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# Seasons Doodle Notes NGSS Aligned

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These notes are not only fun, but help to students to meet Next Generation Science Standards. The following standard and evidence statements are addressed with these doodle notes.

Notes are differentiated.

Also offered is a powerpoint that guides students through completing their notes. I share these with my students in google classroom. They are able to work on their notes at their own pace or as homework.

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Students who demonstrate understanding can:
MS-ESS1-1. Develop and use a model of the Earth-sun-moon system to describe the cyclic patterns of lunar
phases, eclipses of the sun and moon, and seasons. [Clarification Statement: Examples of
models can be physical, graphical, or conceptual.]
The performance expectation above was developed using the following elements from the NRC document A Framework for K-12 Science Education:
Science and Engineering Practices
Developing and Using Models
Modeling in 6–8 builds on K–5 experiences
and progresses to developing, using, and
revising models to describe, test, and
predict more abstract phenomena and
design systems.
 Develop and use a model to describe
phenomena.
Disciplinary Core Ideas
ESS1.A: The Universe and Its
Stars
 Patterns of the apparent
motion of the sun, the moon,
and stars in the sky can be
observed, described,
predicted, and explained with
models.
ESS1.B: Earth and the Solar
System
 This model of the solar
system can explain eclipses
of the sun and the moon.
Earth’s spin axis is fixed in
direction over the short-term
but tilted relative to its orbit
around the sun. The seasons
are a result of that tilt and are
caused by the differential
intensity of sunlight on
different areas of Earth across
the year.
Crosscutting Concepts
Patterns
 Patterns can be used to identify
cause-and-effect relationships.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Connections to Nature of Science
Scientific Knowledge Assumes an
Order and Consistency in Natural
Systems
 Science assumes that objects and
events in natural systems occur in
consistent patterns that are
understandable through
measurement and observation.

Observable features of the student performance by the end of the course:
1 Components of the model
a To make sense of a given phenomenon involving, students develop a model (e.g., physical,
conceptual, graphical) of the Earth-moon-sun system in which they identify the relevant
components, including:
i. Earth, including the tilt of its axis of rotation.
ii. Sun.
iii. Moon.
iv. Solar energy.
b Students indicate the accuracy of size and distance (scale) relationships within the model, including
any scale limitations within the model.
2 Relationships
a In their model, students describe* the relationships between components, including:
i. Earth rotates on its tilted axis once an Earth day.
ii. The moon rotates on its axis approximately once a month.
iii. Relationships between Earth and the moon:
1. The moon orbits Earth approximately once a month.
2. The moon rotates on its axis at the same rate at which it orbits Earth so that the side of
the moon that faces Earth remains the same as it orbits.
3. The moon’s orbital plane is tilted with respect to the plane of the Earth’s orbit around the
sun.
iv. Relationships between the Earth-moon system and the sun:
1. Earth-moon system orbits the sun once an Earth year.
June 2015 Page 1 of 3
2. Solar energy travels in a straight line from the sun to Earth and the moon so that the
side of Earth or the moon that faces the sun is illuminated.
3. Solar energy reflects off of the side of the moon that faces the sun and can travel to
Earth.
4. The distance between Earth and the sun stays relatively constant throughout the Earth’s
orbit.
5. Solar energy travels in a straight line from the sun and hits different parts of the curved
Earth at different angles — more directly at the equator and less directly at the poles.
6. The Earth’s rotation axis is tilted with respect to its orbital plane around the sun. Earth
maintains the same relative orientation in space, with its North Pole pointed toward the
North Star throughout its orbit.
3 Connections
a Students use patterns observed from their model to provide causal accounts for events, including:
i. Moon phases:
1. Solar energy coming from the sun bounces off of the moon and is viewed on Earth as
the bright part of the moon.
2. The visible proportion of the illuminated part of the moon (as viewed from Earth)
changes over the course of a month as the location of the moon relative to Earth and
the sun changes.
3. The moon appears to become more fully illuminated until “full” and then less fully
illuminated until dark, or “new,” in a pattern of change that corresponds to what
proportion of the illuminated part of the moon is visible from Earth.
ii. Eclipses:
1. Solar energy is prevented from reaching the Earth during a solar eclipse because the
moon is located between the sun and Earth.
2. Solar energy is prevented from reaching the moon (and thus reflecting off of the moon
to Earth) during a lunar eclipse because Earth is located between the sun and moon.
3. Because the moon’s orbital plane is tilted with respect to the plane of the Earth’s orbit
around the sun, for a majority of time during an Earth month, the moon is not in a
position to block solar energy from reaching Earth, and Earth is not in a position to block
solar energy from reaching the moon.
iii. Seasons:
1. Because the Earth’s axis is tilted, the most direct and intense solar energy occurs over
the summer months, and the least direct and intense solar energy occurs over the
winter months.
2. The change in season at a given place on Earth is directly related to the orientation of
the tilted Earth and the position of Earth in its orbit around the sun because of the
change in the directness and intensity of the solar energy at that place over the course
of the year.
a. Summer occurs in the Northern Hemisphere at times in the Earth’s orbit when the
northern axis of Earth is tilted toward the sun. Summer occurs in the Southern
Hemisphere at times in the Earth’s orbit when the southern axis of Earth is tilted
toward the sun.
b. Winter occurs in the Northern Hemisphere at times in the Earth’s orbit when the
northern axis of Earth is tilted away from the sun. Summer occurs in the Southern
Hemisphere at times in the Earth’s orbit when the southern axis of Earth is tilted
away from the sun.
b Students use their model to predict:
i. The phase of the moon when given the relative locations of the Earth, sun, and moon.
ii. The relative positions of the Earth, sun, and moon when given a moon phase.
iii. Whether an eclipse will occur, given the relative locations of the Earth, sun, and moon and a
position on Earth from which the moon or sun can be viewed (depending on the type of
eclipse).
iv. The relative positions of the Earth, sun, and moon, given a type of eclipse and a position on
Earth from which the moon/sun can be viewed.
Total Pages
7 pages
Included
Teaching Duration
30 minutes
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