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Earth, our home planet, is the only planet in our solar system known to harbor life - life that is incredibly diverse. All the things we need to survive exist under a thin layer of atmosphere that separates us from the cold, airless void of space.

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  Explore Earth in 3D Videos Activities

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Air Quality at Earth Observatory
Topic: Windy Worlds: Gas Giants, Atmospheres and Weather
Grade Level: 9-12
Body: Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: These citizen science activities could be used in a high school classroom to gather and submit data on local air quality, and to analyze satellite data.


All About Ice
Topic: Ice in the Solar System
Grade Level: K-4
Body: Our Solar System, Earth

Short Description: In this suite of activities, students investigate ice, learn about its properties and explore how it can change states to a liquid or a gas. Through hands-on experiences, they observe ice, find its melting and freezing point, and learn about some of its unique properties, including that ice, the solid phase of water, is less dense than the liquid!


Auroral Magnetism from the Ground (Activity 7)
Topic: Magnetospheres: Planetary Shields
Grade Level: 5-8, 9-12
Body: Our Solar System, Sun, Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: Students analyze graphs to determine the range of magnetic changes at Canadian observatories.


Best of the Solar System
Topic: Investigating Our Planetary Family Tree
Grade Level: 5-8
Body: Our Solar System, Sun, Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Asteroids, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, Dwarf Planets, Comets, Kuiper Belt & Oort Cloud, Earth's Moon, Europa, Pluto
Mission: Cassini (Saturn), Dawn (Dwarf Planets), Galileo (Jupiter), Voyager 1 (Our Solar System), Voyager 2 (Our Solar System)

Short Description: This activity introduces students to planetary research. Using some of the most famous and interesting images of the solar system, students learn to focus on details by studying uncaptioned images. Next students increase their knowledge of the planets and their features by comparing their observations to those of real researchers. Students organize their findings to infer a key difference between inner and outer planets.


Cake Batter Lava
Topic: Volcanism in the Solar System
Grade Level: 5-8
Body: Venus, Earth, Mars
Mission: 2001 Mars Odyssey (Mars), Mars Recon Orbiter (Mars), Venus Express (Venus)

Short Description: Students use cake batter to understand how different lavas flow and the structures that are created.


Carbon Dioxide Increases
Topic: Space Math, Windy Worlds: Gas Giants, Atmospheres and Weather
Grade Level: 5-8
Body: Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: Students study the Keeling Curve to determine the rates of increase of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.


Changes Inside Planets (Differentiation and Breakup)
Topic: Formation of the Solar System
Grade Level: 5-8
Body: Our Solar System, Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Asteroids, Meteors & Meteorites
Mission: Dawn (Dwarf Planets)

Short Description: Students conduct experiments to model the separation of light and heavy materials within a planetary body using gelatin. In a second activity, students model the break-up of a differentiated body using frozen hard-boiled eggs.


Cooling Planets
Topic: Evolving Worlds: Planets, Like People, Grow and Change Over Time
Grade Level: 5-8
Body: Earth, Mars, Earth's Moon
Mission: Earth Science (Earth), InSight (Mars), LADEE (Earth's Moon), Lunar Recon Orbiter (Earth's Moon), MAVEN (Mars)

Short Description: In this activity, students take temperature readings from large and small containers of hot water, and graph the measurements to determine how volume affects cooling. They use this information to interpret the cooling histories of the different sizes of the inner, rocky planets of our inner solar system.


Cosmic Chemistry: Planetary Diversity
Topic: Evolving Worlds: Planets, Like People, Grow and Change Over Time, Formation of the Solar System
Grade Level: 9-12
Body: Our Solar System, Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Asteroids, Meteors & Meteorites, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, Dwarf Planets
Mission: Dawn (Dwarf Planets), InSight (Mars)

Short Description: The goal of this module is to acquaint students with the planets of the solar system and some current models for their origin and evolution. During the explorations of the Cosmic Chemistry: Planetary Diversity module, students will make decisions concerning possible patterns or groupings of the physical and chemical compositions of internal structures and atmospheres of planets. Through classroom activities, they will be encouraged to examine some contemporary models proposed to explain the origin and evolution of the planets. In the final assessment activity students will use these experiences to predict the properties of the the missing planet that could have formed in the asteroid belt.


Crash Landing!
Topic: Evolving Worlds: Planets, Like People, Grow and Change Over Time
Grade Level: 5-8
Body: Our Solar System, Venus, Earth, Mars
Mission: ARTEMIS (Earth's Moon), Earth Science (Earth), InSight (Mars), LADEE (Earth's Moon), Lunar Recon Orbiter (Earth's Moon), Mars Recon Orbiter (Mars), MSL / Curiosity (Mars), Venus Express (Venus), Viking 01 (Mars), Viking 02 (Mars)

Short Description: This activity examines the conditions necessary to support on-going life on a planet. After considering the conditions needed for life as we know it, students select the most habitable planet, in a fictitious planetary system, on which to crash land.


Dance of the Moon and Oceans
Topic: Gravity: It's What Keeps Us Together
Grade Level: 5-8
Body: Sun, Earth, Earth's Moon

Short Description: Students discover how the moon's gravitational pull causes the level of the ocean to rise and fall twice a day along most coastlines through this kinesthetic activity, and consider what the Earth's tides might have been like if there were no moon.


Dancing Lights
Topic: Magnetospheres: Planetary Shields
Grade Level: K-4
Body: Sun, Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: Although children this age aren't prepared to learn about Earth's magnetosphere, they may be interested in the Northern Lights, which are caused by our magnetic field. Students explore the aurora through art and writing.


Differentiation Demonstration: Moon
Topic: Evolving Worlds: Planets, Like People, Grow and Change Over Time
Grade Level: 5-8
Body: Earth, Earth's Moon
Mission: Earth Science (Earth), LADEE (Earth's Moon), Lunar Recon Orbiter (Earth's Moon)

Short Description: Students observe a model of planetary differentiation, the organization of planetary interiors into layers of different densities. Materials of different densities are mixed in a bottle and allowed to separate into layers. The simple model illustrates how the Moon's interior became organized into a distinct core, mantle and outer crust from the debris of the Giant Impact.


