SciPacks are self-directed online learning experiences for teachers to enhance their understanding of a particular scientific concept and its related pedagogical implications for student learning. Unlimited expert content help via email and a final assessment both facilitate and document teacher learning.
The Earth, Sun, and Moon SciPack, co-developed between NASA and NSTA, explores the phenomena that can be explained by the position and motion of Earth, the Moon, and the Sun. The focus is on topics supporting Standards and Benchmarks related to the heating of Earth’s surface by the Sun, phases of the Moon, and the apparent changes in the position of objects in the night sky. This SciPack also includes some of the basic details about Earth, including the characteristics that make it unique in our solar system, its composition, and its capacity to support life.
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Phases of the moon
|Intended User Role:||Elementary-Level Educator, Middle-Level Educator, Teacher
|Educational Issues:||Inquiry learning, Professional development, Teacher content knowledge
State Standards Correlation
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||Floyd (Honolulu, HI) on September 19, 2011
||This SciPack described the Earth, Sun and Moon, their orbits and interactions to include phenomenon like tides, eclipses, weather, seasons and energy transfer. One Science Object is devoted to each of the following areas: Earth’s Characteristics(Structure and Systems), Earth’s Orbit, Moon’s Orbit, and Earth’s Seasons.
The content that had the biggest impact for me was the material in the Science Object “Our Moving Earth” which describes the Earth’s orbit, rotation and the apparent motion of the Sun, Moon, and stars. This object, for the first time, gave me a good intuition of how the skies move at night. I have read stories that have people telling time by looking at the stars. I could understand this conceptually, but never saw in my mind’s eye how simple this really is.
As I look at the night sky I now have a more cohesive view of my world and how it works. Now that this is part of my prior knowledge, I will have a broader foundation on which to build my understanding and that of my students.