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Facts About the Solar System: Lesson for Kids

Instructor: Jeremy Cook

Jeremy has been teaching in elementary education for 13 years and holds a master's degree in Education

The Earth is just one small part of the much bigger solar system. In this lesson, you will learn some facts about the solar system and why it is so amazing.

What is the Solar System?

Our solar system is made up of many parts. It is a combination of a single star and planets, moons and other objects that orbit around it. Think of it like a neighborhood. The solar system is our neighborhood, but we are also part of a bigger galaxy called the Milky Way--just like a neighborhood might be part of a bigger city.

We are one of hundreds, and maybe even thousands, of solar systems in our galaxy. The Sun is our star that rotates at the very center of our solar system. It's huge, hot and very bright. Around the Sun, eight planets orbit in different patterns.

Our Solar System
Our Solar System

The Sun and Stars

Stars are large, glowing balls of burning gas. They come in many different sizes and colors. The Sun is a medium-sized star compared to the other stars in the Milky Way. It appears a yellow color, but there are blue, orange, red and white stars, too. A star's color is related to how hot it is. The Sun gives the solar system light and heat, which both make it possible for there to be life on Earth.

Remember, the Sun is the only star in our solar system, or neighborhood. The stars you see in the night sky are actually part of the bigger city, or Milky Way.

The Sun is a burning ball of gases.
Our Star

The Planets

Our solar system has eight main planets that rotate around the Sun. Planets are large bodies in space that orbit a star. There are four inner planets and four outer planets. The inner planets are Mercury, Venus, Earth and Mars. The outer planets are Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune.

The inner planets are smaller and have rocky surfaces. The Earth is an inner, rocky planet that sits at just the right distance from the sun, which is how it is able to support life.

The inner planets--Mercury, Venus, Earth and Mars
Inner Planets

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