```Paper Mache Solar SystemFe Andres Juachon              Alexander Hamilton                               1650 W. Cornelia                               Chicago IL 60657                                   (312) 534-5485Objectives:

The students will be involved in hands-on laboratory activities to learn:

1) The relative sizes of the planets in the Solar System.
2) The relative spacing of the Solar System.
3) The cause of the phases of our moon.

Materials needed:

Round balloons of different sizes      9 styrofoam balls
Plaster of Paris                       Transparent light bulb
Strings                                9 dowel rods
Newsprint                              Globe

Strategy:

Begin by reviewing what the solar system consists and naming the nine
planets in the order of their distance from the sun.
In order to see the relationship of the size of planets and their relative
distance from the sun construct models to scale.  (See table on the next page.)
Models made of paper-mache can be used.  Shape each planet to the desired
size and bake it in an oven for one-half hour.  For each of the larger planets
blow up a balloon to one inch less than the desired size.  Mold a half-inch of
paper-mache over the balloon and let it dry for several days.
The planets can be suspended by strings from the ceiling of the room.
Arrange them in the order from the sun.
For the relative distances of the planets go out on the sidewalk.
Designate each student to represent each planet.  Reduce each distance to human
footsteps and measure steps down the sidewalk.
To show the phases of the moon, set a lamp without a shade on a table in a
dark room.  Stand several feet away from the lamp.  Hold a ball out in front of
you so it is in line with your eyes and the bulb of the lamp.  The light is the
sun, the bulb is the moon, and you are on the earth.  Now move the moon (bulb)
slightly to the left of the bulb.  How much of the moon is lighted at this
point.  Turn on your heels so that the ball moves in a circle.  At which point
is there a full moon?  a new moon?  a quarter moon?

Conclusions:

The students could make a drawing of what they created.  They could write a
composition showing step by step how to construct the models.
For the phases of the moon, the students could work with the real moon.
Every three nights for one month they can diagram the shape of the moon that is
reflecting light.  Have them date their pictures.  If a night is overcast, leave
a space in their series of drawings.  They can fill in the empty spaces at the
end of the month to show the phases of the moon that did occur on those cloudy
nights.  Does the moon rotate as well as revolve?  (Yes)

Planet           Average distance           Scale distance
from sun (km)             from sun (cm)
---------------------------------------------------------------
Mercury              58 000 000              5.8   (5 footsteps)
Venus               108 000 000              10.8  (10 footsteps)
Earth               150 000 000              15.0  (15 footsteps)
Mars                229 000 000              22.9  (22 footsteps)
Jupiter             777 000 000              11.1  (11 footsteps)
Saturn            1 426 000 000              142.6 (142 footsteps)
Uranus            2 876 000 000              287.6 (287 footsteps)
Neptune           4 490 000 000              449.0 (449 footsteps)
Pluto             5 914 000 000              591.4 (591 footsteps)
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Scale of distances 1 cm = 10 000 000 km

Planet            Scale diameters of planets
---------------------------------------------
Mercury                 .76 inches
Venus                  1.90 inches
Earth                  2.00 inches
Mars                   1.06 inches
Jupiter               22.36 inches
Saturn                18.00 inches
Uranus                 7.74 inches
Neptune                7.8  inches
Pluto                   .54 inches

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