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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.
This is an activity about planetary sizes and distances. Learners will construct a scale model of the Earth, Earth’s Moon and Mars in relation to each other using balloons. They will use this model to predict distances and reflect on how... (View More) scientists use models to construct explanations through the scientific process. The lesson models scientific inquiry using the 5E instructional model and includes teacher notesand vocabulary. (View Less)
This is an activity about measuring craters using shadows and geometry. Learners will make a model crater and use a light source to make a shadow. When they are familiar with the techniques for estimating depths from shadows, they will apply their... (View More) skills to a photograph of three lunar craters. This is Activity C-14 of Universe at Your Fingertips 2.0: A Collection of Activities and Resources for Teaching Astronomy DVD-ROM, which is available for purchase. (View Less)
This is a lesson about the path meteorites take to get from the asteroid belt to Earth and how rare it is for the Earth to be hit by a large asteroid. Three activities comprise the lesson. Learners will draw circles and ellipses to illustrate basic... (View More) shapes of orbits in the solar system (Activity A); construct a scale-model of the inner solar system, observe relative distances and sizes, plot paths meteoroids might take and manipulate models to demonstrate the ecliptic plane (Activity B); and graph the locations of Earth and a near-earth asteroid, observe the significance of time and space, and estimate when the asteroid might cross the orbit of Earth (Activity C). Activities, vocabulary words, and experimental extensions are included. This is Lesson 4 of 19 in Exploring Meteorite Mysteries. (View Less)