Science Education Links : Space and Astronomy

General Astronomy Information

GRADE LEVEL: Middle School-High School; Secular

Comments: This site is provided by the Royal Greenwich Observatory in the United Kingdom. At this page you will find links to many different LEAFLETS the Observatory has created on many subjects such as: What are stars? Why do we use the phrase, "once in a blue moon"? What are the brightest and nearest stars? Where do stars get their names? What are planets?, etc. A wealth of information is available right here.

The MAD Science Library: Astronomy

GRADE LEVEL: Middle School-High School; Secular

Comments: This site is provided by the MAD Scientist Library. You will find links to "Ask an Astronomer", "Ask an Astronaut", or "Ask the Shuttle crew" which in itself is a valuable resource! There are also links here for your child to discover how astronaunts live while on the Shuttle and what they wear during a space walk. Need information on the nine planets or the sun? That is here too and more.

The Observatory: A Guide to Astronomy Resources on the Exploratorium Website

GRADE LEVEL: Middle School-High School; Secular

Comments: This site is provided by Exploratorium. It is really fun to calculate your weight on other worlds! Follow that link on this page and be astounded! Also there are directions on how to build an accurate model of a solar system using a piece of paper rolled around a toilet paper roll center. There are also links to SOLAR ECLIPSES, SUNSPOTS and AURORAS.

The Family of the Sun

GRADE LEVEL: Elementary-Middle School; Secular

Comments: These are the words to a cute song called, "The Family of the Sun" sung to the tune of "The Farmer in the Dell." The words contain the latest information about the planets and so is a very educational song too!

Edible Rocks

GRADE LEVEL: Elementary-Middle School; Secular

Comments: This is an incredibly fun activity whose purpose is: "to observe and describe physical characteristics of edible samples chosen as models of real rocks or meteorites." Teacher pages and student pages (you will have to follow the link for that page) including vocabulary are given at this site. Children practice the scientific method in this activity--they approach observation, recording results and describing the samples much as scientists do with real meteorite samples. Would be a good activity for a support group to do or an individual family.

How Old Are You

GRADE LEVEL: Middle School; Secular

Comments: Using the provided chart showing how long a year is on each planet, one can calculate their age if they lived on that planet with simple math. This is a good math/science activity.

Orbital Forces

GRADE LEVEL: Elementary-Middle School; Secular

Comments: There are both teacher and student pages available on this web page. The activity is easy to do using readily-available materials.

Gravity Forces and Rockets Activity Index

GRADE LEVEL: Elementary-Middle School; Secular

Comments: On this page choose whether you want to learn about gravity forces or rockets. Both of these concepts show a teacher and a student page. Make an accelerometer out of simple materials to measure G-forces. Or, design a paper rocket propelled by alka seltzer and water to demonstrate how a rocket works.

How Much Do You Weigh?

GRADE LEVEL: Middle School; Secular

Comments: An activity sheet that shows how to calculate your weight on various planets.

CEPS Planetary Image Facility

GRADE LEVEL: Elementary-Middle School; Secular

Comments: Would you just like some pictures and basic facts about the planets for a report? This would be the place. Each planet page lists basic facts, allows you to enlarge images of the planet and gives you a list of all the spacecraft encounters we have had with that planet and the dates of those encounters.

The Nine Planets Glossary

GRADE LEVEL: Elementary-High School; Secular

Comments: Studying astronomy in school and need a definition or want to know who a particular person is? Try here. In addition to a definition, many times you can click on a word to see a picture or go to more information about that subject.

StarChild: A Learning Center for Young Astronomers

GRADE LEVEL: Elementary-Middle School; Secular

Comments: (There is evolutionary content here so be aware!) This site contains basic information about Black Holes, Stars, the Solar System, etc., etc. You can ask to see any particular page as LEVEL ONE (about a Grade 3 level) or as a LEVEL TWO (about Grade 5-6). You can also view any page in PRINTABLE VERSION FORMAT. Throughout the site you will see words in blue...clicking on these words will bring up a definition of the word from their site glossary.

Under "Space Stuff"you will find short biographies about Who's Who in Space, information on the Hubble Telescope, Astronauts and what they wear, Space Probes, etc.

If you follow the link to IMAGINE A UNIVERSE, you will come to a site that is designed for Age 14 and up.V Here you can ask an astronomer a question and read more technical discussions. Again, this site too is will see the BIG BANG THEORY here. Still, you can learn alot of basic information about space here at both of these sites.

Astronomy Picture of the Day

GRADE LEVEL: All Ages; Secular

Comments: This site promises the following: "Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer."

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