Planet Earth

The earth is our home. The cycles and systems and rhythms of the earth determine our days, our seasons, our years.

Earth is the only planet in our solar system that can provide a home for living things. It has sufficient light, heat, and water to support a wide range of plants and animals. Everything about the earth works together in just the right combinations to support life.

Sample some of the following activities to learn more about our home planet.


Places To Go    People To See    Things To Do    Teacher Resources    Bibliography

Places To Go

The following are places to go (some real and some virtual) to find out about our planet, earth.

American Museum of Natural History
Visit this museum and explore its exhibits about the wonders of planet earth.
Clark Planetarium
Visit the planetarium and see spectacular views of the earth.
Earth and Moon Viewer
Travel thousands of miles above the earth and see real time satellite images of the earth.
Introduction to the Atmosphere
This section provides a brief overview of the properties associated with the atmosphere.
Summary information about Kilauea Volcano, Hawai`i, including basic facts of eruption history, and anchors to additional information about Kilauea.
Krakatau located in Sunda Strait, between Java and Sumatera Island, had been well known and recorded history since the 16th century.
Mount St. Helens
Find out what happened to the people near the eruption, what happened to the plants and animals during the eruption and in the years since the eruption, and about the geological events that lead up to this famous 1980 eruption.
Mount Vesuvius
Learn about the history, geology and plate tectonics of Mount Vesuvius, a volcano on the western coast of Italy. In fact, here is a list of just about every volcano on the earth that you can think of.
The Nine Planets - Earth
Did you know that earth is the only planet whose English name does not derive from Greek/Roman mythology and that 71% of the earth's surface is covered with water?
PBS: Nova: The Atmosphere
Virtually visit the earth's atmosphere. It reaches over 348 miles from the surface of the earth and consists of 4 distinct layers. In which layer do storms and other weather happen? In which layer do airplanes fly?
Mount Pinatubo is situated in the southern part of Luzon. It is one of the biggest volcanoes in the Philippines.

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People To See

Ask your questions about the earth's surface, volcanoes, earthquakes, mountains, rocks, and water.
Send in your questions about the earth and read other's questions and answers.
Ask an Astronomer
From Lake Afton Public Observatory in Wichita, Kansas. Ask new questions or read through old ones.
Biographical Dictionary
The Biographical Dictionary contains information on 33,000 notable people from ancient times to the present day. The Dictionary is searchable by names, keywords, and dates.
Eddy the Eco-Dog
Eddy helps kids discover interesting facts about the earth, nature, andscience.
NASA's Ask the Expert
Ask all your earth-related questions from these NASA experts.
NASA's Ask the Space Scientist
Ask more earth questions or read through past questions and answers.
Volcano World - Interviews
Meet professional volcanologists and learn what it is like to study volcanoes for a living.

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Things To Do

Astronomy Magazine
Read this magazine online to discover fascinating earth facts. This online magazine has many free articles and a great Picture of the Day section.
Classroom of the Future: Earth Floor
Understand planet earth better by exploring its tectonics, cycles, biomes, adaptations, and more.
Learn all about the planet we live on.
Earth Day
Earth Day is in April. Find out what individuals can do to help raise awareness of earth conservation issues.
The Gateway to Astronaut Photography of Earth
The Gateway to Astronaut Photography of Earth hosts the best and most complete online collection of astronaut photographs of the Earth.
Geology: Plate Tectonics
See animations of plate tectonics. You can actually see what it is like as the plates of the continents move apart, bump, collide, and buckle.
The Interior of the Earth
Earth is the most dense major body in the solar system. Find out why.
Live Science
Groundbreaking developments in science, space, technology, health, the environment, our culture and history.
The Moon
Compare Earth's moon to one of Mars's two moons, Deimos or Phobos. Of all the moons in the solar system, the orbit of Phobos is closest to its planet.
NEO Earth Close Approaches
Keep yourself informed about any space objects speeding toward the earth by frequently visiting this site.
PlanetDiary has a calendar of eclipses and other important planetary dates. Click on different area of the map to find out what is happening in the world that is impacting the planet.
Spacetech's Orrery: Earth Our Home Planet
Locate information about the earth's gravity, atmosphere, and earth-moon partnership.
StarChild Question of the Month
Earth is the only planet whose English name does not come from Greek or Roman mythology. Find out how our planet got its name. All of the moons of the planets are also named for characters in Greek and Roman mythology—except for the moons of Uranus. What are they named for?
Structure and Composition of the Earth
Find out about the basic elements of the earth. Its overall composition is mostly 6 basic elements. We live on the earth's crust, but the crust comprises only.5% of the earth's total mass. Which part of the earth makes up most of its mass?
This Dynamic Earth: The Story of Plate Tectonics
Read the online version of this book by W. Jaquelyne Kious and Robert I. Tilling.
US Geological Society
Federal source for science about the Earth, its natural and living resources, natural hazards, and the environment.
World Wide Earthquake Locator
Earthquakes occur every day some place in the world. Find out where an earthquake happened today. This site from the United States Geological Survery also shows current earthquake activity--and the data goes back for about a month.

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Teacher Resources

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  • Amdur, Richard. The Fragile Earth. New York: Chelsea House, c1994.
  • Asimov, Isaac. Our Planet Earth. Milwaukee: G. Stevens Pub., 1995.
  • Brimner, Larry Dane. Earth. New York: Children's Press, c1998.
  • Estalella, Robert. Our Planet Earth. Hauppauge, N.Y.: Barron's Educational Series, c1994.
  • Gallant, Roy A. Earth: The Making of a Planet. New York: Marshall Cavendish, c1998.
  • Gardner, Robert. Where On Earth Am I? New York: Franklin Watts, c1996.
  • Gibbons, Gail. Planet Earth, Inside Out. New York: Morrow Junior Books, c1995.
  • Malam, John. Highest, Longest, Deepest: A Fold-out Guide to the World's Record Breakers. New York: Simon & Schuster Books For Young Readers, 1996.
  • Murray, Peter. Planet Earth. Chanhassen, Minn.: Child's World, c1998.
  • Parker, Steve. The Earth and How It Works. London; New York: Dorling Kindersley, 1993.
  • Ride, Sally. The Third Planet. New York: Crown, 1994.