This semester of science focuses on a linear exploration of our universe. Students begin by exploring the history of astronomical thought, our current understanding of the universe, the structure of the solar system, and ending with a study of our home planet, Earth.

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This page provides information about the overall scope and sequence for this astronomy unit. It provides a detailed overview of the structure of the unit, the number of days spent on each lesson, and the standards met by the unit. It also provides information about content integration with art, mathematics, and history.
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This is an introductory lesson, images and follow-up work to the Unit: A Tour of the Universe. The lesson includes information about the Scientific Revolution as well as an introduction to the thematic question, how do science and mathematics contribute to progress?
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Aristotle and Ptolemy

by Meredith Beaton

This is an introductory lesson, images and follow-up work to the Unit: A Tour of the Universe. The lesson includes information about the geocentric model of the universe proposed by Aristotle, the "problem" of retrograde motion, and the attempt to maintain the accuracy of the geocentric model by the use of epicycles.
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Retrograde Motion Activity

by Meredith Beaton

This lesson is used to supplement students' understanding of retrograde motion and visualize why outer planets appear to move "in reverse."
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This lesson introduces students to the Renaissance and Leonardo da Vinci in order to provide a context for the scientific revolution and the paradigm shift from a geocentric model to a heliocentric model of the solar system. Students are asked to explore their own interests in the assessment by studying, replicating, and providing historical context for an invention or painting by da Vinci.
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Nicolaus Copernicus

by Meredith Beaton

This lesson includes a brief introduction to Nicolaus Copernicus. It primarily focuses on his contributions to astronomy and why society believed his theories were incorrect. Because Copernicus was the first astronomer to really solidify a hypothesis about the heliocentric solar system, his contributions are considered the starting point of the Scientific Revolution.
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This lesson and assessment are designed to provide students with historical background and information about the astronomical contributions of Tycho Brahe, Johaness Kepler, and Galileo Galilei. Based on the contributions of Kepler and Galileo, the Copernican model of the heliocentric solar system was readily accepted as the accurate structure of the solar system.
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This lesson and follow-up introduces students to our current understanding of the Universe, the structure of our solar system, and basic planetary motion.
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This lesson and follow-up presents students with information about the two ways Earth moves through the solar system as well as our position in the solar system and asks students to explore how our movement and/or position effect the seasons we experience on Earth.
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The Solar System

by Meredith Beaton

This folder contains lessons, images, assessments, and activities for the solar system. The goal of this series is to introduce students to various objects in our solar system and provide students with an understanding the magnitude of our solar system.
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Motion

by Meredith Beaton

This lesson and assessment introduce students to the ideas of motion through their intuitive understanding of speed, velocity, and acceleration.
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Newton and Laws of Motion

by Meredith Beaton

This folder contains three lessons about Newton, Newton's three Laws of Motion, and the Universal Law of Gravitation. Additionally, it contains assessments for these concepts as well as a bottle rocket project.
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Earth's Atmosphere

by Meredith Beaton

This folder contains a lesson, images, and an assessment about Earth's atmosphere. Up to this point, student's have been studying and working with Newton's Laws of motion, and this lesson, in particular, answers the question, "What is a rocket pushing against when it is launched?"
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Adventures in Space

by Meredith Beaton

This folder contains lessons, images, and assessments relating to the space program in the United States, the space race between the US and Russia, current space exploration, and the search for extraterrestrial life.
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Centripetal Motion

by Meredith Beaton

This folder contains lessons, assessments, resources, activities, and images to support a brief study of centripetal motion and centrifugal force. These resources can be used in support of the "Movement of Earth" lessons (refer to the "Centripetal Motion Cont'd Impressionistic" lesson) or after studying Newton's Laws of Motion in the "Motion" lessons (refer to the "Centripetal Motion Cont'd Physics" lesson). These lessons are interesting and fun for students as they rely on students' intuitive understanding of motion, simple experiments, and the excitement of roller coasters.
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Ellipses

by Meredith Beaton

This lesson and assessment introduce students to ellipses, their properties, and the connections to planetary motion.
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Measuring the Earth

by Meredith Beaton

This folder contains a lesson, images, and assessment includes information on Eratosthenes, measuring the circumference of the Earth, and evidence that the Earth is round.
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