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Solar System Exploration
Education
YSS October 2011 Science Education Standards

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Benchmarks

A. The Universe
By the end of the 2nd grade, students should know that
  • The sun can be seen only in the daytime, but the moon can be seen sometimes at night and sometimes during the day. The sun, moon, and stars all appear to move slowly across the sky. 4A/P2
  • The moon looks a little different every day but looks the same again about every four weeks. 4A/P3

By the end of the 5th grade, students should know that

  • The earth is one of several planets that orbit the sun, and the moon orbits around the earth. 4A/E4

By the end of 8th grade, students should know that

  • Nine planets of very different size, composition, and surface features move around the sun in nearly circular orbits. Some planets have a variety of moons and even flat rings of rock and ice particles orbiting around them. Some of these planets and moons show evidence of geologic activity. The earth is orbited by one moon, many artificial satellites, and debris. 4A/M3

B. The Earth
By the end of 8th grade, students should know that

  • The moon's orbit around the earth once in about 28 days changes what part of the moon is lighted by the sun and how much of that part can be seen from the earth- the phases of the moon. 4B/M5

National Science Education Standards

Earth and Space Science -Content Standard D

Grades K-4
OBJECTS IN THE SKY
The sun, moon, stars, clouds, birds, and airplanes all have properties, locations, and movements that can be observed and described.

CHANGES IN THE EARTH AND SKY
Objects in the sky have patterns of movement. The sun, for example, appears to move across the sky in the same way every day, but its path changes slowly over the seasons. The moon moves across the sky on a daily basis much like the sun. The observable shape of the moon changes from day to day in a cycle that lasts about a month.

Grades 5-8
EARTH IN THE SOLAR SYSTEM:
The earth is the third planet from the sun in a system that includes the moon, the sun, eight other planets and their moons, and smaller objects, such as asteroids and comets.

Most objects in the solar system are in regular and predictable motion. Those motions explain such phenomena as the day, the year, phases of the moon, and eclipses.

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Last Updated: 22 May 2012