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Seasons (3 days)
Big Idea
The patterns of motion of the objects in the solar system can be described and predicted on the basis of observations and an understanding of gravity. Comprehension of these patterns can be used to explain many Earth phenomena, such as day and night, seasons, tides, and phases of the moon. (K-12 Framework Core Idea ESS1)
Essential Questions
  • What causes seasons?

Explain the seasons in the Northern and Southern Hemispheres in terms of the tilt of the Earth's axis relative to the Earth's revolution around the Sun.
Explain the relationship among common objects in the solar system, galaxy, and the universe.
Science & Engineering Practices
  • Developing and Using Models:  Model the earth and sun system using a light source and globe.
Content/Core Ideas
Earth's axis of rotation tilts at an angle of 23.5 degrees and always points to the North Star, or Polaris. The Earth orbits around the sun in a nearly circular orbit. When the Northern Hemisphere is tilted towards the sun in its orbit, it is summer. When the Northern Hemisphere is tilted away from the sun, it is winter.
Crosscutting Concepts
  • Systems and System Models
  • Stability and Change
Learning Practices
CC: 7.W.2  Journal--Write explanations of the reason for the changing of the seasons.
Academic Vocabulary
  • revolve
  • rotation
  • orbit
  • solstice
  • equinox