Earth and Space Science

Module 1: Teacher's Guide

Time: 8 days, 30-45 minutes/day

Overview: Students explore the importance of mountains, how mountains are made, and graphical representations of mountains on maps.

Objectives: To spark student interest in the investigation of mountains and to increase familiarity with mountain characteristics and formation.

National Standards Addressed (attached below)

Seasonal Sun

Challenge older students to explore the sun's seasonal movements by determining the average height of the sun at noon in each of the school year seasons. Establish a viewing spot where observers can stand each time.

Curriculum Connections

Investigating Heat and Light: The Greenhouse Effect

Most garden coverups operate on the same basic principle. Radiant (light) energy from the sun can pass through transparent and semi-transparent materials. When the light arrives inside a closed space, it is absorbed by the surfaces within, then radiated again as thermal (heat) energy. The heat energy is less able to pass through the materials, so heat is trapped inside.

Making Weather-Tracking Tools

Measuring Changes, Sleuthing Seasons, Testing Lore

Weather: sometimes we don't like it, but we certainly can't live without it. The general climate and more immediate weather affect how we live and what we eat. But that's not the half of it. These factors also influence the livelihoods of all the players, plant and animal, in the web of life.

Rooting for Space Plants


Discovering an efficient way to grow plants in space is critical for expansion into the extraterrestrial frontier. Space travelers will need a reliable source of renewable food and oxygen to survive over long periods of time. Traditional gardening techniques are not a good match for conditions in spacecraft and space stations so scientists are challenged with creating new growing systems. Many of these systems draw on principles related to hydroponics.

Flower Sundial

Question: My kids want to plant a flower sundial, where the flowers are planted according to what time of day they open, so that the blooming progresses around the circle throughout the day. Do you have any information?

Homemade Weather Station

Question: What would my family need to make a simple garden weather station?
Answer: Keeping track of the weather helps gardeners know when to plant and how often to water. A basic weather station should include: a minimum-maximum thermometer, a rain gauge, a wind vane, and a record book.

Let There Be Light

All green plants require light to drive the process of photosynthesis. The higher the light level, the potentially larger your hydroponic harvest, as long as you're adequately meeting other basic needs. If your plants are getting leggy or not growing, the light source is the first factor to check. Keep a close eye on how your plants are responding to light and adjust exposure accordingly.

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