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Fourth Grade, Space Exploration Lesson Plans (3 results)

Space exploration is an exciting and wide-ranging area. Getting into space (and back down) is hard, involving rockets and launch vehicles, satellites, spacecraft, re-entry systems, landers and rovers, robots, and orbital mechanics, not to mention hypothetical technologies like space elevators and artificial gravity. To survive and thrive in space, we must understand many additional issues such as human performance in space, the space economy, and the science of astronomical bodies.

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Try the annual Engineering Challenge from Science Buddies! Open to all students worldwide, a new challenge and prizes are announced every January. Explore the current challenge as well as ones from past years! Read more
Lesson Plan Grade: 3rd-5th
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This lesson will introduce your students to the scientific method using a fun, hands-on activity. A middle school version of this lesson plan is also available. Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • 3-5—Science Practices.
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Try our new Science Project Pathways in Google Classroom. One tool to plan, assign, and manage a science project in your class.

Simply enter the project start date to get a customizable science project schedule that breaks the science project into a series of smaller more manageable assignments to keep students on track. The assignments use Science Buddies guide to the scientific method to take students step-by-step through a science project. From the schedule, teachers can make assignments in Google Classroom and view student progress on each assignment.

Lesson Plan Grade: 3rd-5th
Students are introduced to the engineering challenges involved with interplanetary space travel. In particular, they learn about the gravity assist or "slingshot" maneuver often used by engineers to send spacecraft to the outer planets. Using magnets and ball bearings to simulate a planetary flyby, students investigate what factors influence the deflection angle of a gravity assist maneuver. Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • 3-PS2-2. Make observations and/or measurements of an object's motion to provide evidence that a pattern can be used to predict future motion. (Grade 3)
  • 4-PS3-1. Use evidence to construct an explanation relating the speed of an object to the energy of that object. (Grade 4)
Lesson Plan Grade: 4th-7th
Learners explore the properties of materials by designing a barrier that will protect a satellite from colliding objects. They test out multiple combinations of materials and collect data on the results to determine which materials are the most effective at shielding the satellites from the hazards of space debris. Learning Objectives Students will: Design a barrier that can protect the satellite from high-velocity impacts with space debris. Explore design considerations based on… Read more
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