Do middle school students really understand how immense space is? When we say "light year", do they really have a grasp for how far it is? This activity shows kids how far a light year really is!
The first page of the worksheet uses math-based questions that aim to give kids a perspective on how far a light year is. They work through questions such as:
- If you travel 3 miles on the bus to get to school (and 3 miles to get home) each day, how many miles will you travel on the bus during a 180-day school year?
- How many years would you have to go to school to travel 186,000 miles (1 light year)?
- How many years would you have to go to school to travel a light year?
The second part of the worksheet has a data table that has actual distances of several objects in space. Students use this information to figure how question such as:
- If you left today on one of the space shuttles (travelling approximately 17,500 miles per hour), how old would you be (in years) when you arrived at the Andromeda Galaxy?
The numbers are HUGE on purpose - kids get a sense of the real scale of distance! Answer key included.
Find more Astronomy Resources in the ASTRONOMY SECTION OF OUR STORE!
GRAPHING GRAVITY ACTIVITY - Great One!
Graphing Mass & Distance Vs. GRAVITY Activity
Draw Our Solar System TO SCALE
Need something different?
Search all of our NGSS-Aligned middle school materials in Our Store!
Effective, easy to follow, and always standards-based!