Discover Earth: Hands-on Activities
Topic: Windy Worlds: Gas Giants, Atmospheres and Weather
Grade Level: K-4
Body: Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: This module to support hands-on Earth science explorations includes several activities for this age, including Weather Wall, Weather: the Many Faces of Mother Nature and Weather Stations. Educators are invited to download the activities, supporting reading games and facilitator resources.


Discovering Plate Boundaries
Topic: Volcanism in the Solar System
Grade Level: 5-8
Body: Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: This data-rich exercise to help students discover the processes that occur at plate tectonic boundaries is built around four global data maps: 1) Earthquake location and depth, 2) Location of recent volcanic activity, 3) Seafloor Age, and 4) Topography and Bathymetry. Alternative versions of the activity can concentrate on examining just the volcanic data and comparing the locations of volcanoes composed primarily of basalt to those of andesite and rhyolite, relative to plate boundaries.


Discovering Plate Boundaries
Topic: Evolving Worlds: Planets, Like People, Grow and Change Over Time, Volcanism in the Solar System
Grade Level: 5-8, 9-12
Body: Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: This is an excellent inquiry based activity through which students in upper elementary through college can make observations about the patterns of features on Earth's surface -- and draw conclusions about the movements of Earth's tectonic plates.


Dunking the Planets
Topic: Investigating Our Planetary Family Tree
Grade Level: K-4
Body: Our Solar System, Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Asteroids, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, Dwarf Planets
Mission: Voyager 1 (Our Solar System), Voyager 2 (Our Solar System)

Short Description: In this 30-minute demonstration, children ages 9-13 compare the relative sizes and masses of scale models of the planets as represented by fruits and other foods. The children dunk the "planets" in water to highlight the fact that even a large, massive planet -- such as Saturn -- can have low density. They discuss how a planet's density is related to whether it is mainly made up of rock or gas.


Evaporation Investigation
Topic: Water in the Solar System
Grade Level: K-4
Body: Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: Students observe and understand the process of evaporation.


Exploring Crustal Materials from a Mystery Planet
Topic: Our Evolving Understanding of Our Solar System
Grade Level: K-4, 5-8, 9-12
Body: Our Solar System, Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: Students observe the characteristics of "crustal material" samples, classify material into groups, infer causes for the characteristics of the various samples, and infer the history of the mystery planet.


Exploring Ice in the Solar System
Topic: Ice in the Solar System, Water in the Solar System
Grade Level: K-4, 5-8
Body: Our Solar System, Mercury, Earth, Mars, Asteroids, Dwarf Planets, Comets, Kuiper Belt & Oort Cloud, Earth's Moon, Europa, Pluto, Ceres
Mission: Lunar Recon Orbiter (Earth's Moon), Mars Recon Orbiter (Mars), MESSENGER (Mercury), New Horizons (Dwarf Planets), Rosetta (Comets)

Short Description: Examine the importance of water in the form of ice in the solar system. From hands-on experiences with ice, the unit moves on to investigating ice in everyday life, in polar regions on Earth, and throughout the solar system.


Exploring the Earth's Magnetic Field
Topic: Magnetospheres: Planetary Shields
Grade Level: K-4, 5-8, 9-12
Body: Our Solar System, Sun, Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth), Heliophysics (Sun)

Short Description: This is a workbook of 23 activities spanning the needs of K-12 teachers who want to discuss Earth's magnetism in varying degrees of detail. Chapters 2-3 contain 11 activities for high school students. It includes web-based activities, and a variety of hands-on experiments with magnets and electromagnetism.


Exponential Functions and the Atmosphere
Topic: Space Math, Windy Worlds: Gas Giants, Atmospheres and Weather
Grade Level: 9-12
Body: Earth, Mars, Earth's Moon
Mission: Earth Science (Earth), LADEE (Earth's Moon), Lunar Recon Orbiter (Earth's Moon), Mars Recon Orbiter (Mars), MSL / Curiosity (Mars), MAVEN (Mars)

Short Description: A study of the way a planet's atmosphere changes as its temperature is changed using exponential functions.


Finding the Distance to the Sun
Topic: The Sun, Transits and Eclipses
Grade Level: 5-8, 9-12
Body: Sun, Venus, Earth
Mission: Heliophysics (Sun)

Short Description: The students will apply the concepts of vertical angles and ratios to calculate lengths and angles. Can they determine the distance to the sun?


Gelatin Volcanoes
Topic: Volcanism in the Solar System
Grade Level: 9-12
Body: Our Solar System, Venus, Earth, Mars
Mission: 2001 Mars Odyssey (Mars), Mars Recon Orbiter (Mars), Venus Express (Venus)

Short Description: Jell-O is used to explore how lava flows in a volcano.


Goldilocks and the Three Planets
Topic: Windy Worlds: Gas Giants, Atmospheres and Weather
Grade Level: 5-8
Body: Venus, Earth, Mars
Mission: Akatsuki (Venus), MAVEN (Mars), Venus Express (Venus)

Short Description: Students determine what some of Earth, Venus and Mars' atmosphere is composed of and then mathematically compare the amount of the greenhouse gas, CO2, on the planets Venus, Earth and Mars in order to determine which has the most.


Gravity Induced Tides: It's What Pushes Us Apart
Topic: Gravity: It's What Keeps Us Together
Grade Level: 9-12
Body: Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: The materials relating to gravity, tides, the slowing of the Earth's rotation, and the confirmation of the accuracy of radiometric age dating techniques make an engaging supporting story for high school classes studying radioactivity and age dating of geologic materials.


How Low Can You Go
Topic: Gravity: It's What Keeps Us Together
Grade Level: K-4
Body: Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: Students compare the weight of various objects and describe gravity as the force that holds us on the Earth.


Inside Mars -- Puzzling Patterns -- Where Does Volcanism Occur?
Topic: Our Evolving Understanding of Our Solar System
Grade Level: K-4, 5-8, 9-12
Body: Earth, Mars
Mission: Mars Recon Orbiter (Mars)

Short Description: Students compare volcano maps of Earth and Mars and identify patterns, similarities and differences.


Investigating the Martian Polar Caps
Topic: Ice in the Solar System
Grade Level: 5-8
Body: Earth, Mars
Mission: Hubble (Beyond Our Solar System)

Short Description: Students use internet resources and image processing to measure and compare the Martian and terrestrial polar caps at different seasons, and analyze their results.


