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This set of physics-based labs uses data from NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory spacecraft. Students create movies using near-real-time data, explore the connection between solar activity and space weather, use different types of data to generate... (View More) and test hypotheses, and collaborate with other students to explore further. Students present their results in a scientifically appropriate manner. (View Less)
This is a resource about the Sun and its effects on the rest of the Solar System. Learners will watch movie clips and read a guidebook of information about space weather, solar variability, the heliosphere, Earth’s magnetosphere and upper... (View More) atmosphere, as well as the solar mysteries that scientists are still studying. (View Less)
This series of laboratory lessons and activities uses authentic solar imagery and data to introduce students to solar science. Students are asked to explore details in imagery, including how to deal with the issues of noise and resolution, and... (View More) understand scale. They are introduced to the concept of space weather and how that affects both observing instruments and the Earth. Students learn about spectra, how helium and coronium were discovered, and go on to explore real spectra from the Sun. Most activities are mathematically based, and targeted for grades 9-10. Imagery is included from NASA/ESA's SOHO mission, NASA's SDO mission, and Japan's Hinode satellite. (View Less)
This slide set focuses on the discovery of debris belts around Vega. It is one of a series meant to bring recent NASA discoveries to the college-level non-major introductory astronomy classroom. The slide sets compile short, topical presentations on... (View More) new developments from NASA astrophysics missions relevant to introductory astronomy (astronomy 101) topics. These resources are intended to help Astronomy 101 instructors include the latest developments (discoveries not yet in their textbooks) into the big-picture context of their courses. The slide sets are constructed to be included easily as a lecture supplement including synopsis, references, and graphics. (View Less)
This comic addresses the question "What is color?" Using the Sun as an example, the comic discusses how visible light (white light) contains all the colors of the rainbow. It goes on to describe why our Sun is white, our sky is blue, and why sunsets... (View More) are red/orange. The discussion ends with a thought-question and provides further information on NASA missions and websites that address issues related to the Sun. The comic is illustrated mostly with NASA imagery and is part of the series Tales from Stanford Solar, featuring Camilla Corona and Colours O’Iris. The topic “What is Color?” was inspired by the 2014 Alan Alda Flame Challenge, an international competition asking scientists to communicate complex science in ways that would interest and enlighten an 11-year-old. (View Less)
Two comic characters, Camilla Corona, a rubber chicken, and Colours O'IRIS, a peacock, explore spectrographs. This comic is part of the series Tales from Stanford Solar.
The theme of this unit is the development of an imaginary mission to the asteroid Vesta. It also introduces teachers and students to the Vesta Mappers citizen scientist project, which is part of the CosmoQuest online community. The unit is designed... (View More) to be used in 50-minute periods over 13 days and lessons follow the 5E instructional model. Students will explore not only science content but science and engineering practices as well. An alignment is provided to the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS). (View Less)
Become a crime scene investigator! Learners model Dawn Mission scientists, engineers, and technologists and how they use instrumentation to detect distant worlds. After a briefing right here on Earth to build context, students explore interactions... (View More) between different frequencies/wavelengths of the electromagnetic spectrum and matter as they investigate the different ways scientists gather and understand remote sensing data, using Dawn instruments as examples. This module is organized around a learning cycle, engaging students through several experiences to activate students' prior knowledge and assess conceptual understanding, informing next steps. (View Less)
This is an activity about electromagnetism and the Sun. First, learners will do a KWL activity using six vocabulary words. Next, they will build an electromagnet and investigate how it works. Finally, learners will relate the workings of their... (View More) electromagnet to a Solar Dynamics Observatory magnetogram image of the Sun. Per group of learners, this activity requires materials such as a length of insulated wire, alligator clips, a 2-D-battery holder, two D-batteries, and a nail. (View Less)
This article describes the work being done by scientists to determine the origin of water found in Earth's oceans. A supplemental exploration of the Herschel Space Observatory is included. The article is targeted to children ages 10-12.