Journey Through Outer
How it works:
Journey through Outer Space was created
to foster third-grade students' understanding of the relationships between
the nine planets of the solar system and their different characteristics.
This program is also great for fourth- and fifth-grade space explorers,
who can follow the activities to complete their own solo missions.
Learning about the planets isn't boring or tedious when made into a game.
One way the students review their facts is by playing a game of Solar
System Shuffle at StarChild, an online learning center for young
astronomers. The children try to match the descriptions of objects to the
program enables students to understand the composition and structure of
the universe and the Earth's place in it. They learn about the sun, moon,
planets, and other objects that can be observed and described. They
explore big ideas and unifying concepts, such as order and organization,
and form and function.
with Internet access and a word-processing program are required, as are
CD-ROMs on the solar system.
This program should be started after
initial lessons on the solar system have already begun. Journey
Through Outer Space was created for a third-grade class of
mixed-ability children, but can be used with children up to fifth grade.
Teachers can modify the activities to suit their needs. For example, if
you have a gifted class, this work will probably be done alone. However,
if the ability level of your students is low, you can guide them through
the activities or pair them with brighter students.
The solar system is a massive concept for children to
understand. The Internet brings these things to life and into their
reach. This program allows children to express their knowledge and
understanding in a variety of ways. The activities broaden the children's
horizons and reinforce what has been already learned in
class the background lessons they need in order to enjoy the activities
and to fully benefit from them. This project is meant to enhance what has
been learned from a textbook, not to replace it. There are numerous
sites on the Internet that cover the solar system, however you should
stick with ones that match the reading ability of your class.
About the teacher:
Marion Peluso is a
third-grade teacher at P.S. 101 in Brooklyn, New York. Mrs. Peluso has
been involved with the Teachers Network for two years. She has taken the
online courses for new teacher credit, as well as being the recipient of
an Impact II grant. Mrs. Peluso received her master's in education this
past May from CUNY at Brooklyn College.