It's Just a Phase: Water as a Solid, Liquid, and Gas
Topic: Water in the Solar System
Grade Level: 5-8, 9-12
Body: Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: Students construct models of the way water molecules arrange themselves in the three physical states.


Live from the Hubble Space Telescope
Topic: Windy Worlds: Gas Giants, Atmospheres and Weather
Grade Level: 5-8
Body: Earth, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune
Mission: Cassini (Saturn), Hubble (Beyond Our Solar System), Juno (Jupiter), Voyager 1 (Our Solar System), Voyager 2 (Our Solar System)

Short Description: In this series of activities, students compare the weather, plot the movement of weather systems, and observe a fundamental motion of air responsible for certain large cloud formations on Earth and other planets, and report these observations.


Magnetic Globe
Topic: Magnetospheres: Planetary Shields
Grade Level: 5-8
Body: Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: Students use a magnet inside a small globe and clamped staples to model the magnetic field lines of the Earth.


Magnetic Math
Topic: Magnetospheres: Planetary Shields
Grade Level: 9-12
Body: Our Solar System, Sun, Mercury, Earth, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune
Mission: Cassini (Saturn), Juno (Jupiter), MESSENGER (Mercury)

Short Description: This book contains hands-on exercises and math problems which allow students to explore magnetism and magnetic fields. The activities include drawing and geometric construction, and introduce students in the use of simple algebra to quantitatively examine magnetic forces, energy, and magnetic field lines and their mathematical structure.


Magnetic Sensor Measurements with a Graphing Calculator
Topic: Magnetospheres: Planetary Shields
Grade Level: 9-12
Body: Our Solar System, Sun, Mercury, Earth, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune
Mission: Cassini (Saturn), Earth Science (Earth), InSight (Mars), Juno (Jupiter)

Short Description: This activity uses magnetic field sensors with the "Texas Instrument" Graphing Calculator and CBL to measure and plot magnetic fields. This allows the student to prove that magnetic fields decrease as the negative cube of the distance.


Magnetism and Electromagnetism
Topic: Magnetospheres: Planetary Shields
Body: Our Solar System, Sun, Mercury, Earth, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune
Mission: Cassini (Saturn), Earth Science (Earth), Juno (Jupiter), MESSENGER (Mercury)

Short Description: In this review of basic magnetism, students map field lines around bar magnets to visualize the magnetic dipole field, and create their own electromagnet using copper wire, battery and a pencil to learn that electric currents create magnetic fields.


Making and Mapping a Volcano
Topic: Volcanism in the Solar System
Grade Level: 5-8
Body: Earth, Mars
Mission: 2001 Mars Odyssey (Mars), Mars Recon Orbiter (Mars)

Short Description: After each of a series of vinegar/baking soda eruptions, students use Play-Doh to mark where the lava flowed. In teams they examine the stratigraphy and map the flows.


Mapping Magnetic Influence
Topic: Magnetospheres: Planetary Shields
Grade Level: 5-8, 9-12
Body: Sun, Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth), SOHO (Comets)

Short Description: This lesson is designed to allow your students to explore magnets and develop an operational definition of a magnet "field" and an operational definition for a magnetic "pole."


MY NASA DATA Lessons
Topic: Ice in the Solar System, Water in the Solar System, Windy Worlds: Gas Giants, Atmospheres and Weather
Grade Level: K-4, 5-8, 9-12
Body: Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: MY NASA DATA microsets are created using data from NASA Earth science satellite missions and provide information on Earth's atmosphere, biosphere, cryosphere, ocean, and land surface. There are a variety of lessons using these data.


Observing, Describing and Identifying Clouds
Topic: Windy Worlds: Gas Giants, Atmospheres and Weather
Grade Level: K-4
Body: Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: Students observe and sketch clouds, describing their forms. They generate their own descriptions and then move toward building a more scientific vocabulary. They then correlate their descriptions with the standard classifications.


Plasma Wars
Topic: Magnetospheres: Planetary Shields
Grade Level: 5-8
Body: Our Solar System, Sun, Earth
Mission: Genesis (Our Solar System)

Short Description: Students use iron powder to model the solar wind, moving under pressure created by a pipette, encountering and interacting with an enclosed magnetic field. The student text introduces the idea of planetary diversity not only in the shape, size, and strength of the planetary magnetospheres, but also in the types and sources of the high-energy charged particles that occupy them.


Rock Star Precipitation
Topic: Water in the Solar System
Grade Level: K-4
Body: Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: Student predict the best times for rock stars to perform outdoors, using monthly precipitation data from around the world.


S'COOL Lesson Plans
Topic: Windy Worlds: Gas Giants, Atmospheres and Weather
Grade Level: K-4, 5-8
Body: Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: In the S'COOL project students gather data to help NASA study the ways in which clouds may affect the Earth's climate. The project includes a large number of lesson plans on clouds, temperatures and weather; most are geared toward elementary students. Check Educator Resources for S'COOL materials, presentations and more.


Scale Model of Sun and Earth
Topic: The Sun, Transits and Eclipses
Grade Level: K-4
Body: Our Solar System, Sun, Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth), Heliophysics (Sun)

Short Description: This activity explores the relative size of sun and Earth, as well as the distance between them.


Space Weather Action Center
Topic: Magnetospheres: Planetary Shields, The Sun, Transits and Eclipses
Grade Level: 5-8, 9-12
Body: Our Solar System, Sun, Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth), Heliophysics (Sun)

Short Description: Imagine being able to monitor the progress of an entire solar storm from the time it erupts from our Sun until it sweeps past our small planet effecting enormous changes in our magnetic field. Now imagine being able to do all of this from your Space Weather Action Center (S.W.A.C.)! By following the basic steps in the Instructional Guide your class will soon be on its way to accessing, analyzing and recording NASA satellite and observatory data.


SpaceMath: The Transit of Mercury
Topic: Space Math, The Sun, Transits and Eclipses
Grade Level: 9-12
Body: Sun, Mercury, Earth
Mission: Heliophysics (Sun)

Short Description: As seen from Earth, the planet Mercury occasionally passes across the face of the sun; an event that astronomers call a transit. From images taken by the Hinode satellite, students will create a model of the solar disk to the same scale as the image, and calculate the distance to the sun.


