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Tracking the Summer Solstice

Try this small experiment to observe how the Sun reaches a higher point in the sky as the summer solstice approaches. Just follow these steps:

1. Starting today at 12 noon*, measure the length of a shadow cast by a fixed object (like a flagpole).
2. At noon tomorrow, measure the same shadow again.
3. Continue to measure the shadow each day at noon (weather and weekend interruptions are okay) for a couple of weeks.
4. Are your measurements the same each day or do they differ?
5. If the shadow is shorter each day, does that mean that the Sun is higher in the sky or lower?

*Be sure to make your measurements carefully at the same time each day. 12 noon is best, but other times will work.

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    Scholastic Encyclopedia of Space

    Scholastic Encyclopedia of Space

    by Jacqueline Mitton;Simon Mitton

    On a dark;cloudless night;you can see hundreds of stars in the sky and look billions of miles out into space. It is the greatest show on Earth. But what;exactly;is out there?

    In this new;authoritative encyclopedia;students of the vast unknown can find out about the big bang;and the early universe. Explained here are the mysteries of all kinds of galaxies—spiral;elliptical;colliding;active;with quasars;with black holes;as well as stars—giant;dwarf;variable;double;pulsars;black hole stars;novas;birth and death;and our Sun;planets in our solar system—their orbits;craters;volcanoes;atmospheres;interiors;weather;rings;moons;asteroids;comets;meteors;meteorites;meteoroids;the Kuiper Belt;the Oort cloud;constellations;phases of the Moon;eclipses
    ...and how we know so much... astronomers
    skywatching—binoculars;small telescopes;sky maps;observatories—optical telescopes;radio telescopes;infrared telescopes;microwave telescopes;space telescopes
    space exploration—robot explorers;probes;space stations;orbiters;fly-by missions;landers;manned missions.

    So next time you gaze into the night;the greatest show on Earth will be even greater than before. As the stars whirl slowly across the sky;you will recognize Orion;the hunter;with his star-studded belt. With your binoculars;you will see the mountains on the Moon and the red glow of Mars. And you will know that far in the distance planets are orbiting our Sun and other suns;that new stars are being born and old ones are dying;that our knowledge of space;along with the universe itself;is expanding every day.

    $7.46 You save: 25%
    Paperback Book | Grades 5-7
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    Scholastic Encyclopedia of Space
    Grades 5-7 $7.46
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    by Elaine Landau


    •     Superb age-appropriate introduction to curriculum-relevant subjects
    •     Covers all studies, from Animals to American History, Geography to Science
    •     "Words to Know" glossary clarifies subject-specific vocabulary
    •     "Learning More" section encourages independent study
    •     Index makes navigating subject matter easy


      11/1/07 School Library Journal
      Featuring a new author and a colorful redesign, these volumes expertly update Larry Dane Brimner's 1998 editions, and also add a title that looks past Pluto into the Kuiper Belt, the Oort Cloud, and the search for extrasolar planets. Each one matches a clearly reasoned, matter-of-fact text to plenty of small but sharply reproduced color photos and pages of new or restated facts, and rounded off with multimedia lists of audience-appropriate further resources. Despite minor bobbles (for instance, Landau assigns the space probe New Horizons different speeds in Pluto and Beyond Pluto), these remain the gold standard for post-picture-book nonfiction, and should be first purchases for any library that serves fledgling readers.


      $18.20 You save: 30%
      Library Binding | Grades 3-5
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      Educators Only
    Grades 3-5 $18.20
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