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Unearth Facts about Space

Students will investigate and identify connections between five everyday items on Earth and phenomena that occur in space. They will find or create a picture to illustrate each everyday item. They will write a summary to explain the science behind each connection.

PROCESS:

  1. Write the following sentences on the board: "A star dies. A barn is painted red." Poll the class twice, first to see how many students would have seen a connection between these sentences before they read the article and again to see how many saw a connection after reading the article.
  2. Point out that if you search hard enough, you can usually find a scientific explanation for most things. And often, part of that explanation has to do with space. After all, Earth is just a tiny part of the universe.
  3. Have students conduct research to identify more connections between everyday items on Earth and phenomena that occur in space. Challenge them to create a list of the top five most interesting and/or most unlikely connections they find. 
  4. Instruct students to write a brief explanation of their top five facts. Tell them to include a photo or draw a picture to illustrate each fact. 

ASSESSMENT: 

Invite students to first share their pictures with the class. Challenge classmates to identify the connection between the picture and space. Then have students reveal and explain their facts. Discuss how science can be used to explain each connection.   

CUSTOMIZE THE LESSON:     

Grades 3-4:
Have the class conduct research to identify potential connections. Poll the class to identify students' top five choices. Divide the class into five groups. Assign each group one fact. Instruct them to investigate their assigned facts further. Then have each group draw a picture of the everyday item it investigated and write a few sentences explaining what they learned. 

Grades 5-6:
Divide the class into small groups. Have groups conduct research to identify five connections between everyday items on Earth and phenomena that occur in space. Instruct each group to draw pictures of the items they investigated and write brief summaries explaining each connection.

Grades 7-8: 
Divide the class into pairs. Have partners conduct research to identify five connections between everyday items on Earth and phenomena that occur in space. Instruct partners to find a photo of each item they investigated. Challenge them to write detailed summaries that clearly explain the science behind each connection. 

Grades 9-10:
Give students time to conduct research to identify connections between everyday items on Earth and phenomena that occur in space. Challenge each student to compile his or her own top five list. Once the facts are selected, have students find a photo of each item they investigated. Challenge them to write detailed summaries that clearly explain the science behind each connection.