Does October's night sky make you want to create a unit on astronomy for the
budding star-gazers in your classroom? Get images and ideas for activities
from these sites on the World Wide Web.
We Choose the Moon from the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum is an interactive recreation of the Apollo 11 mission to the moon. The site meshes archival video, audio and photographs to make you feel as if you were there.
NASA for Students is a portal with sections for K-4, 5-8 and 9-12 students. This site features image galleries, video clips, games and interactives, and information about space, earth, the planets, astronauts, and careers at Nasa.
NASA Skywatch is a NASA site that has live tracking maps to locate the Space Station, Hubble Space Telescope, and others, including the Space Shuttle during missions. It also features Live 3D Tracking Display, an interactive guide to 700 satellites in their current Earth orbits. Check J-Pass makes it possible to predict when you can see different satellites.
For younger students, try Buzz Lightyear in Orbit. Students go on a "mission" with games that reinforce understanding of gravity, allow practice of addition and metric conversions and review space history and technology. Also visit the NASA Kids Club for more simple astronomy-related games. NASA's Picture Dictionary provides definitions with photos of many astronomy terms. (grades K-5)
Solar Eclipse: Stories from the Path of Totality from the Exploratorium provides photos, maps, videos and more to explain the science, history and lore of eclipses.
Sizing up the Universe from the Smithsonian helps students visualize sizes and distances by comparing the planets to everyday objects, and plotting the orbits on a map of their own neighborhood. A lesson plan including printable manipulatives helps teachers put the material in context an integrate math and science.
The Nine Planets: A Multimedia Tour of the Solar System is great astronomy resource for all ages, with extensive information about each planet, including photographs and video clips.
Views of the Solar System offers informative images.
Explore the Moon from the PBS series NOVA allows you virtually visit the moon's surface in this series of 360-degree panoramas, taken by the astronauts during the six successful Apollo moon landings.
The Mars Exploration Program site from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) supplies information about the latest discoveries on Mars, as well as complete details from the Global Surveyor and Pathfinder missions.
Mars for Educators indexes websites, curriculum supplements, student programs, and other information about Mars for students and teachers.
Planetary Society Kids has feature articles, experiments, and activities just right for a budding planetary scientist.
NASA Human Spaceflight provides information about the International Space Station, the shuttle, a section on space history, and more.
NASA Multimedia Gallery is a collection of photographic, video, audio, and art resources from NASA's many branches.
The NASA Image Exchange allows users to search a database of more than 300,000 digital images or browse for the best images in different categories.
The Astronomy Picture of the Day from NASA features a different photograph each day, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer. This huge collection can also be searched or browsed by topic.
NASA Earth Observatory is a public-access site for Earth and space data that is appropriate for students and teachers.
Exploring Planets in the Classroom from the Hawaii Spacegrant Consortium provides ready-to-use, simple, hands-on classroom activities in the earth and space sciences.
SkyView is a virtual observatory on the Internet that can generate images of any part of the sky at wavelengths in all regimes, from radio to gamma ray.
StarChild from NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center focuses on astronomy for elementary schools. It supplies two levels of information about the solar system, the universe, and space travel, as well as interactive activities and lesson plans. (Star Child and Imagine the Universe (below) are available on a CD-ROM free of charge to teachers.)
Imagine the Universe from NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center is an astronomy education site designed for grades 6-12. It includes basic scientific information, a glossary, lesson plans, multimedia exhibits, and interactive challenges for math and science students.
Amazing Space features Web-based activities linked to national science standards. Designed by teachers working with scientists at the Space Telescope Science Institute, these interactive activities for all grades include animations, student challenges, movies, and more.
The Galileo Project is explored on this website.
Sputnik: the 40th Anniversary from NASA tells the story of the world's first Earth-orbiting artificial satellite.
The Apollo Program from the National Air and Space Museum takes a historical look at the Apollo manned space flight program.
The Apollo to the Moon electronic exhibit from the National Air and Space Museum tells about human exploration of Earth's moon by the United States during the 1950s and '60s.
Space Race from the National Air and Space Museum recounts the race for superiority in rocketry and space flight that grew out of Cold War rivalry between the United States and the Soviet Union.
Mystery of the Maya: Astronomy explores the complex uses of astronomical knowledge by the Maya, including their sophisticated calendar system.
The Maya Astronomy Page examines Mayan astronomy.
Contributions of 20th Century Women to Physics from UCLA offers an archive of information about more than 75 important 20th century women physicists, including astrophysicists and space physicists.
Web-based Astronomy describes a high school astronomy class that is designed to be conducted on the Internet, with students working at their own pace. Links are provided to the instructor's syllabus, rubric, and Web references.
Last updated 5/29/2012