This Question Exploration asks the Essential Question about cosmic distances: How Do Astronomers Measure Distances to Stars? (from radar and parallax, to standard candles and Tully-Fisher Relationship used to measure distances to galaxies)
Question Exploration Routine is an instructional methods that teachers can use to help a diverse student population understand a body of content information by carefully answering a critical question to arrive at a main idea answer. Students taught using the question exploration routine earned higher total test scores than did students taught using the lecture-discussion method.
Personally, I use the Question Exploration Routine to figure out what I want to say and how I want to say it. It keeps my "Sage on the Stage" time limited to what fits onto 2-3 pages (about 45 minutes of directed class discussion). This product includes the completed question exploration guide, and the student guide blanked except for vocabulary, scaffolding questions, and graphics already filled in.
I included two activities on the scale of the universe for student assessment to be used as a warm up or after class review. The first is a classroom formation line-up, the other is a two-inch universe modeling about scale and ratios.
These Question Exploration Routines are classroom tested to help students with the following Florida Next Generation Sunshine State Standards in Science. SWBAT
SC.8.E.5.1 Recognize that there are enormous distances between objects in space and apply our knowledge of light and space travel to understand this distance.
SC.8.E.5.2 Recognize that the universe contains many billions of galaxies and that each galaxy contains many billions of stars.
SC.8.E.5.3 Distinguish the hierarchical relationships between planets and other astronomical bodies relative to solar system, galaxy, and universe, including distance, size, and composition.
SC.8.E.5.7 Compare and contrast the properties of objects in the Solar System including the Sun, planets, and moons to those of Earth, such as gravitational force, distance from the Sun, speed, movement, temperature, and atmospheric conditions.
SC.912.E.5.2 Identify patterns in the organization and distribution of matter in the universe and the forces that determine them.
SC.912.E.5.5 Explain the formation of planetary systems based on our knowledge of our Solar System;
SC.912.E.5.6 Develop logical connections through physical principles, including Kepler's and Newton's Laws about the relationships and the effects of Earth, Moon, and Sun on each other.
SC.912.L.15.8 Describe the scientific explanations of the origin of life on Earth.
SC.912.N.3.4 Recognize that theories do not become laws, nor do laws become theories; theories are well supported explanations and laws are well supported descriptions.