5th Grade Astronomy Resources

Jul 6, 2014 by

5th Grade Astronomy Resources
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Fifth grade science in California is divided into the following categories: Chemistry, Cells/Human Body/Plants, Water Cycle/Weather, Astronomy and Scientific Process. Our school has a rotation system-each teacher in the grade level takes a focus, and the students rotate between the teachers throughout the year.

I’ve been given the Chemistry rotation, and my fellow co-teachers have taken Cells/Human Body/Plants, as well as Water Cycle/Weather. We are left to teach Astronomy and Scientific Process on our own (although the Scientific Process skills bleed into every area, really). This works out to be approximately 8 weeks for each focus, with Scientific Process blended in (I’m using a Science Fair this year to focus on/assess those skills).

This week I sat down to figure out what I want/need to teach for Astronomy. Here is the process, as well as the resources I found to be most aligned to our standards, along with links. If you have a resource you use (or have created!) for these three standards, please post them in the links!

I created magnetic strips with all the ELA/Math CCSS and California Science and Social Studies standards on them at the beginning of last year. You can find a copy of it here.

I Can Common Core/Science/Social Studies Statements-SproutClassrooms.com

I use these for everything! In this case, I pulled out the science strips and laid out the ones I’m responsible for in my rotation.

5th Grade Astronomy Resources -SproutClassrooms.com

Then I turned to my rolling ‘suitcase’ full of all my science materials I had brought home from school. I sorted my materials into four categories: Chemistry, Astronomy, Scientific Skills, Misc. I decided to start with Astronomy, as it had the fewest standards.

5th Grade Astronomy Resources -SproutClassrooms.com

I put down the Astronomy standards on the table, and then starting sorting my resources under each standard. If I had a resource that didn’t match a standard, it went into a give-away pile. Because I have limited science time, I need to be really strict with myself and make sure my lessons are tight against the standards. I also went through and printed out any TpT resources I had gathered that matched, as well as printing off any ideas I had bookmarked/pinned online that would match up with a standard.

5th Grade Astronomy Resources -SproutClassrooms.com

I could easily see that the standard regarding the order of the planets and types of objects in space had LOTS of resources, while I was pretty weak in the area of Sun composition and gravitational pull.  This was a great way to show me what areas I needed more resources, which I then began to seek out.

Once I had my resources that I wanted to use, I created file folders for each standard and added Standards labels to the outside. I’m going to start using these on all my file folders so I know exactly what standards the inside materials are addressing without having to look them up each time! You can find a copy of the science labels here, or a bundle of all the standard coming soon!

5th Grade Astronomy Resources -SproutClassrooms.com

For your enjoyment, here are the final resources I ended up using for each of the California 5th Grade Astronomy Standards:

Standard 5.a: Students know the Sun, an average star, is the central and largest body in the solar system and is composed primarily of hydrogen and helium.
– Solar System Exploration Home Activity by PalmettoCactus, Free (I used the first section, Sun, for this standard)
Astronomy ‘Who Needs the Textbook’ by Homecourt Publishers, Free (I used the Sunshine Song)
Features of the Sun, Free
Solar System and the Sun by Ryan Murphy, $2.99
Solar System by Milliken Publishing Company, $2.99 (pages 7-10)
– Janice VanCleave’s Teaching the Fun of Science by Janice VanCleave, $17.72 (pages 173-174

Standard 5.b: Students know the solar system includes the planet Earth, the Moon, the Sun, eight other planets and their satellites, and smaller objects, such as asteroids and comets.
Solar System Exploration Home Activity by PalmettoCactus, Free (I used the second section, Planets, for this standard)
A Totally Tourist Tour of Our Solar Systems by AwesomeScience, Free
Alien Visitor by Addie Williams, Free (I’m going to use this to ask students what distinguishes Earth from other planets)
Astronomy ‘Who Needs the Textbook’ by Homecourt Publishers, Free (I used the Play About Planets)
Planet Fraction Lab by Meganne Braddock, Free
Astroids vs. Comets Venn Diagram by Imaginative Teacher, Free
Solar System Non-Fiction Reading Comprehension by Denise Hill, Free
AIMS Activity: Lining Up the Planets by AIMS Education Foundation, Free
Order of the Planets Mnemonic Device by Stephanie Trapp, Free
Order of the Planets by Patty Rutenbar, Free
Create Your Own Planet Mnemonic by Tails of Third Grade, Free
Planet Distances From the Sun by Yay Third Grade, Free
Planet Size Hands-On Activity by Amy Mezni, Free
Science Journal: Planet Size Comparison Guide by Travis Terry, Free
Science Lesson for the Solar System by Ideas for the Classroom, Free (focuses on asteroids, meteoroid and comets)
Solar System QR Code Scavenger Hunt by Brad Cloud, Free
Solar System and the Sun by Ryan Murphy, $2.99
Science Journal: Solar System Research Activity by Travis Terry, $3.00
Powerpoint: The Planets and Galiliean Moons by Travis Terry, $7.00
My Very Educated Mother Just Served Us Nachos Banner by SciontheFly, $2.00
– Solar System by Milliken Publishing Company, $2.99 (pages 15-22)
AIMS Out of This World by AIMS Education Foundation, $9.50
Our Solar System by Instructional Fair, Inc, $5.00 (pages 5-10 & 19-24)
An Educational Coloring Book of Planets by Spizzirri Publishing, $2.00
The How and Why Activity Book of Space by Sarina Simon, $1.00

Standard 5.c: Students know the path of a planet around the Sun is due to the gravitational attraction between the Sun and the planet.
Astronomy ‘Who Needs the Textbook’ by Homecourt Publishers, Free (I used the Sun and Earth Song)
– Rotation and Revolution by Ashley Davidson, Free
Gravitational Pull Powerpoint by Chris Hayes, Free
Planet Impact, Free (more to do with comets and gravity, but could still apply)
Planet Data: Rotation, Revolution and Gravitational Pull by Jaime Somers-Smith, $1.00
Space: A Science Stations Unit by The Science Penguin, $6.00 (I’m going to trend this toward rotation/revolutions/gravitational pull with the Earth, Moon and Sun)
Earth, Moon and Stars by LHS GEMS, $3.00 (pages 9-16)
– Solar System by Milliken Publishing Company, $2.99 (pages 23-28)


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1 Comment

  1. katieuppman

    I’m adding a new resource for the overall unit.

    Space Interactive Notebook Pages by Mad Scientist Lessons, $7.00: http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Space-Interactive-Notebook-Pages-1084577

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