Summit Up -- Comparing Volcanos on Mars and Earth
Topic: Volcanism in the Solar System
Grade Level: K-4, 5-8
Body: Earth, Mars
Mission: 2001 Mars Odyssey (Mars), Mars Recon Orbiter (Mars)

Short Description: Summit Up is a 20 minute activity in which children make paper models to scale of the tallest volcanic mountains on Earth and Mars and discover a big difference between volcanoes on these two planets.


Terrabagga Activity Using a Magnetometer
Topic: Magnetospheres: Planetary Shields
Grade Level: 5-8
Body: Mercury, Earth, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune
Mission: Dawn (Dwarf Planets), Earth Science (Earth), InSight (Mars), MAVEN (Mars)

Short Description: This activity models real-world uses of a magnetometer instrument. Students will see how magnetic fields of the planets and moons are found.


The Classroom Magnetometer
Topic: Magnetospheres: Planetary Shields
Grade Level: 5-8
Body: Our Solar System, Sun, Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: Students build and operate a simple magnetometer using a soda bottle and a bar magnet, and use it to monitor changes in Earth's magnetic field.


The Goldilocks Principle: A Model of Atmospheric Gases
Topic: Windy Worlds: Gas Giants, Atmospheres and Weather
Grade Level: 5-8
Body: Venus, Earth, Mars
Mission: Akatsuki (Venus), Earth Science (Earth), MAVEN (Mars), Venus Express (Venus)

Short Description: This activity introduces students to the atmospheric differences between the three "sister" planets in a graphic and hands-on way, using jelly beans or cotton balls to model different atmospheric gases. Students will use this understanding later as they begin to appreciate the scope and importance of the greenhouse effect on Earth.


The Magnetometer
Topic: Magnetospheres: Planetary Shields
Grade Level: K-4
Body: Mercury, Earth, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: Students build an instrument capable of detecting a magnetic field and magnetic polarity.


The Solar Wind Tunnel: A Comet Borrelly Interactive
Topic: Magnetospheres: Planetary Shields
Grade Level: 5-8
Body: Our Solar System, Sun, Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Asteroids, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, Dwarf Planets, Comets
Mission: Rosetta (Comets), SOHO (Comets), Wind (Our Solar System)

Short Description: Students compare their observations of the solar wind's interaction with magnetized planets, non-magnetized planets, comets, and asteroids, and record their observations online.


The Water Cycle - Now You See It, Now You Don't
Topic: Water in the Solar System
Grade Level: K-4
Body: Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: Elementary students learn about the relationship between temperature and condensation.


Time Lineup
Topic: Evolving Worlds: Planets, Like People, Grow and Change Over Time
Grade Level: 5-8, 9-12
Body: Our Solar System, Sun, Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Asteroids, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, Dwarf Planets, Comets, Kuiper Belt & Oort Cloud, Earth's Moon
Mission: ARTEMIS (Earth's Moon), Cassini (Saturn), Dawn (Dwarf Planets), Galileo (Jupiter), Hubble (Beyond Our Solar System), InSight (Mars), Juno (Jupiter), LADEE (Earth's Moon), Lunar Recon Orbiter (Earth's Moon), MSL / Curiosity (Mars), MAVEN (Mars), MESSENGER (Mercury), Viking 01 (Mars), Viking 02 (Mars), Voyager 1 (Our Solar System), Voyager 2 (Our Solar System), WISE (Our Solar System)

Short Description: Students work in groups or as a class to determine the order of events that formed our solar system. This is an excellent activity to begin discussion of events that shaped the solar system and how Earth's geosphere and biosphere have changed -- in an interrelated manner -- through time.


Tracking a Solar Storm
Topic: Ancient Astronomers / Modern Tools, Magnetospheres: Planetary Shields
Body: Our Solar System, Sun, Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth), Heliophysics (Sun)

Short Description: This is a pair of high school-level workbooks featuring advanced problems in mathematics and science that are based on experiments performed with the IMAGE satellite.


Using MY NASA DATA to Determine Volcanic Activity
Topic: Volcanism in the Solar System
Grade Level: 9-12
Body: Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: Students use NASA satellite data of optical depth as a tool to determine volcanic activity on Reunion Island during 2000-2001.


Volcanos are a Blast: Working with Simple Equations
Topic: Space Math, Volcanism in the Solar System
Grade Level: 9-12
Body: Earth, Earth's Moon
Mission: Cassini (Saturn), Earth Science (Earth), Lunar Recon Orbiter (Earth's Moon)

Short Description: Students examine the famous Krakatoa explosion, asteroid impacts on the moon and geysers on Enceladus (a moon of Saturn) using three equations that describe the height of the plume and initial velocity to answer questions about the speed of the debris and terminal height.


Water Quality at Earth Observatory
Topic: Water in the Solar System
Grade Level: 9-12
Body: Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: These citizen science activities could be used in a high school classroom to gather and submit data on local water quality, and to analyze satellite data.


What Makes Day and Night? The Earth's Rotation
Topic: Ancient Astronomers / Modern Tools, The Sun, Transits and Eclipses
Grade Level: K-4
Body: Sun, Earth
Mission: Heliophysics (Sun)

Short Description: In this demonstration of day and night, students learn kinesthetically as they take on the role of the Earth orbiting the rotating sun.


What Makes Shadows? Observing and Drawing Shadows
Topic: Ancient Astronomers / Modern Tools, The Sun, Transits and Eclipses
Grade Level: K-4
Body: Sun, Earth
Mission: Heliophysics (Sun)

Short Description: Students learn about shadows as they observe and draw the shadow of a classmate.


What's the Difference?
Topic: Investigating Our Planetary Family Tree
Grade Level: 9-12
Body: Earth, Mars
Mission: InSight (Mars), MAVEN (Mars)

Short Description: This is a free multimedia software application that facilitates scientific analysis by allowing virtually any pictures, graphics, animations, and movies to be compared side by side. The solar system dataset contains comparisons of the planets and major moons within our solar system. Users can upload graphical, animated, interactive, textual, and audio-formatted content into the categories and attributes grid and then supplement their data with customized multiple choice and summary assessment tests.


Why Follow the Water
Topic: Astrobiology: Got Life?, Water in the Solar System
Grade Level: 5-8, 9-12
Body: Earth, Mars
Mission: Earth Science (Earth), Mars Recon Orbiter (Mars), Phoenix (Mars)

Short Description: Students investigate several physical properties of liquid water to better understand why we think water is important for life. An extension activity investigates the connection between liquid water and plant productivity on Earth.

