Unit 4

Our Solar System

and Earth

Our Solar System and Earth

(This is part of the Big History Project Program)

Teachers

Allison Bruning

Prerequisite

Unit 3: Stars and Elements

Subjects

History, Science, Reading and Writing

Ages

10 - 17 years old

   

Sessions

 

Session 1: Planet Formation

LESSON OBJECTIVES: 

Students will define accretion, adapt, continental drift, determine, earthquake, evidence, extend, geology, historian, observe, orbit, origin, planet, produce, scholar, scientific, scientist, surface, system, tectonic plates, and universe. 

Students will use intuition and logic to make deductions about what might happen next to the matter that is left over after a star has formed.

Students will review the vocabulary for this unit.

Students will complete and discuss their answers on the Vocabulary: Part 1 worksheet.

Students will watch and discuss "Threshold 4: Earth & the Solar System"

HOMEWORK:

Examine the National Geographic Our Solar System Interactive Chart about our solar system. 

Session 2: The Formation of Our Solar System

LESSON OBJECTIVES: 

Students will discuss their findings about our solar system from their homework. 

Students will review what we have learned so far about the formation of our solar system. 

Students will watch and discuss "How Did Earth and the Solar System Form?"

Students will read and analyze "How Our Solar System Formed" using the Three Close Reads method. 

HOMEWORK:

Finish your Three Close Reads if you haven't done so in class. 

 

Session 3: Active Accretion

LESSON OBJECTIVES: 

Students will capture some causes that led to the development of the Earth’s atmosphere, and then categorize them in a couple of different ways.

Students will watch and discuss "Active Accretion Activity".

Students will review Threshold 4 - Earth and the Solar System. 

HOMEWORK:

No Homework

Session 4: Young Earth

LESSON OBJECTIVES: 

Students will examine the Driving Question Notebook and Discussion Guide. 

Students will practice academic language, claim testing and engaging discourse through a class discussion centered around the driving question.  

Students will watch and discuss "What Was Young Earth Like?"

HOMEWORK:

No Homework

Session 5: The Early Atmosphere

LESSON OBJECTIVES: 

Students will watch and discuss "The Early Atmosphere"

Students will examine the chemical abundances found in space, our sun and in the Earth's crust.

Students will make connections between today’s world and the events of each threshold.

Students will explore what exoplanets are and what discoveries are currently being made about them. 

HOMEWORK:

No Homework

Session 6: The Solar System and Earth

LESSON OBJECTIVES: 

Students will review the vocabulary for this unit.

Students will complete and discuss their answers on the Vocabulary: Part 2 worksheet.

Students will watch and discuss "Crash Course: The Solar System and Earth" and "Why Pluto Is No Longer a Planet" 

HOMEWORK:

No Homework

Session 7: Our Shifting Globe

LESSON OBJECTIVES: 

Students will watch and discuss "Our Shifting Globe" 

Students will examine earthquake and seismic activity that is happening right now.  

Students will analyze, evaluate claims and discuss claims concerning geology and Earth's formation. 

Students will review how to test claims they hear on a daily basis as to whether or not the claim is true. 

HOMEWORK:

No Homework.

Session 8: Biography of a Continent 

LESSON OBJECTIVES: 

Students will read, analyze and discuss "Why We're All Lava Surfers" using the Three Close Reads method. 

Students will examine different ways the Periodic Table of Elements was formulated.

Students will choose and investigate a continent’s characteristics and its history—both its geologic history and its human history.

Students will create a biography for their continent and create a map highlighting its most important facts and features.

HOMEWORK:

Finish your continent's biography if you have not done so in class. 

Session 9: Introduction to Geology

Students will present their continent's biography.

Students will cite specific passages and evidence from the content in the unit that provide insights into answering the driving question - How and why do theories become generally accepted? 

Students will watch and discuss "Introduction to Geology"

Students will read, analyze and discuss "Alfred Wegener & Harry Hess" using the Three Close Reads" method.

HOMEWORK:

Finish your Three Close Reads if you have not done so in class. 

Session 10: Geological Time

LESSON OBJECTIVES: 

Students will read, analyze and discuss "Eratosthenes" using the Three Close Reads method.

Students will watch and discuss "How Simple Ideas Lead to Scientific Discoveries." and "Introduction to Geological Time Chart"

HOMEWORK:

No homework

Session 11: Principals of Geology

LESSON OBJECTIVES: 

Students will read, analyze and discuss "Principals of Geology" using the Three Close Reads method.

Students will solidify their understanding of the different disciplines by deciding what kinds of questions scholars from different disciplines might ask about an object or a significant event. 

Students will discuss why interdisciplinary teams are more important while conducting research than only using one person.

HOMEWORK:

No homework

Session 12: Evaluating and Generating Claims

LESSON OBJECTIVES: 

Students will revisit their timelines to consider when the scientific revolution occurred and whether or not there was science before the scientific revolution.

Students will revise another student’s writing as a way to understand not just what a good claim is, but how to actually generate one.

HOMEWORK: 

Read Investigation 4 Articles

Session 13: Investigation 4 

LESSON OBJECTIVES: 

Students will write a five- to six-paragraph essay explaining when and why people accept a theory, using plate tectonics as a case study. They will support their claims with logic and evidence and that they refer to the specific documents or sources from which they’re getting their information. They should be able to trace the major steps that scientists took in developing and accepting the theory of plate tectonics.

HOMEWORK: 

No Homework

Session 14: Fleeing the Surface of Our Planet

LESSON OBJECTIVES: 

Students will consider what they would do and where they would go if they had to flee the surface of the Earth.

Students will watch and discuss "Crash Course Astronomy: Introduction to the Solar System"

HOMEWORK: 

Three Close Reads "A Brief History of Pluto"

Session 15: Scale 

LESSON OBJECTIVES: 

Students will review what scale is and how scientists use it. 

Students will discuss their homework. 

Students will plan an accurate scale of the universe that they will construct outside the classroom. 

Students will watch and discuss "To Scale: The Universe."

HOMEWORK: 

Construct a scale model of the universe using the plan you developed in class. Be sure to video or photograph your scale model. Be sure to upload your evidence in Classcraft and be prepared to share your experiment with the class in the next session. 

Session 16: Comets 

LESSON OBJECTIVES: 

Students will present their homework to the class.  

Students will read, analyze and discuss "Comets - Portents of Doom?" using the Three Close Reads method.

Students will revise their plans to escape from the surface of the Earth based on information they have gained in this unit.

HOMEWORK: 

Finish editing your plans. Be sure to upload your escape route plans in Classcraft and be prepared to share your experiment with the class in the next session. 

Session 17: Transit

LESSON OBJECTIVES: 

Students will present their homework to the class.  

Students will investigate what transit is and why it is important to understand.

Students will watch and discuss "Crash Course Astronomy - Exoplanets"

HOMEWORK: 

Three Close Reads - How We Find Exoplanets

Session 18: Interpreting Transit Graphs

LESSON OBJECTIVES: 

Students will discuss their homework.

Students will interpret graphs that show the transit of planets across stars.

HOMEWORK: 

No Homework

Session 19: Fleeing the Surface of the Earth

LESSON OBJECTIVES: 

Students will use the knowledge they’ve gained in the last two lessons to decide who they might bring with them as they flee.

Students will will incorporate their understanding of Goldilocks Conditions and how those help them better understand the conditions in their final destinations and how that will determine where they go and how they should prepare for their journeys. 

HOMEWORK: 

No Homework

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