About This Chapter
Below is a sample breakdown of the Sun & Energy chapter into a 5-day school week. Based on the pace of your course, you may need to adapt the lesson plan to fit your needs.
|Day||Topics||Key Terms and Concepts Covered|
|Monday||Sun's structure and atmosphere||Sun's layers, mass, diameter and size|
|Tuesday||Photosphere and chromosphere||Granulation, convection, sunspots, supergranules, filtergrams and spicules|
|Wednesday||Solar corona, flares and prominences||Coronagraphs, magnetic carpets, solar wind, filaments, reconnection events and coronal mass ejections|
|Thursday||Helioseismology and sunspots||Oscillation, umbra, penumbra, differential rotation, maunder minimum, polarity and solar cycle|
|Friday||Sun's magnetic cycle and stages of its life cycle||Babcock model, nebula, main sequence and white dwarf|
1. Structure of the Sun
Discover the layers of the sun, including the core, radiative zone, convective zone, photosphere, chromosphere, and corona. Find out which layers you can see from Earth. Investigate what sunspots and solar flares are.
2. The Sun: Atmosphere & Facts
This lesson will go over what the three layers of our sun's atmosphere are, the sun's surface temperature, chemical composition, radius, and distance from Earth.
3. Photosphere: Definition & Features
This lesson will go over the sun's photosphere (its visible 'surface'), including where light comes from, how hot it is, and what granules and supergranules are.
4. Chromosphere: Definition & Properties
This lesson will explore some of the interesting features of the second layer of the sun's atmosphere, the chromosphere, including spicules and its pinkish hue.
5. The Solar Corona & Solar Wind
This lesson will define the solar corona and go over how it's involved with the formation of the solar wind and why it's hotter than the photosphere despite being the outermost layer of the sun's atmosphere.
6. Solar Flares, Solar Prominences & Coronal Mass Ejections
This lesson will go over three events caused by magnetic interactions in our Sun. They are prominences, flares, and coronal mass ejections. We'll also touch base on how the latter two can affect life on Earth.
7. Helioseismology & the Heliosphere
This lesson will go over important terms beginning with helio-: heliosphere, heliopause, and helioseismology - what they are and what importance helioseismology plays in our understanding of the sun.
8. What Are Sunspots?
This lesson will describe for you what sunspots are, where they appear, what parts they have, and why they're dark. It also discusses what differential rotation and a sunspot cycle are.
9. Why Do Sunspots Occur?
This lesson will outline for you why sunspots occur in its photosphere as we go over the Zeeman effect, polarity, and how the sunspot cycle and solar cycle are linked.
10. The Babcock Model of the Sun's Magnetic Cycle
This lesson will cover a model called the Babcock model or Magnetic-Dynamo model, which helps to explain how many of the features of the solar and sunspot cycle occur.
11. Stages of the Sun's Life Cycle
Discover our sun, the provider of energy for life on Earth. Learn how the sun was born, how it lives as a main sequence star, how it will age into a red giant and how it will die as a white dwarf.
12. How Energy Moves Within the Sun
This lesson will describe how energy is carried from the inner reaches of the Sun, through the radiative zone, then the convective zone, and finally into space.
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