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Solar System Exploration
Education
YSS November 2010 Science Education Standards

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Benchmarks
By the end of 12th grade, students should know that:

  • As the Earth and other planets formed, the heavier elements fell to their centers. On planets close to the Sun (Mercury, Venus, Earth, and Mars), the lightest elements were mostly blown or boiled away by radiation from the newly formed Sun; on the outer planets (Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto) the lighter elements still surround them as deep atmospheres of gas or as frozen solid layers. 4A/H5** (SFAA)
  • Our solar system coalesced out of a giant cloud of gas and debris left in the wake of exploding stars about five billion years ago. Everything in and on the Earth, including living organisms, is made of this material. 4A/H6** (SFAA)

National Science Education Standards
Grades 9-12
THE ORIGIN AND EVOLUTION OF THE EARTH SYSTEM
The Sun, the Earth, and the rest of the solar system formed from a nebular cloud of dust and gas 4.6 billion years ago. The early Earth was very different from the planet we live on today.

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Last Updated: 22 May 2012