Lesson plans, interactive activities, and other resources to help students learn about and explore our solar system
Scholastic teamed up with the American Museum of Natural History to offer students the exciting study of "Gravity, Orbits, and Collisions," an action-packed part of the “Journey into Space” learning project. Dr. Michael Shara, an astrophysicist from the American Museum of Natural History, shares what gravity is. Then, through images, text, audio, and interactive activities, students explore how gravity keeps planets in orbit and causes space collisions. The activity is divided into two levels, for younger and older students.
Level 1 (grades 3–6)
- Students can play our fun Moon Olympics to find out what it would be like to play sports — from weightlifting to diving — on the moon.
- Investigate challenges students to examine the planets in our solar system, using Scholastic’s facts and illustrations.
Level 2 (grades 6–10)
- Activate Asteroids! lets students experiment with speed and angle to direct the course of an asteroid!
- In Investigate, students can check out photos, artists’ renderings, articles, and simulations to discover what happens when space objects collide.
Both levels feature "Words to Know" with their definitions, from “asteroids” to “galaxy.”
While participating in the “Journey Into Space” activity, students will:
- Learn grade-appropriate facts about the topic
- Build scientific thinking skills as they follow a guided path of inquiry and analysis
- Learn how professional scientists and experts conduct investigations and present findings
- Practice reading strategies and skills needed to decode and comprehend nonfiction and informational texts
- Develop skills for writing about research-based topics
- Strengthen research and critical reasoning skills as they gather, assess, and use data