Classroom Resources

Monthly Themes

Space

Writing Prompt

Story:

Have students write a story set in the solar system or beyond.

Activities

Grades K–2: Science
In the Right Place

Have students identify objects in outer space and learn to differentiate between objects in our atmosphere and in space.

Grades K–2: Science/Art
Star Stories

Have a class discussion about what a constellation is. Then have students create their own constellations.

  • Constellations
  • http://rip.physics.unk.edu/Astronomy/Constellations(k-2).html
Grades K–2: Science
I See the Moon…

Observing the phases of the Moon teaches the first lessons about the relationship between Earth, the Moon, and the Sun. Students will color four different moon phases and then line up in sequential order of the phases.

Grades K–3: Art
Look! I'm an Astronaut!

Do any of your students want to be astronauts? Find out what they look like in space suits.

Grades K–5: Science/Language Arts
Hop Aboard

Students can learn about different kinds of space vehicles by coloring and labeling various vehicles. Older students can write a fictional space story, using a colored picture as a prompt.

Grades K–8: Science/Art
Drawing Room

Launch your students' celestial imaginations by having them draw, color, and label space-related images such as rockets, planets, space stations, constellations, comets, and astronauts. Students' work can be collected to make a class booklet.

Grades 1–8: Science
Quizzes

Test students' knowledge about space.

  • The Solar System (grades 1–2) (PDF file)
  • http://www.eduplace.com/monthlytheme/may/pdf/space_1-2_quiz.pdf
  • The Solar System Answer Key (grades 1–2) (PDF file)
  • http://www.eduplace.com/monthlytheme/may/pdf/space_1-2_quiz_key.pdf
  • The Solar System (grades 3–5) (PDF file)
  • http://www.eduplace.com/monthlytheme/may/pdf/space_3-5_quiz.pdf
  • The Solar System Answer Key (grades 3–5) (PDF file)
  • http://www.eduplace.com/monthlytheme/may/pdf/space_3-5_quiz_key.pdf
  • Stars and Galaxies (grades 6–8) (PDF file)
  • http://www.eduplace.com/monthlytheme/may/pdf/space_6-8_quiz.pdf
  • Stars and Galaxies Answer Key (grades 6–8) (PDF file)
  • http://www.eduplace.com/monthlytheme/may/pdf/space_6-8_quiz_key.pdf
Grades 2–3: Science
Solar Eclipse

Help students understand what happens during a solar eclipse.

  • Moon Shadows
  • http://www.galaxy.net/%7Ek12/space/shadow.shtml
Grades 2–3: Science
Gravity Experiment

In this activity, students will see that gravity keeps Earth and the Moon together and that, without gravity, the Moon would fly away from Earth in a straight line.

Grades 2–6: Language Arts
Stamp of Honor

Invite each of the students to honor a favorite astronaut by creating a postage stamp highlighting the person's accomplishments. On the front, students can place an image of the person or draw a picture. On the back, students can list important details, including dates and other facts about the astronaut.

Grades 2–8: Language Arts
Kids in Space

Have students produce and direct their very own adventure movie featuring kids living on a space station. Have students use drawings or pictures and fill in the frames to create a story. Then have students write a script to accompany the film. You can hold an awards night to present their work.

  • Filmstrip (PDF file)
  • http://www.eduplace.com/monthlytheme/pdf/filmstrip.pdf
Grades 2–8: Language Arts/Science
Word Finds

Have students find space words hidden in a puzzle.

  • Space (grades 2–3) (PDF file)
  • http://www.eduplace.com/monthlytheme/may/pdf/space_easy_wf.pdf
  • Space Answer Key (grades 2–3) (PDF file)
  • http://www.eduplace.com/monthlytheme/may/pdf/space_easy_wf_key.pdf
  • Space (grades 4–5) (PDF file)
  • http://www.eduplace.com/monthlytheme/may/pdf/space_med_wf.pdf
  • Space Answer Key (grades 4–5) (PDF file)
  • http://www.eduplace.com/monthlytheme/may/pdf/space_med_wf_key.pdf
  • Space (grades 6–8) (PDF file)
  • http://www.eduplace.com/monthlytheme/may/pdf/space_hard_wf.pdf
  • Space Answer Key (grades 6–8) (PDF file)
  • http://www.eduplace.com/monthlytheme/may/pdf/space_hard_wf_key.pdf
Grades 2–8: Social Studies
On a Clear Day

The view from space is spectacular. Have students see what their city looks like from high above planet Earth. Then have students use an actual map to locate the latitude and longitude position given with the image.