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Air Quality at Earth Observatory
Topic: Windy Worlds: Gas Giants, Atmospheres and Weather
Grade Level: 9-12
Body: Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: These citizen science activities could be used in a high school classroom to gather and submit data on local air quality, and to analyze satellite data.


All About Ice
Topic: Ice in the Solar System
Grade Level: K-4
Body: Our Solar System, Earth

Short Description: In this suite of activities, students investigate ice, learn about its properties and explore how it can change states to a liquid or a gas. Through hands-on experiences, they observe ice, find its melting and freezing point, and learn about some of its unique properties, including that ice, the solid phase of water, is less dense than the liquid!


Auroral Magnetism from the Ground (Activity 7)
Topic: Magnetospheres: Planetary Shields
Grade Level: 5-8, 9-12
Body: Our Solar System, Sun, Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: Students analyze graphs to determine the range of magnetic changes at Canadian observatories.


Best of the Solar System
Topic: Investigating Our Planetary Family Tree
Grade Level: 5-8
Body: Our Solar System, Sun, Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Asteroids, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, Dwarf Planets, Comets, Kuiper Belt & Oort Cloud, Earth's Moon, Europa, Pluto
Mission: Cassini (Saturn), Dawn (Dwarf Planets), Galileo (Jupiter), Voyager 1 (Our Solar System), Voyager 2 (Our Solar System)

Short Description: This activity introduces students to planetary research. Using some of the most famous and interesting images of the solar system, students learn to focus on details by studying uncaptioned images. Next students increase their knowledge of the planets and their features by comparing their observations to those of real researchers. Students organize their findings to infer a key difference between inner and outer planets.


Cake Batter Lava
Topic: Volcanism in the Solar System
Grade Level: 5-8
Body: Venus, Earth, Mars
Mission: 2001 Mars Odyssey (Mars), Mars Recon Orbiter (Mars), Venus Express (Venus)

Short Description: Students use cake batter to understand how different lavas flow and the structures that are created.


Carbon Dioxide Increases
Topic: Space Math, Windy Worlds: Gas Giants, Atmospheres and Weather
Grade Level: 5-8
Body: Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: Students study the Keeling Curve to determine the rates of increase of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.


Changes Inside Planets (Differentiation and Breakup)
Topic: Formation of the Solar System
Grade Level: 5-8
Body: Our Solar System, Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Asteroids, Meteors & Meteorites
Mission: Dawn (Dwarf Planets)

Short Description: Students conduct experiments to model the separation of light and heavy materials within a planetary body using gelatin. In a second activity, students model the break-up of a differentiated body using frozen hard-boiled eggs.


Cooling Planets
Topic: Evolving Worlds: Planets, Like People, Grow and Change Over Time
Grade Level: 5-8
Body: Earth, Mars, Earth's Moon
Mission: Earth Science (Earth), InSight (Mars), LADEE (Earth's Moon), Lunar Recon Orbiter (Earth's Moon), MAVEN (Mars)

Short Description: In this activity, students take temperature readings from large and small containers of hot water, and graph the measurements to determine how volume affects cooling. They use this information to interpret the cooling histories of the different sizes of the inner, rocky planets of our inner solar system.


Cosmic Chemistry: Planetary Diversity
Topic: Evolving Worlds: Planets, Like People, Grow and Change Over Time, Formation of the Solar System
Grade Level: 9-12
Body: Our Solar System, Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Asteroids, Meteors & Meteorites, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, Dwarf Planets
Mission: Dawn (Dwarf Planets), InSight (Mars)

Short Description: The goal of this module is to acquaint students with the planets of the solar system and some current models for their origin and evolution. During the explorations of the Cosmic Chemistry: Planetary Diversity module, students will make decisions concerning possible patterns or groupings of the physical and chemical compositions of internal structures and atmospheres of planets. Through classroom activities, they will be encouraged to examine some contemporary models proposed to explain the origin and evolution of the planets. In the final assessment activity students will use these experiences to predict the properties of the the missing planet that could have formed in the asteroid belt.


Crash Landing!
Topic: Evolving Worlds: Planets, Like People, Grow and Change Over Time
Grade Level: 5-8
Body: Our Solar System, Venus, Earth, Mars
Mission: ARTEMIS (Earth's Moon), Earth Science (Earth), InSight (Mars), LADEE (Earth's Moon), Lunar Recon Orbiter (Earth's Moon), Mars Recon Orbiter (Mars), MSL / Curiosity (Mars), Venus Express (Venus), Viking 01 (Mars), Viking 02 (Mars)

Short Description: This activity examines the conditions necessary to support on-going life on a planet. After considering the conditions needed for life as we know it, students select the most habitable planet, in a fictitious planetary system, on which to crash land.


Dance of the Moon and Oceans
Topic: Gravity: It's What Keeps Us Together
Grade Level: 5-8
Body: Sun, Earth, Earth's Moon

Short Description: Students discover how the moon's gravitational pull causes the level of the ocean to rise and fall twice a day along most coastlines through this kinesthetic activity, and consider what the Earth's tides might have been like if there were no moon.


Dancing Lights
Topic: Magnetospheres: Planetary Shields
Grade Level: K-4
Body: Sun, Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: Although children this age aren't prepared to learn about Earth's magnetosphere, they may be interested in the Northern Lights, which are caused by our magnetic field. Students explore the aurora through art and writing.


Differentiation Demonstration: Moon
Topic: Evolving Worlds: Planets, Like People, Grow and Change Over Time
Grade Level: 5-8
Body: Earth, Earth's Moon
Mission: Earth Science (Earth), LADEE (Earth's Moon), Lunar Recon Orbiter (Earth's Moon)

Short Description: Students observe a model of planetary differentiation, the organization of planetary interiors into layers of different densities. Materials of different densities are mixed in a bottle and allowed to separate into layers. The simple model illustrates how the Moon's interior became organized into a distinct core, mantle and outer crust from the debris of the Giant Impact.


Discover Earth: Hands-on Activities
Topic: Windy Worlds: Gas Giants, Atmospheres and Weather
Grade Level: K-4
Body: Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: This module to support hands-on Earth science explorations includes several activities for this age, including Weather Wall, Weather: the Many Faces of Mother Nature and Weather Stations. Educators are invited to download the activities, supporting reading games and facilitator resources.


