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This activity is designed to introduce students to planetary geologic features and processes. First, students will use NASA satellite images to identify geologic surface features on the "Blue Marble" (Earth), and will explore the connection between... (View More) those features and the geologic processes that created them. Using that information, students will then compare and discuss similar features on images from other planets. Included are the following materials: teacher's guide (with reference and resource information), student's guide (with activity sheets), and multiple cards of planetary images. Note that the range of targeted grade levels is quite broad; however, explicit adaptations for younger students are highlighted throughout the teacher's guide. (View Less)
This is a lesson about phase changes. Learners will observe ice melting and freezing under a variety of conditions and relate that to the Messenger mission. This is lesson 1 of 12 in Exploring Ice in the Solar System.
In this 2-part inquiry-based lesson, students conduct a literature search to determine the characteristics of the atmospheres of different planets (Venus, Mercury, Mars and Earth). After collecting and analyzing data, student teams design and... (View More) conduct a controlled physical experiment using a lab apparatus to learn about the interaction of becomes CO², air, and temperature. The resource includes student worksheets, a design proposal, and student questions. Connections to contemporary climate change are addressed. This lesson is the first of four in Topic 4, "How do Atmospheres Affect Planetary Temperatures?" within the resource, Earth Climate Course: What Determines a Planet's Climate? (View Less)
Learners will measure temperature of two different surfaces; sand and stone; on a sunny day, make a series of temperature measurements, and plot the results. Extensions include experimenting with different materials, using temperature sensors and... (View More) noncontact infrared thermometers. The activity is analogous with remote sensing of thermal properties in the Saturn system measured by Cassini. (View Less)