Grades 3–5: Language Arts
Poetry That's Out of This World

Have students explore the poetry of space by writing a celestial poem.

Grades 3–5: Language Arts
Mnemonic Order

“My Very Excellent Mother Just Sent Us Nine Pizzas.” Remembering the order of planets can be a challenge sometimes, and this sentence has helped students in the past. Now that Pluto is considered a “dwarf planet,” have students invent a new mnemonic device to remember the planetary order. Use the first letter of each planet to make words that make up a sentence.

Grades 3–5: Science
Solar-System Book

Have students create a solar-system book and use it as a reference for information about our solar system.

Grades 3–5: Science
Collect Them All!

Have students learn about objects that make up the solar system by collecting trading cards.

Grades 4–8: Social Studies
The Right Stuff

Hold a class discussion on the qualities—personal and academic—that are essential for a career as an astronaut. Then have students research the career of an astronaut and report back to the class. Compare the class discussion with the research results.

Grades 4–8: Science
Eyes on the Skies

Have students observe the sky for several days at different times. Have students keep a notebook of their observations, thoughts, and questions. Students can look for planets, Earth's moon, satellites, stars, or other objects. Students can also include drawings.

Grades 4–8: Science/Language Arts
Repair Order

The Hubble telescope needs fixing. Have students observe ten images of mission events and then reconstruct the logical order of events to “fix the mission.”

Grades 4–8: Science
Moon Watch

Have students keep a close watch on the Moon and then draw what they see each night for an entire month.

Grades 4–8: Science
Comet Lab

Not all comets are created the same. Invite your students to explore how comets' behavior depends on their components.

Grades 4–8: Science
A Passing Phase

Earth's moon passes through eight different phases about once a month. Have students identify and label these phases.

  • Moonlight Madness
  • http://starchild.gsfc.nasa.gov/docs/StarChild/solar_system_level2/activity/moonlight.html
Grades 5–8: Science
Desk Chair Explorers

Have students explore the outlines of the constellations.

  • Star Art
  • http://starchild.gsfc.nasa.gov/docs/StarChild/universe_level2/activity/star_art.html
Grades 6–8: Science/Mathematics
Moon Time Challenge

Give your students the facts, and challenge them to use math to figure out four puzzles about life on the Moon.

Grades 6–8: Science/Language Arts
Alien Debate

No one knows for sure whether there is anyone else out there, but the question is a favorite topic for many people. Have students research and debate the possibility of life on other planets.

Grades 6–8: Social Studies/Math
Far-Out Vacation Poll

If your students could explore one of mankind's frontiers, where would they go? Hold a class discussion about the best places to explore. Some examples are space, the depths of the ocean, Earth's poles, mountains, and deserts. Take a poll and have students graph their results.

Grades 6–8: Language Arts/Science
Deep Space

Students will learn about the solar system and our galaxy and then write a science-fiction story based on what they discover.

Grades 6–8: Science
Service Hubble

Students can save the day by reconstructing the order of events for the Hubble Space Telescope's 2002 Servicing Mission.

  • Mission Mastermind
  • http://amazing-space.stsci.edu/resources/explorations/mastermind/home.html
Grades 7–8: Science
Falling in Space

It's a common misperception that astronauts float in space because of zero gravity. Actually, they appear to float because they're free-falling. Have students master this concept with an interactive explanation.

Grades 7–8: Language Arts
Crossword Puzzle

Have students test their knowledge of space.

  • Space (PDF file)
  • http://www.eduplace.com/monthlytheme/may/pdf/space_xword.pdf
  • Space Answer Key (PDF file)
  • http://www.eduplace.com/monthlytheme/may/pdf/space_xword_key.pdf

Houghton Mifflin