Discovering Plate Boundaries
Topic: Volcanism in the Solar System
Grade Level: 5-8
Body: Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: This data-rich exercise to help students discover the processes that occur at plate tectonic boundaries is built around four global data maps: 1) Earthquake location and depth, 2) Location of recent volcanic activity, 3) Seafloor Age, and 4) Topography and Bathymetry. Alternative versions of the activity can concentrate on examining just the volcanic data and comparing the locations of volcanoes composed primarily of basalt to those of andesite and rhyolite, relative to plate boundaries.


Discovering Plate Boundaries
Topic: Evolving Worlds: Planets, Like People, Grow and Change Over Time, Volcanism in the Solar System
Grade Level: 5-8, 9-12
Body: Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: This is an excellent inquiry based activity through which students in upper elementary through college can make observations about the patterns of features on Earth's surface -- and draw conclusions about the movements of Earth's tectonic plates.


Dunking the Planets
Topic: Investigating Our Planetary Family Tree
Grade Level: K-4
Body: Our Solar System, Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Asteroids, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, Dwarf Planets
Mission: Voyager 1 (Our Solar System), Voyager 2 (Our Solar System)

Short Description: In this 30-minute demonstration, children ages 9-13 compare the relative sizes and masses of scale models of the planets as represented by fruits and other foods. The children dunk the "planets" in water to highlight the fact that even a large, massive planet -- such as Saturn -- can have low density. They discuss how a planet's density is related to whether it is mainly made up of rock or gas.


Evaporation Investigation
Topic: Water in the Solar System
Grade Level: K-4
Body: Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: Students observe and understand the process of evaporation.


Exploring Crustal Materials from a Mystery Planet
Topic: Our Evolving Understanding of Our Solar System
Grade Level: K-4, 5-8, 9-12
Body: Our Solar System, Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: Students observe the characteristics of "crustal material" samples, classify material into groups, infer causes for the characteristics of the various samples, and infer the history of the mystery planet.


Exploring Ice in the Solar System
Topic: Ice in the Solar System, Water in the Solar System
Grade Level: K-4, 5-8
Body: Our Solar System, Mercury, Earth, Mars, Asteroids, Dwarf Planets, Comets, Kuiper Belt & Oort Cloud, Earth's Moon, Europa, Pluto, Ceres
Mission: Lunar Recon Orbiter (Earth's Moon), Mars Recon Orbiter (Mars), MESSENGER (Mercury), New Horizons (Dwarf Planets), Rosetta (Comets)

Short Description: Examine the importance of water in the form of ice in the solar system. From hands-on experiences with ice, the unit moves on to investigating ice in everyday life, in polar regions on Earth, and throughout the solar system.


Exploring the Earth's Magnetic Field
Topic: Magnetospheres: Planetary Shields
Grade Level: K-4, 5-8, 9-12
Body: Our Solar System, Sun, Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth), Heliophysics (Sun)

Short Description: This is a workbook of 23 activities spanning the needs of K-12 teachers who want to discuss Earth's magnetism in varying degrees of detail. Chapters 2-3 contain 11 activities for high school students. It includes web-based activities, and a variety of hands-on experiments with magnets and electromagnetism.


Exponential Functions and the Atmosphere
Topic: Space Math, Windy Worlds: Gas Giants, Atmospheres and Weather
Grade Level: 9-12
Body: Earth, Mars, Earth's Moon
Mission: Earth Science (Earth), LADEE (Earth's Moon), Lunar Recon Orbiter (Earth's Moon), Mars Recon Orbiter (Mars), MSL / Curiosity (Mars), MAVEN (Mars)

Short Description: A study of the way a planet's atmosphere changes as its temperature is changed using exponential functions.


Finding the Distance to the Sun
Topic: The Sun, Transits and Eclipses
Grade Level: 5-8, 9-12
Body: Sun, Venus, Earth
Mission: Heliophysics (Sun)

Short Description: The students will apply the concepts of vertical angles and ratios to calculate lengths and angles. Can they determine the distance to the sun?


Gelatin Volcanoes
Topic: Volcanism in the Solar System
Grade Level: 9-12
Body: Our Solar System, Venus, Earth, Mars
Mission: 2001 Mars Odyssey (Mars), Mars Recon Orbiter (Mars), Venus Express (Venus)

Short Description: Jell-O is used to explore how lava flows in a volcano.


Goldilocks and the Three Planets
Topic: Windy Worlds: Gas Giants, Atmospheres and Weather
Grade Level: 5-8
Body: Venus, Earth, Mars
Mission: Akatsuki (Venus), MAVEN (Mars), Venus Express (Venus)

Short Description: Students determine what some of Earth, Venus and Mars' atmosphere is composed of and then mathematically compare the amount of the greenhouse gas, CO2, on the planets Venus, Earth and Mars in order to determine which has the most.


Gravity Induced Tides: It's What Pushes Us Apart
Topic: Gravity: It's What Keeps Us Together
Grade Level: 9-12
Body: Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: The materials relating to gravity, tides, the slowing of the Earth's rotation, and the confirmation of the accuracy of radiometric age dating techniques make an engaging supporting story for high school classes studying radioactivity and age dating of geologic materials.


How Low Can You Go
Topic: Gravity: It's What Keeps Us Together
Grade Level: K-4
Body: Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: Students compare the weight of various objects and describe gravity as the force that holds us on the Earth.


Inside Mars -- Puzzling Patterns -- Where Does Volcanism Occur?
Topic: Our Evolving Understanding of Our Solar System
Grade Level: K-4, 5-8, 9-12
Body: Earth, Mars
Mission: Mars Recon Orbiter (Mars)

Short Description: Students compare volcano maps of Earth and Mars and identify patterns, similarities and differences.


Investigating the Martian Polar Caps
Topic: Ice in the Solar System
Grade Level: 5-8
Body: Earth, Mars
Mission: Hubble (Beyond Our Solar System)

Short Description: Students use internet resources and image processing to measure and compare the Martian and terrestrial polar caps at different seasons, and analyze their results.


It's Just a Phase: Water as a Solid, Liquid, and Gas
Topic: Water in the Solar System
Grade Level: 5-8, 9-12
Body: Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: Students construct models of the way water molecules arrange themselves in the three physical states.


