The Comet's Tale
This module is a series of sections on the origin, characteristics, and history of comets, with accompanying animations. Instructions on how to "make a comet" in the classroom are also provided. An extensive glossary of comet related terms is included in conjunction with the descriptions.
1. What are the origins and nature of comets?
2. Do they have any effect on Earth and its inhabitants?
1. Students will know the histroy of human understanding of comets.
2. Students will know the physical origin and comparison of comets.
3. Students will know comet anatomy and the processes that occur near the sun.
4. Students will know the theory involving a large comet/meteor and the extinction of the dinosaurs.
General Subject Areas
Solar System, Comets
Author: CSE @ SSL
VIEW THE LESSON
The lesson starts with a spectacular Gallery of recent comet photos. The History section invites students to consider their own knowledge and ideas as they trace the understanding of comets through time. Students use a navigation menu to study various aspects of comets- their origins, make up, characteristics, and orbits. The lesson includes instructions, for a hands-on Make a Comet activity. "Killer Comets?" - presents an investigation on the two leading theories of extinction of the dinosaurs. Students read the evidence and decide.
Familiarity with basic solar system structure, planets and their orbits. Browser navigation skills.
-Extensive glossary linked to lesson pages
-"What's in a comet anyway?" interactive game
-Links to other comet-related sites
-Common vocabulary list for middle school readers
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8-10 class periods; more for "Killer Comets" section.
-Browser enabled computers with Internet connection.
-Copies of student worksheets
-Ingredients and assembly tools for comets
-Safety equipment: Insulated gloves and safety glasses for working with dry ice.
-"Make A Comet" instructions pdf html
Subject Background pt I (html)
Subject Background pt II (html)
Subject Background pt I & II (pdf)
Subject Background pt III (html)
Extra on "Long Periods"
Word Search Puzzles
Best For Grades
National Science Education Standards (NSES)
State Science Standards
Grade 5 Earth Sciences
Grade 8 Physical Science
Grades 9-12 Earth Sciences
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