Science Lab on Solar System Puts Planets’ Sizes into Perspective


Second quarter kicked off with fifth grade students learning all about the solar system in science. The fifth graders recently teamed with seventh grade science teacher Mrs. Maxwell to conduct a lab that involved students using PlayDoh to model the eight planets and Pluto. 

Students started the lab with a quick-write. They wrote down what they already knew about the planets’ sizes, location and characteristics.

Up next, they went right into the lab, organized by Mrs. Maxwell. Mrs. Maxwell used a kit provided by Project Astro, a program that assists teachers to develop and teach space science.

During the lab, students were able to learn more about the planets’ sizes in relation to each other. They worked on modeling the planets to scale.

In completing the lab, students found that Jupiter is very large while Earth, Mercury and Pluto are tiny compared to their Gas Giant counterparts – Jupiter, Uranus, Neptune and Saturn.

Students ended their lab session with another quick-write in which they wrote what they learned and observed. What a fun and informative science lesson!

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