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Science - Secondary Curriculum Science - Earth Science
Lesson Plans

Standard 1

Students will understand the scientific evidence that supports theories that explain how the universe and the solar system developed. They will compare Earth to other objects in the solar system.

Objective 1

Describe both the big bang theory of universe formation and the nebular theory of solar system formation and evidence supporting them.
  • Big Bang Opinionaire
    This introductory activity gives students an opportunity to survey other students and adults on their views of the Big Bang theory. It is a pre-reading or "frontloading" activity to build interest and identify what students know about the theory.
  • Create a Graphic Organizer
    Students will create a graphic organizer based on reading from their texts. Graphic organizers are a great way to help students visualize what the main theme is and how the concepts you teach are related to that theme.
  • Doppler Effect
    Students will see and hear demonstrations of the Doppler Effect and then make an advertisement for a rock and roll band called "The Doppler Effect".
  • Forces of the Solar System
    This can be used as a demonstration and discussion activity or it can be used as a student activity. It uses water balloons to show the effect gravity will have on different sizes of objects in our solar system. It also shows how inertia works.
  • Heavy Elements
    Students will play the "Heavy Element" game to learn about star cycle and the formation of heavy elements in the universe.
  • Red Shift, Blue Shift
    This is designed to help students understand the Red and Blue Shift through a game-like demonstration.
  • Starlight Lab
    Students will analyze light given off by glowing elements using a spectroscope. They will relate the spectrum given off by a stationary source to one that is "red-shifted".
  • The Periodic Table and the Universe
    Students will apply the atomic number of elements on the periodic table to the origin of heavy elements in the star cycle.
  • Theory Development: Big Bang
    Students will use a textbook to trace the scientific development of a theory. They will then create visuals, which represent the development of that theory.
  • Understanding Doppler Effect
    Students will inquire on the questions: What factors affect the wavelength of a wave? (Guided inquiry) What is the Doppler Effect? (Structured inquiry)
  • Universe Pictionary
    Students will play the popular game "Win, lose or Draw" or also called "Pictionary," using important vocabulary in the unit. They will do this in small groups.
  • Universe Theories and Technology PowerPoints / Poster
    Student groups will research various topics related to the universe and it's formation. They will design a presentation to make to their class. They can make a power point presentation or a poster presentation.

UEN logo - in partnership with Utah State Board of Education (USBE) and Utah System of Higher Education (USHE).  Send questions or comments to USBE Specialist - Milo  Maughan and see the Science - Secondary website. For general questions about Utah's Core Standards contact the Director - Jennifer  Throndsen.

These materials have been produced by and for the teachers of the State of Utah. Copies of these materials may be freely reproduced for teacher and classroom use. When distributing these materials, credit should be given to Utah State Board of Education. These materials may not be published, in whole or part, or in any other format, without the written permission of the Utah State Board of Education, 250 East 500 South, PO Box 144200, Salt Lake City, Utah 84114-4200.