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These resources have been used in conjunction with the Earth, Sun, and Moon Short Course for the summer of 2011. These resources are designed to help teachers deepen their knowledge and have resources to aid in teaching these concepts.
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This simulation allows you to design a planet and see if it is habitable.
Use this data base to input data gathered using the Eratosthenes Project Teacher Guide and compare with other values.
This activity is developed as a 5E lesson that engages students in using Eratosthenes' method for determining the circumference of the earth to measure the circumference of a large ball. An extension activity allows students to measure the circumference of the earth. Lesson developed by Don Boonstra
These inquiry rich activities allow students to explore the phases of the Moon.
This resources from NASA's Astrobiology Institute lets students explore the characteristics of the planets in the solar system and consider possibilities for some form of life.
An article describing the process of good inquiry.
The scientific model of the Earth in space--consisting of the spherical Earth and gravity concepts--is one of the first models that children encounter in their science classes. Children’s understanding of these concepts is essential for further conceptual development in astronomy. This article provides a thorough review of educational research concerning children’s development of Earth shape and gravity concepts in the context of national standards and the history of science. Based on this revie
This simulation shows a planet exhibiting retrograde motion over many nights of observation
This activity provides data about the position of the Moon over a month. Students can plot the information and see the orbital shape of the Moon.
This teacher guide from the Year of Physics 2005 can be used to gather data that can be compared with data from other locations. Pair with the Middlebury College Eratosthenes Project.
This is a classic exercise for visualizing just how BIG our Solar System really is. Both the relative size and spacing of the planets are demonstrated in this outdoor exercise, using a mere peppercorn to represent the size of the Earth.
Tour an existing scale model of the solar system here on Earth or create your own scale model using common, inexpensive materials!