Lesson plan

Planets

Summary
Make a scale model of the solar system planets, then model how surface features of planets formed.
Science content
Earth/Space: Sun, Moon, Solar System, Universe (1, 4, 6)
Earth/Space: Extreme Environments, Space Exploration (6)
Procedure

Introduce the solar system and how it formed:
The solar system started as a cloud of gas and dust particles. Even these tiny particles have gravity and so are attracted to each other. The centre of the cloud got dense and hot enough for nuclear reactions to start (H2 fusing together), and our sun to be born.
The remaining gas and dust was slowly attracted into the planets. The closer planets, with the warmth of the sun evaporating any water, were made from metal and rock. The outer planets, far enough from the sun for ice and small molecules to stick around, formed the large gas giants.

Make a scale model of solar system across the school grounds.

Model the geologic features of planets, and find out how they might have formed.

Notes

Lesson 4/7 at Strathcona.

Grades taught
Gr 6
Gr 7
Teaching Site
Strathcona Elementary