Live from the Hubble Space Telescope
Topic: Windy Worlds: Gas Giants, Atmospheres and Weather
Grade Level: 5-8
Body: Earth, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune
Mission: Cassini (Saturn), Hubble (Beyond Our Solar System), Juno (Jupiter), Voyager 1 (Our Solar System), Voyager 2 (Our Solar System)

Short Description: In this series of activities, students compare the weather, plot the movement of weather systems, and observe a fundamental motion of air responsible for certain large cloud formations on Earth and other planets, and report these observations.


Magnetic Globe
Topic: Magnetospheres: Planetary Shields
Grade Level: 5-8
Body: Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: Students use a magnet inside a small globe and clamped staples to model the magnetic field lines of the Earth.


Magnetic Math
Topic: Magnetospheres: Planetary Shields
Grade Level: 9-12
Body: Our Solar System, Sun, Mercury, Earth, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune
Mission: Cassini (Saturn), Juno (Jupiter), MESSENGER (Mercury)

Short Description: This book contains hands-on exercises and math problems which allow students to explore magnetism and magnetic fields. The activities include drawing and geometric construction, and introduce students in the use of simple algebra to quantitatively examine magnetic forces, energy, and magnetic field lines and their mathematical structure.


Magnetic Sensor Measurements with a Graphing Calculator
Topic: Magnetospheres: Planetary Shields
Grade Level: 9-12
Body: Our Solar System, Sun, Mercury, Earth, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune
Mission: Cassini (Saturn), Earth Science (Earth), InSight (Mars), Juno (Jupiter)

Short Description: This activity uses magnetic field sensors with the "Texas Instrument" Graphing Calculator and CBL to measure and plot magnetic fields. This allows the student to prove that magnetic fields decrease as the negative cube of the distance.


Magnetism and Electromagnetism
Topic: Magnetospheres: Planetary Shields
Body: Our Solar System, Sun, Mercury, Earth, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune
Mission: Cassini (Saturn), Earth Science (Earth), Juno (Jupiter), MESSENGER (Mercury)

Short Description: In this review of basic magnetism, students map field lines around bar magnets to visualize the magnetic dipole field, and create their own electromagnet using copper wire, battery and a pencil to learn that electric currents create magnetic fields.


Making and Mapping a Volcano
Topic: Volcanism in the Solar System
Grade Level: 5-8
Body: Earth, Mars
Mission: 2001 Mars Odyssey (Mars), Mars Recon Orbiter (Mars)

Short Description: After each of a series of vinegar/baking soda eruptions, students use Play-Doh to mark where the lava flowed. In teams they examine the stratigraphy and map the flows.


Mapping Magnetic Influence
Topic: Magnetospheres: Planetary Shields
Grade Level: 5-8, 9-12
Body: Sun, Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth), SOHO (Comets)

Short Description: This lesson is designed to allow your students to explore magnets and develop an operational definition of a magnet "field" and an operational definition for a magnetic "pole."


MY NASA DATA Lessons
Topic: Ice in the Solar System, Water in the Solar System, Windy Worlds: Gas Giants, Atmospheres and Weather
Grade Level: K-4, 5-8, 9-12
Body: Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: MY NASA DATA microsets are created using data from NASA Earth science satellite missions and provide information on Earth's atmosphere, biosphere, cryosphere, ocean, and land surface. There are a variety of lessons using these data.


Observing, Describing and Identifying Clouds
Topic: Windy Worlds: Gas Giants, Atmospheres and Weather
Grade Level: K-4
Body: Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: Students observe and sketch clouds, describing their forms. They generate their own descriptions and then move toward building a more scientific vocabulary. They then correlate their descriptions with the standard classifications.


Plasma Wars
Topic: Magnetospheres: Planetary Shields
Grade Level: 5-8
Body: Our Solar System, Sun, Earth
Mission: Genesis (Our Solar System)

Short Description: Students use iron powder to model the solar wind, moving under pressure created by a pipette, encountering and interacting with an enclosed magnetic field. The student text introduces the idea of planetary diversity not only in the shape, size, and strength of the planetary magnetospheres, but also in the types and sources of the high-energy charged particles that occupy them.


Rock Star Precipitation
Topic: Water in the Solar System
Grade Level: K-4
Body: Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: Student predict the best times for rock stars to perform outdoors, using monthly precipitation data from around the world.


S'COOL Lesson Plans
Topic: Windy Worlds: Gas Giants, Atmospheres and Weather
Grade Level: K-4, 5-8
Body: Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: In the S'COOL project students gather data to help NASA study the ways in which clouds may affect the Earth's climate. The project includes a large number of lesson plans on clouds, temperatures and weather; most are geared toward elementary students. Check Educator Resources for S'COOL materials, presentations and more.


Scale Model of Sun and Earth
Topic: The Sun, Transits and Eclipses
Grade Level: K-4
Body: Our Solar System, Sun, Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth), Heliophysics (Sun)

Short Description: This activity explores the relative size of sun and Earth, as well as the distance between them.


Space Weather Action Center
Topic: Magnetospheres: Planetary Shields, The Sun, Transits and Eclipses
Grade Level: 5-8, 9-12
Body: Our Solar System, Sun, Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth), Heliophysics (Sun)

Short Description: Imagine being able to monitor the progress of an entire solar storm from the time it erupts from our Sun until it sweeps past our small planet effecting enormous changes in our magnetic field. Now imagine being able to do all of this from your Space Weather Action Center (S.W.A.C.)! By following the basic steps in the Instructional Guide your class will soon be on its way to accessing, analyzing and recording NASA satellite and observatory data.


SpaceMath: The Transit of Mercury
Topic: Space Math, The Sun, Transits and Eclipses
Grade Level: 9-12
Body: Sun, Mercury, Earth
Mission: Heliophysics (Sun)

Short Description: As seen from Earth, the planet Mercury occasionally passes across the face of the sun; an event that astronomers call a transit. From images taken by the Hinode satellite, students will create a model of the solar disk to the same scale as the image, and calculate the distance to the sun.


Summit Up -- Comparing Volcanos on Mars and Earth
Topic: Volcanism in the Solar System
Grade Level: K-4, 5-8
Body: Earth, Mars
Mission: 2001 Mars Odyssey (Mars), Mars Recon Orbiter (Mars)

Short Description: Summit Up is a 20 minute activity in which children make paper models to scale of the tallest volcanic mountains on Earth and Mars and discover a big difference between volcanoes on these two planets.


