This curriculum unit is intended for eighth grade students enrolled in Earth Science classes for a period of two weeks. It will encompass topics on light, optical telescopes, solar and lunar eclipses and seasons. To further increase students' understanding of astronomical concepts, a hands-on approach will be adopted in this unit hoping to spark an interest in Space Science.
For thousand of years people like the Egyptians and Chinese have been very eager to explore the universe and to explain the mysteries that surround our blue planet. Both Greeks and Romans believed that the earth was the center of the universe. The Egyptians thought that the earth was shaped like a rectangular box and the Chinese did not know whether the sun revolved around the earth or the earth around the sun. Today, with the invention of the telescope, we have been able to discover amazing objects far, far away from our planet, such as other galaxies, quasars and supernovas. To understand certain methods astronomers use to extract information about celestial bodies comes from analysis of their visible light. Other methods include X-rays, UV, IR and Radio waves.