|COSI on Wheels presents 'Astounding Astronomy'|
|Thursday, November 21, 2013 9:27 PM|
BY STEPHANIE GROVES
The 45-minute interactive assembly took students from their home planet on a journey to the sun and other planets and objects of the amazing solar system. Students explored the incredible variety of planetary environments through a demonstration of the weight of different planet’s atmospheres, learning about remote operated vehicles (Rovers) and what elements are found in meteors.
During the assembly, the following concepts will be explored:
• The sizes and distances between the planets in our solar system
• The electromagnetic spectrum
• The extreme cold of the outer planets and deep space
• How the Earth is the only planet we know of that contains life
Following the assembly, students participated in fun, engaging hands-on activities that encourages students’ development of science process skills including:
• Alien Eyes: students experiment with colored filters and learn how astronomers use them to understand astronomical objects,
• Planetary Rotation,: students will gain a better understanding of the forces that cause the planets to spin,
• What’s Holding You Down?: students will discover that objects weigh different amounts on different celestial bodies,
• It’s Just a Phase: students will manipulate a model of the sun, earth and moon to get an understanding of the relationship between them,
• Spec-tacular: students will identify the composition of distant stars using spectroscopy,
• Time Warp: students will experience the relationship between a planet’s distance from the sun and the speed it travels in its orbit. Students will also learn that the length of time it takes to orbit the sun (a year) differs from planet to planet,
• Remotely Operated Vehicles: students will experience how scientists explore other worlds through remotely operated vehicles,
• Under Pressure: students will observe the physiological effects on an object in a vacuum, and discover how that relates to the atmospheric pressure found on planets.
• Seeing Stars: students will better understand the stars they see at night and how astronomers use constellations to study space.