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**Earth and space science**

**Solar system**

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During the last sunspot cycle between 1996-2008, over 21,000 flares and 13,000 clouds of plasma exploded from the Sun's magnetically active surface. Students will learn more about space weather through reading a NASA press release and viewing a NASA... (View More) eClips video segment. Then students will explore the statistics of various types of space weather storms by determining the mean, median and mode of different samples of storm events. This activity is part of the Space Math multimedia modules that integrate NASA press releases, NASA archival video, and mathematics problems targeted at specific math standards commonly encountered in middle school textbooks. The modules cover specific math topics at multiple levels of difficulty with real-world data and use the 5E instructional sequence. (View Less)

Students will learn about the Transit of Venus through reading a NASA press release and viewing a NASA eClips video that describes several ways to observe transits. Then students will study angular measurement by learning about parallax and how... (View More) astronomers use this geometric effect to determine the distance to Venus during a Transit of Venus. This activity is part of the Space Math multimedia modules that integrate NASA press releases, NASA archival video, and mathematics problems targeted at specific math standards commonly encountered in middle school textbooks. The modules cover specific math topics at multiple levels of difficulty with real-world data and use the 5E instructional sequence. (View Less)

Students will learn about the twin STEREO spacecraft and how they are being used to track solar storms through reading a NASA press release and viewing a NASA eClips video segment. Then students will examine data to learn more about the frequency... (View More) and speed of solar storms traveling from the Sun to Earth. This activity is part of the Space Math multimedia modules that integrate NASA press releases, NASA archival video, and mathematics problems targeted at specific math standards commonly encountered in middle school textbooks. The modules cover specific math topics at multiple levels of difficulty with real-world data and use the 5E instructional sequence. (View Less)

Students will learn about the Spitzer Infrared Observatory and a recently observed dust ring around Saturn through reading a NASA press release and viewing a NASA video segment. Then students will use scientific notation to perform calculations to... (View More) understand the size, mass, and volume of dust and the new dust ring. Common Core State Standards for Mathematics and English Language Arts are identified. This activity is part of the Space Math multi-media modules that integrate NASA press releases, NASA archival video, and mathematics problems targeted at specific math standards commonly encountered in middle school textbooks. The modules cover specific math topics at multiple levels of difficulty with real-world data and use the 5E instructional sequence. (View Less)

This is a set of three, one-page problems about the sizes of moons in the solar system. Learners will use decimals to compare the sizes and distances of Saturn's moons to the center of Saturn. Options are presented so that students may learn about... (View More) the Cassini mission through a NASA press release or by viewing a NASA eClips video [4 min.] about these and other moons in our solar system. Common Core State Standards for Mathematics and English Language Arts are identified. This activity is part of the Space Math multi-media modules that integrate NASA press releases, NASA archival video, and mathematics problems targeted at specific math standards commonly encountered in middle school. (View Less)

This is a lesson about planetary atmospheres. Learners will interpret real spectral graphs from missions to determine what some of Earth, Venus, and Mars’ atmosphere is composed of and then mathematically compare the amount of the greenhouse gas,... (View More) CO2, on the planets Venus, Earth, and Mars in order to determine which has the most. Students brainstorm to figure out what things, along with greenhouse gases, can affect a planet’s temperature. The activity is part of Project Spectra, a science and engineering program for middle-high school students, focusing on how light is used to explore the Solar System. (View Less)

How effective would solar cells be in any particular area of the United States? In this activity, students answer that question by analyzing graphs of incoming solar radiation. Students will download two solar radiation graphs, one based on latitude... (View More) and one based on cloud cover. After transferring that data to the accompanying worksheet, students will determine the areas in the United States best suited for the use of solar cells. Using both an overlay graph and a difference graph, students will determine the practicality of solar cell power for a home in various U.S. locations. This lesson uses student- and citizen science-friendly microsets of authentic NASA Earth system science data from the MY NASA DATA project. It also includes related links, extensions, an online glossary, and a list of related AP Environmental Science topics. (View Less)

This is a lesson about density. Learners will relate the concept of density to the density of dust in space. They will use mission data from the Student Dust Counter (SDC) interface to determine the density of dust grains in a volume of space in the... (View More) Solar System in order to answer questions concerning the distribution of dust in the solar system. They will discover that space is much more sparsely populated with dust than they may have thought. Students discuss their findings with the class. (View Less)

This is a lesson about the distribution of dust in the solar system. Learners will use data from the Student Dust Counter (SDC) Data Viewer to establish any trends in the distribution of dust. Students record the number of dust particles, or hits,... (View More) recorded by the instrument and the average mass of the particles in a given region. (View Less)

This is an activity about the period of the Sun’s rotation. Learners will select images of the Sun from the SOHO spacecraft image archive. Next, they will calculate an image scale for the selected solar images. Then, they will use it to help... (View More) determine the actual speed of sunspots based on measurements of their motion in the selected Sun images and, finally, determine the period of the Sun's rotation. This activity requires access to the internet to obtain images from the SOHO image archive. This is Activity 3 of the Space Weather Forecast curriculum. (View Less)