Category: Science: Astronomy Unit

Curiosity Landed Safely on Mars! 0

Curiosity Landed Safely on Mars!

I’m adding this to the top of the post a day or so later. If you are interested in seeing the images being sent back from Mars, you can go to the NASA image gallery. Look for the small caption that says “slideshow” and you’ll be able to see the enlarged images such as this one which shows Curiosity’s main target, Mt. Sharp.  The Curiosity team hopes to drive the...

Don’t forget the Mars Rover, Curiosity is About to Land! 0

Don’t forget the Mars Rover, Curiosity is About to Land!

Curiosity is scheduled to arrive on Mars late Sunday night (10:31 PST, Aug 5) or early Monday (1:31am EST, Aug. 6) depending on where you live. View it live at NASA TV.  The Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity rover took nearly 36 weeks (254 days) to travel from Earth to Mars. Its mission is to continue the robotic exploration of Mars assessing whether Mars ever had an environment that could support life...

Learn All About Mars, “Curiosity” is Landing Soon! 0

Learn All About Mars, “Curiosity” is Landing Soon!

We have started getting excited about the Mars Space Laboratory, Curiosity which has been enroute to Mars for about eight months now.  We started doing some activities to learn about Mars. I wanted to post this early enough that you could get your child excited about the upcoming landing too. It’s a little less than two weeks away! The new Mars Rover, a space laboratory called Curiosity is set to...

First Commercial Spacecraft Docks at the Space Station 0

First Commercial Spacecraft Docks at the Space Station

We got really interested in the future of space exploration when the space shuttle Discovery flew by our house back in April. I dedicated a couple of blog posts to it because the kids and I were so excited.  It was the end of an era for the Space Shuttle Program.   A new chapter in space exploration has been in the works for a number of years now.  Yesterday the first commercial spacecraft...

The Space Shuttle Blasts by our House! 1

The Space Shuttle Blasts by our House!

We were outside this morning on the lookout for the Space Shuttle Discovery.  We were so excited to have it fly by at tree-line! Naturally we had to take a million pictures as it flew by! A little while later we went inside to watch the drama unfold on NASA TV as it landed at Dulles Airport! Pictures courtesy of  NASA TV. We talked a lot about the space shuttle...

moon-lapbook 6

Astronomy Unit: The Moon (Day 2)

On this day we read about the Moon and did the lapbook components to add to our science notebook. What’s perfect about these lapbooks for us right now is the writing is not overwhelming and  reinforces the main points we’ve gone over.  We used the Moon — Speedy Lapbook by Homeschool Bits (which was quite inexpensive). Moon Craters: Our activity that day was to talk about why the surface of...

moon-orbit 8

Astronomy Unit: The Moon (Day 1)

The moon is very far away (225,622 miles to 252,088 miles depending on its position in its elliptical orbit around the Earth). NASA had to be very careful about the calculations they made to send someone to the moon especially since the moon is a moving target.  In this activity, the kids are trying to hit the moon (a nut suspended on a string) that is swinging back and forth....

inner-outer-planets 8

Astronomy Unit: Inner and Outer Planets, The Asteroid Belt

We seem to talk about the planets about once a year, don’t we?  This time we did a little activity that showed the four inner, rocky planets, the asteroid belt and the four outer planets, the gas giants. In this picture you can see that the asteroid belt has two layers as well! We did the inner and out planets speedy lapbook by homeschool bits (25cents) — and even ED...

refraction 1

Astronomy Unit: Refraction, Vacuum, Saturn’s Rings

The kids have been begging for some hands-on science experiments. I have a bigger unit planned, but since December and January will be a bit broken up as far as our schooling goes, I decided to delve into a short unit with lots of experiments based on one of Janice VanCleave’s books (202 Oozing, Bubbling, Dripping, Bouncing, Experiments) and lots of notebook/lapbook pages from Homeschool Bits. Here’s some of what...