Ed. Davis, P. (Oct. 1998). NASA. Retrieved Oct. 4,
2012, from http://solarsystem.nasa.gov/planets/index.cfm
Grade Level: 6
Brief Description of Activity:
Students will go to the assigned website:
where they will learn about the varying planets and their unique characteristics
using whichever feature they choose on the site (listed info, manipulative
tools, virtual space travel, etc). The students will record the information they
find in digital or paper form. After finding all of the needed information,
students may test their planet knowledge by doing a “planetary puzzle” test,
available under the “kids” tab.
General Learner Outcome:
Observe, describe and interpret the movement of
objects in the sky; and identify pattern and order in these movements.
Specific Learner Outcome:
Recognize that the other eight known planets,
which revolve around the Sun, have characteristics and surface conditions that
are different from Earth; and identify examples of those differences.
C.1.1.1. access and retrieve appropriate information from
electronic sources for a specific inquiry.
C.1.2.1. organize information gathered from the Internet, or an electronic
source, by selecting and recording the data in logical files or categories; and
by communicating effectively, through appropriate forms, such as speeches,
reports and multimedia presentations, applying information technologies that
serve particular audiences and purposes.
C.4.1.1. follow a plan to complete and inquiry.
C.7.1.3. draw conclusions from organized information.
P.5.1.2. access hyper linked sites on an intranet or the Internet.
Rationale for Computer Integration:
The use of computers and internet have
been integrated to get students excited about planets and their characteristics
by actually seeing them in vivid pictures and other portrayals such as a feature
akin to virtual space travel, which allows students to feel they are maneuvering
a space craft near the varying planets and personally exploring them, collecting
the information they are required to find. This is a fun and simple activity,
which achieves the lesson outcome in a fun, interactive and unforgettable way.
The information will become much more real than figures and facts on a chart and
allow for many different learning styles. They can easily test their knowledge
(formative assessment for me) on the same website. If some students complete the
assignment sooner than others, there are many other outlets of exploration that
they can move on to.
Search strategies employed:
At first I did a basic search on Google,
typing in ‘sky science planets’. This got me a ton of information and nothing I
could use. It was too wide a selection. To narrow it down some, I tried a basic
search on WolframAlpha, but found that it didn’t exactly suit what I was looking
for. I then tried Advance Google search. Using the “3M” list, I put in:
All these words: sky, planets
This exact word of phrase: "grade 6
Any of these words: interactive OR online
None of these words:
Opening the first hit, it wasn’t what I was looking for so I went back and
skimmed the second hit. It sounded helpful so I opened up the site. This turned
out to be a website with various sky science websites (Learn NC). I found one
that described what I was looking for (Solar System Exploration) and found the
link to be the perfect tool for planet research.