriculum. (View Less)
In this activity about the Sun's influence on plant growth, learners will create a plant box and observe that a plant will grow towards the Sun, its primary source of energy. By periodically collecting data on the growth of the plant, they can come... (View More) to their own conclusions about why the plant grew towards the sunlight. One to two weeks are needed to grow plants for this lesson; also, time is needed to construct the plant box. Potting soil and bean seeds are needed for this activity. (View Less)
In this activity about magnetic fields and their relation to the Sun, learners will simulate sunspots by using iron filings to show magnetic fields around a bar or cow magnet, and draw the magnetic field surrounding two dipole magnets, both in... (View More) parallel and perpendicular alignments. Finally, learners examine images of sunspots to relate their magnetic field drawings and observations to what is seen on the Sun. (View Less)
This is a lesson about the shape of objects in space. Learners will observe the surface of rotating potatoes to help them understand how astronomers use variations in reflective brightness to determine the shape of asteroids.