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Solar System


Lesson Plans
  1. Finding Planets (University of California - Gould)
      Provides a lesson to help students locate planets. 3-01

  2. Solar System (University of California - SEGway)
      Provides a lesson to explore the solar system. 3-01

  1. Building a Scale Model of the Solar System (CNN)
      Provides sources of information to build a scale model of the solar system. 5-02

  2. Solar System Search (Hamilton)
      Provides a search engine for pictures and articles related to astronomy and the solar system. syst 5-02

  3. Space Exploration Search (NASA)
      Searches NASA for information on space exploration, such as flights to Mars or the Moon, the Space Station, telescopes, pictures of planets, and more.

  1. Earth from Far, Far Away and Very, Very Close (Florida State University - Davidson)
      "View the Milky Way at 10 million light years from the Earth. Then move through space towards the Earth in successive orders of magnitude until you reach a tall oak tree just outside the buildings of the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory in Tallahassee, Florida. After that, begin to move from the actual size of a leaf into a microscopic world that reveals leaf cell walls, the cell nucleus, chromatin, DNA and finally, into the subatomic universe of electrons and protons."

  2. Solar System (NASA)
      Provides a drawing of the solar system. syst 12-99

  3. Solar System - Printable Pictures (NASA - Spaceplace)
      Provides printable color pictures of the Sun, Moon, Earth, and other planets of the solar system. Includes Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, Neptune, Saturn, Uranus, Pluto, Halley's Comet, the asteroid Eros, and the moons Charon, Io, Ganymede, and Titan. 9-01

  4. Solar System Coloring Book (
      Provides pictures of each planet, as well as the sun. 1-05

  1. -06-28-09 The Suns's Protection is Not Constant (
      "The sun protects us from cosmic rays and dust from beyond the solar system by enveloping us in the heliosphere - a bubble of solar wind that extends past Pluto. These cosmic rays would damage the ozone layer, and interstellar dust could dim sunlight and trigger an ice age. However, when the solar system passes through very dense gas and dust clouds, the heliosphere can shrink until its edge is inside Earth's orbit." 06-09

  2. Search for Extraterrestrial Life Within the Solar System (NASA - NAI)
      Provides information about the possibilities of life on other planets in our solar system. Also see Extraterrestrial Life outside our solar system. 02-06

  1. -Solar System - Bodies (Hamilton) star
      Includes pictures of each planet, the sun, asteroids, comets, and meteors. 9-05 syst 7-00

  2. -Solar System - Relationships (Hamilton) star
      Includes comparisons of bodies within the solar system, as well describing phenomena of the solar system. Includes discriptions of how the solar system operates as a whole, such as the interaction between the interstellar winds and the heliosphere of solar winds. syst 7-00

  3. Five-Planet Alignment (ABC News)
      "Five bright planets -- Mercury, Venus, Saturn, Mars and Jupiter -- will be visible just before sunrise beginning Jan. 20. The planetary spectacle is expected to last for the next month -- and the best part is, people hoping to get a look at the cosmic occurrence can enjoy it with the naked eye." 01-16

  4. Ion Powered Space Ships (NASA)
      Describes how ion powered spacecrafts might be desirable for long space missions. 11-00.

  5. Orbits of Planets (Walker)
      Shows the position of planets in relationship to each other at a particular time. 8-01

  6. Photos from Voyager 1 (
      "For 33 years, America's Voyager spacecraft have been flying toward the edges of our solar system. TIME surveys the most notable interstellar scenes captured by the Voyager's cameras along the way.

  7. Planet Sizes (
      Shows the relative size of each planet in our solar system. syst 8-00

  8. Planets from Different Views (Geometry Technologies -
      Provides views of planets, the sun, and the moon at different distances and from different angles. 5-01

  9. Questions About Nebulae (ASK and Astronomer for Kids)
      Provides over a dozen interesting questions and answers for children...and adults. Also spelled "nebulas." 01-06

  10. Questions About the Solar System (ASK and Astronomer for Kids)
      Provides over a dozen interesting questions and answers for children...and adults. 01-06

  11. Rare Planetary Alignment in 2011, Not in 2012 (
      "Beginning today and lasting for a few weeks, Mercury, Venus, Jupiter and Mars will be visible in the early morning sky, aligned roughly along the ecliptic or the path the sun travels throughout the day. Uranus and Neptune, much fainter but there all the same, should be visible through binoculars. What gives the end-of-the-worlders shivers is that just such a configuration is supposed to occur on Dec. 21, 2012, and contribute in some unspecified way to the demolition of the planet. But what makes that especially nonsensical apart from the fact that it's, you know, nonsense is that astronomers say no remotely similar alignment will occur next year." 05-11

  12. Remembering the 11 "Planets" (CNN News)
      "Those having trouble remembering the newly assigned 11 planets, including three dwarfs, are getting help from a fourth-grader."

      " Her award-winning phrase is: My Very Exciting Magic Carpet Just Sailed Under Nine Palace Elephants."

      "The 11 recognized planets are Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Ceres, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, Pluto and Eris."

      Editor's Note: That's two dwarfs, not three. Also, Ceres is not now recognized as a planet; Pluto has been demoted from full planet status also because of its orbit and its content. 02-08

  13. Sequence of Orbits of Planets (NASA)
      Shows the order of the planets from the sun. 02-06

  14. Solar System (
      Provides information and a picture for each planet of the solar system. 11-00.

  15. Solar System (
      Provides a "junior encyclopedia" of knowledge about the solar system, including each planet, the sun, the moon, comets, the asteroid belt, the Kuiper Belt, the Oort Cloud, and a glossary. 1-05

  16. Solar System - Size and Scale (Charity) syst
  17. Solar System - Terms (Hamilton)
      Provides an alphabetic glossary of terms used in astronomy, especially related to the solar system. syst 7-00

  18. Solar Systems Similar to Ours Found ( - Fergano)
      "European and U.S. astronomers Thursday announced the discovery of two solar systems with planets in orbits similar to our own, a finding that boosts the odds that they harbor extraterrestrial life." One orbits the star 55 Cancri. 6-02

  19. Voyager 1 Leaves the Solar System (CBS News)
      "New data collected by NASA's Voyager 1 spacecraft have helped scientists confirm that the far-flung probe is indeed cruising through interstellar space, the researchers say."

      "Interstellar space begins where the heliosphere ends. But by some measures, Voyager 1 remains inside the solar system, which is surrounded by a shell of comets known as the Oort Cloud."

      "While it's unclear exactly how far away from Earth the Oort Cloud lies, Voyager 1 won't get there for quite a while. NASA scientists have estimated that Voyager 1 will emerge from the Oort Cloud in 14,000 to 28,000 years." 07-14

  20. Voyager 1 Leaving the Solar System (USA Today)
      "The Voyager 1 spacecraft, launched from Earth in 1977, will be the first man-made object to leave the solar system within the next year or two, scientists from NASA report." 06-12

  1. Solar System Worksheet (
      Provides a worksheet on the solar system. 11-00.

  2. Solar System Worksheets (AbcTeach)
      Provides dozens of worksheets to help children have a better understanding of the solar system. 8-01


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