Solar System Lesson Plans
Solar system lesson plans help people learn about the planets and their features in a systematic way. The goals of a well drawn-out solar system lesson plan include the development of thinking, reasoning and collaborative skills.
Topics included in a common solar system lesson are the basics of the solar system, relative distances of planets within the solar system, exploring the planets, and solar system adventures. The total time required is 3 classes with approximately 60 minutes each. The total preparation time for the teacher is about 1 hour. The first period introduces the solar system which is followed by a group discussion. The second period covers relative distances of planets in the solar system and the observation of solar images. Chart preparation of planets is part of the homework. The third period includes discussion and review of planet features from homework, the summarizing of the concepts and facts for gas giant planets.
The objective of a middle school level solar system lesson plan is to give a thorough knowledge of space and the vast emptiness between the planets. These lessons also cover ways of determining the size of a star. Topics for middle school level lesson plans include exploring the planets, charting the planets, solar system and the universe generally. The total time required for this is 4 classes with approximately 60 minutes each. The normal preparation time for the teacher is 2 hours.
High school level lesson plans' objective is to make students observe and explain the apparent movement of the sun and the moon, relating the location of the sun to the time of day and naming and describing the seasons. Before going to the lessons, the student should understand the concepts of basic physics and math including the concepts of ratio, angular velocity, and measurement of an arc in a circle. The topics covered for high school level students are planetary rotation, angular velocity, period of rotation, orbital motion, and angles and angular measurement. The time required for completing the full unit is several days to two weeks.
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