Terrabagga Activity Using a Magnetometer
Topic: Magnetospheres: Planetary Shields
Grade Level: 5-8
Body: Mercury, Earth, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune
Mission: Dawn (Dwarf Planets), Earth Science (Earth), InSight (Mars), MAVEN (Mars)

Short Description: This activity models real-world uses of a magnetometer instrument. Students will see how magnetic fields of the planets and moons are found.


The Classroom Magnetometer
Topic: Magnetospheres: Planetary Shields
Grade Level: 5-8
Body: Our Solar System, Sun, Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: Students build and operate a simple magnetometer using a soda bottle and a bar magnet, and use it to monitor changes in Earth's magnetic field.


The Goldilocks Principle: A Model of Atmospheric Gases
Topic: Windy Worlds: Gas Giants, Atmospheres and Weather
Grade Level: 5-8
Body: Venus, Earth, Mars
Mission: Akatsuki (Venus), Earth Science (Earth), MAVEN (Mars), Venus Express (Venus)

Short Description: This activity introduces students to the atmospheric differences between the three "sister" planets in a graphic and hands-on way, using jelly beans or cotton balls to model different atmospheric gases. Students will use this understanding later as they begin to appreciate the scope and importance of the greenhouse effect on Earth.


The Magnetometer
Topic: Magnetospheres: Planetary Shields
Grade Level: K-4
Body: Mercury, Earth, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: Students build an instrument capable of detecting a magnetic field and magnetic polarity.


The Solar Wind Tunnel: A Comet Borrelly Interactive
Topic: Magnetospheres: Planetary Shields
Grade Level: 5-8
Body: Our Solar System, Sun, Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Asteroids, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, Dwarf Planets, Comets
Mission: Rosetta (Comets), SOHO (Comets), Wind (Our Solar System)

Short Description: Students compare their observations of the solar wind's interaction with magnetized planets, non-magnetized planets, comets, and asteroids, and record their observations online.


The Water Cycle - Now You See It, Now You Don't
Topic: Water in the Solar System
Grade Level: K-4
Body: Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: Elementary students learn about the relationship between temperature and condensation.


Time Lineup
Topic: Evolving Worlds: Planets, Like People, Grow and Change Over Time
Grade Level: 5-8, 9-12
Body: Our Solar System, Sun, Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Asteroids, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, Dwarf Planets, Comets, Kuiper Belt & Oort Cloud, Earth's Moon
Mission: ARTEMIS (Earth's Moon), Cassini (Saturn), Dawn (Dwarf Planets), Galileo (Jupiter), Hubble (Beyond Our Solar System), InSight (Mars), Juno (Jupiter), LADEE (Earth's Moon), Lunar Recon Orbiter (Earth's Moon), MSL / Curiosity (Mars), MAVEN (Mars), MESSENGER (Mercury), Viking 01 (Mars), Viking 02 (Mars), Voyager 1 (Our Solar System), Voyager 2 (Our Solar System), WISE (Our Solar System)

Short Description: Students work in groups or as a class to determine the order of events that formed our solar system. This is an excellent activity to begin discussion of events that shaped the solar system and how Earth's geosphere and biosphere have changed -- in an interrelated manner -- through time.


Tracking a Solar Storm
Topic: Ancient Astronomers / Modern Tools, Magnetospheres: Planetary Shields
Body: Our Solar System, Sun, Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth), Heliophysics (Sun)

Short Description: This is a pair of high school-level workbooks featuring advanced problems in mathematics and science that are based on experiments performed with the IMAGE satellite.


Using MY NASA DATA to Determine Volcanic Activity
Topic: Volcanism in the Solar System
Grade Level: 9-12
Body: Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: Students use NASA satellite data of optical depth as a tool to determine volcanic activity on Reunion Island during 2000-2001.


Volcanos are a Blast: Working with Simple Equations
Topic: Space Math, Volcanism in the Solar System
Grade Level: 9-12
Body: Earth, Earth's Moon
Mission: Cassini (Saturn), Earth Science (Earth), Lunar Recon Orbiter (Earth's Moon)

Short Description: Students examine the famous Krakatoa explosion, asteroid impacts on the moon and geysers on Enceladus (a moon of Saturn) using three equations that describe the height of the plume and initial velocity to answer questions about the speed of the debris and terminal height.


Water Quality at Earth Observatory
Topic: Water in the Solar System
Grade Level: 9-12
Body: Earth
Mission: Earth Science (Earth)

Short Description: These citizen science activities could be used in a high school classroom to gather and submit data on local water quality, and to analyze satellite data.


What Makes Day and Night? The Earth's Rotation
Topic: Ancient Astronomers / Modern Tools, The Sun, Transits and Eclipses
Grade Level: K-4
Body: Sun, Earth
Mission: Heliophysics (Sun)

Short Description: In this demonstration of day and night, students learn kinesthetically as they take on the role of the Earth orbiting the rotating sun.


What Makes Shadows? Observing and Drawing Shadows
Topic: Ancient Astronomers / Modern Tools, The Sun, Transits and Eclipses
Grade Level: K-4
Body: Sun, Earth
Mission: Heliophysics (Sun)

Short Description: Students learn about shadows as they observe and draw the shadow of a classmate.


What's the Difference?
Topic: Investigating Our Planetary Family Tree
Grade Level: 9-12
Body: Earth, Mars
Mission: InSight (Mars), MAVEN (Mars)

Short Description: This is a free multimedia software application that facilitates scientific analysis by allowing virtually any pictures, graphics, animations, and movies to be compared side by side. The solar system dataset contains comparisons of the planets and major moons within our solar system. Users can upload graphical, animated, interactive, textual, and audio-formatted content into the categories and attributes grid and then supplement their data with customized multiple choice and summary assessment tests.


Why Follow the Water
Topic: Astrobiology: Got Life?, Water in the Solar System
Grade Level: 5-8, 9-12
Body: Earth, Mars
Mission: Earth Science (Earth), Mars Recon Orbiter (Mars), Phoenix (Mars)

Short Description: Students investigate several physical properties of liquid water to better understand why we think water is important for life. An extension activity investigates the connection between liquid water and plant productivity on Earth.

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