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Our Evolving Understanding of the Solar System: New Data, New Ideas
Organizations & Clubs


These recommendations are tailored for organizations and clubs such as libraries, planetariums, science centers, astronomy clubs, and scout troops.

Children of all ages can make observations, gather data and form ideas based on their observations. Consider inviting a guest speaker to talk about how our understanding of the solar system, of planets or of the nature of life has changed due to new research and new data. When looking for a potential speaker, local scientists (check out astronomy and geology departments at nearby universities) are a good place to start.

Try holding an evening telescope observing session. Consider getting in touch with local astronomical societies, planetariums and museums, and NASA's Solar System Ambassadors -- ask them to join your events and share their experiences or resources with the children.

Be sure to submit photographs, artwork, music, or words of your community enjoying your activities to Share Your Stories.

Activities

Activity Description
What is a Planet? Children learn about the characteristics of planets, comets, asteroids, and trans-Neptunian objects through a classification activity. Students can then apply what they have learned by participating in a formal debate about a solar system object discovered by the New Horizons spacecraft and by defining the term "planet."
Exploring Crustal Materials from a Mystery Planet 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.
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Last Updated: 16 Apr 2014