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Lesson Title: Comet on a Stick
May 11, 2012

Unit: Earth and Space Science - Year of the Solar System

Grade Levels: 7-9

Connection To Curriculum: Science and Technology

Teacher Prep Time: 2 hours

Lesson Time Needed: 1.5 hours

Complexity: Basic

Keywords: solar system, small bodies, coma, tail, nucleus, deep impact, scientific methods, solar wind, sun, orbits, Kuiper Belt, oort cloud

Materials:

One 2" styrofoam or other ball or an 8 ½" X 11" piece of paper
Two 1-2 ft lengths of mylar gift strips, raffia or ribbon
One 5" strip of tape
One wooden skewer (shish kabab type)
An electric hairdryer/electrical power available
One marker pen
Gather household or art supplies for students to use to design their own comet models
 

Description
Students strengthen their concepts of a comet by designing and building a model of a comet emulating a process that scientists and engineers follow on all missions.

Objectives
Students will:
• Develop a model of a comet.
• Utilize the same thought processes as a science and engineering team to design a comet mission.

First page of Comet On A Stick

Lesson Guide
Comet on a Stick Lesson
[115KB PDF file]

 

 

Lesson Activities and Sequence
Comet on a Stick Activity
Students strengthen their concepts of a comet by designing and building a model of a comet emulating a process that scientists and engineers follow on all missions.
Student Worksheet

Keywords: solar system, small bodies, coma, tail, nucleus, deep impact, scientific methods, solar wind, sun, orbits, Kuiper Belt, oort cloud

National Standards:

National Science Education Standards, NSTA
Science as Inquiry
• Understanding of scientific concepts.
• Understanding of the nature of science.

Science and Technology
• Abilities to distinguish between natural objects and objects made by humans.
• Abilities of technological design.

ISTE NETS and Performance Indicators for Students, ISTE
Creativity and Innovation
• Use models and simulations to explore complex systems and issues.
 

 

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Page Last Updated: July 28th, 2013
Page Editor: NASA Administrator