Planets Lesson
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Planets Lesson



An overview lesson of the planets in the solar system with an online activity.

An overview lesson of the planets in the solar system with an online activity.



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Planets Lesson Planets Lesson Presentation Transcript

  • Earth Science Mrs. Harris
  • This week’s objectives
    • Characteristics of the inner planets
    • Characteristics of the outer planets
    • Comparing the size and distance
  • Inner Planets
    • Also called Terrestrial Planets
    • Composed mostly of rock
    • Closest to the sun
      • Mercury, Venus, Earth, & Mars
  • Mercury
    • Takes 88 Earth days to travel around the sun
    • Takes 59 days to rotate once on its axis
    • Being so close to the sun, it gets really hot! But without much of an atmosphere the heat leaves quickly!
      • Today on Mercury we’ll have a balmy high of 800 o F and a night time low of chilly -280 o F
  • Venus
    • Takes 225 days to orbit the sun
    • Takes 243 days to rotate on its axis!!!
    • Most similar to Earth (size, density, distance from sun)… however…
    • Atmosphere of 97% carbon dioxide- it’s greenhouse effect is extreme!
      • If you like sunny days and temperatures around 860 o F, then Venus is for you!
  • Earth
    • Takes 365 ¼ days to orbit the sun
    • Rotates on its axis once a day
    • One moon named Moon 
    • Amazing combination of liquid water and an oxygen-rich atmosphere to support life
    • Temperatures range from -160 o F to 140 o F
  • Mars
    • Takes 687 days to orbit the sun
    • Takes about 24 hours to rotate on it’s axis
    • Because of a tilt in the axis, Mars also experiences seasonal changes
    • Two moons: Phobos and Deimos
    • Temperatures from -125 o F to 23 o F
  • Martians?
    • Scientists have been looking for evidence of life on Mars
    • Scientists have also been looking for water on Mars
    • Some think it is possible for us to make an atmosphere on Mars to eventually make it a second planet for us! We could be the first Martians!
  • Outer Planets
    • Also called the Gas Giants
    • An asteroid belt separates the inner and outer planets
    • All the Gas Giants are less dense than the inner planets and they all have rings
      • Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, & Neptune
      • (Remember Pluto was taken off the list of official planets and is now a dwarf planet)
  • Jupiter
    • Takes 12 years to orbit the sun
    • Fastest rotation: about 10 hours on its axis
      • Jupiter’s mass = mass of all other planets x 2!
      • Made of mostly helium and hydrogen
    • Has about 60 moons! Four are the size of small planets: Io, Europa, Callisto, & Gannymede
    • The Great Red Spot (3 Earth’s would fit in it)
    • Average temperature: a brisk -230 o F
  • Saturn
    • Takes 29 ½ years to orbit the sun
    • Takes about 10 ½ hours to spin on it’s axis
    • Most famous for it’s rings- made of ice and dust debris
    • Saturn has 47 moons… so far
    • Saturn also consists mostly of helium and hydrogen, but is the least dense of all
    • You’ll find a chilly average temp of -280 o F
  • Uranus
    • Takes 84 years to get around the sun
    • Rotates on it’s axis every 17 hours
    • Unlike other planets, it’s axis mostly points towards the sun
    • Has 27 moons and 11 rings
    • Also, mostly made of helium and hydrogen but it’s blue appearance comes from methane in the atmosphere
    • Cool blue -360 o F
  • Neptune
    • Takes about 164 years to orbit the sun
    • Rotates on it’s axis about every 16 hours
    • Is also blue because of methane
    • It was known before it was seen! Because it affects the orbit of Uranus, astronomers were able to figure out where Neptune was located before it was seen!
    • 13 moons and 6 rings and a nippy -350 o F
  • Pop Quiz
    • What is the name of the region beyond the Gas Giants?
    • * hint… it’s a belt*
  • Comparisons
    • Check out this video that gives a great visual on the sizes of the planets and even the size of our sun against other stars!
    • We’re going to group up and fill out the table on the next slide:
  • Planet Diameter Distance from sun 130 lbs. weighs… Mercury Venus Earth Mars Jupiter Saturn Uranus Neptune “ Pluto”