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Ch 10: The Universe, Stars & Planets

About This Chapter

These video lessons provide a fun tool for teaching middle-schoolers about the solar system, stars, galaxies and the universe. A short quiz with each lesson lets you assess your student's understanding of the concepts.

The Universe, Stars & Planets - Chapter Summary

These engaging, quick video lessons teach middle-schoolers about the formation theories of the universe, Earth, and the Moon. Students learn about the processes that birth stars and galaxies, and explore black holes, supernovae and star types. Lessons also offer a tour of the other bodies that orbit our Sun. Students can submit any astronomy questions to our instructors for additional clarification.

Chapter Lessons and Objectives

Video Objectives
Origins of the Universe: The Big Bang and Expanding & Contracting Universes Students explore the theories that guide our understanding of the formation of the universe.
Star Formation: Main Sequence, Dwarf & Giant Stars Lesson explains the processes by which stars are formed.
Galaxy Formation: Spiral, Elliptical & Irregular Galaxies Students study the different types of galaxies and their formation processes.
Types of Stars by Size, Color and Life Cycle Students explore star types and learn about their features.
Structure of the Sun Lesson offers an in-depth explanation of the structure and formation of our Sun.
Stages of the Sun's Life Cycle Students learn about the history of the Sun and what it has in store for the future.
Supernova and Supergiant Star Life Cycle Lesson introduces students to the most massive stars and their processes.
Life Cycle of Black Holes Video explains how black holes are formed.
Inner Planets of the Solar System: Mercury, Venus, Earth & Mars Students get an overview of the three closest planets to the Sun.
Formation of the Earth: Theories Lesson describes the theories regarding the formation of our planet.
Formation of the Moon: Theories Students learn about the potential causes that formed the Moon.
Outer Planets of the Solar System: Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune Lesson describes the properties of the four outermost known planets.
Dwarf Planets of the Solar System: Pluto, Eris, Haumea & Ceres Students explore the dwarf planets and learn about Pluto.
Asteroids, Meteorites & Comets: Definitions and Characteristics Lesson discusses the smaller bodies that orbit our Sun.

14 Lessons in Chapter 10: The Universe, Stars & Planets
Test your knowledge with a 30-question chapter practice test
Origins of the Universe: The Big Bang and Expanding & Contracting Universes

1. Origins of the Universe: The Big Bang and Expanding & Contracting Universes

Students will learn the origins of the universe, the Big Bang theory, the timeline of the universe, how the universe is still expanding to this day, and what astronomers expect the universe to look like in the future.

Star Formation: Main Sequence, Dwarf & Giant Stars

2. Star Formation: Main Sequence, Dwarf & Giant Stars

Learn how stars are born, beginning with a protostar. Then learn about stars in later stages of life, including main sequence stars, brown dwarfs, red giants, and black holes.

Galaxy Formation: Spiral, Elliptical & Irregular Galaxies

3. Galaxy Formation: Spiral, Elliptical & Irregular Galaxies

This lesson explains how galaxies form, starting with the Big Bang. You'll also learn about the solar nebula hypothesis and three galaxy types, including spiral, elliptical, and irregular galaxies.

Types of Stars by Size, Color and Life Cycle

4. Types of Stars by Size, Color and Life Cycle

Learn to identify the different sizes and colors of stars and how they relate to the star life cycle. In this lesson, we'll talk about spectral classification, how many stars there are of each type and the approximate color of the different classes of stars.

Structure of the Sun

5. 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.

Stages of the Sun's Life Cycle

6. 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.

Supernova and Supergiant Star Life Cycle

7. Supernova and Supergiant Star Life Cycle

Learn about one of the biggest explosions known to humankind - a supernova. Follow a star's life cycle and learn how a star changes from a red giant to a supernova to a black hole or neutron star.

Life Cycle of Black Holes

8. Life Cycle of Black Holes

Learn about black holes, their myths and their reality. Learn how black holes form after stars undergo supernovae and create singularities. Discover how big black holes grow, how scientists find black holes and where black holes are located in the universe.

Inner Planets of the Solar System: Mercury, Venus, Earth & Mars

9. Inner Planets of the Solar System: Mercury, Venus, Earth & Mars

Take a tour of the four inner planets: Mercury, Venus, Earth and Mars. Known as the terrestrial planets, find out what makes each of them unique and how they are different from the outer planets, the gas giants.

Formation of the Earth: Theories

10. Formation of the Earth: Theories

In this lesson, the theory of how the planet Earth formed will be discussed. This includes looking at how it differentiated into three layers, how it formed its atmosphere, water, and land features, and how it continues to evolve today.

Formation of the Moon: Theories

11. Formation of the Moon: Theories

Explore the four major theories on the formation of the Moon. The theories include the fission theory, capture theory, condensation theory and giant impact theory. Also look at both information supporting and flaws found in these theories.

Outer Planets of the Solar System: Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune

12. Outer Planets of the Solar System: Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune

Take a tour of the outer planets of our solar system: Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune. Find out what makes each of these gas giants unique and learn about Pluto, a dwarf planet.

Dwarf Planets of the Solar System: Pluto, Eris, Haumea & Ceres

13. Dwarf Planets of the Solar System: Pluto, Eris, Haumea & Ceres

Discover why Pluto had to leave the league of planets and was downgraded to a dwarf planet. Learn the definitions for planet and dwarf planet. Find out about the currently classified dwarf planets in our solar system: Pluto, Eris, Ceres, Haumea and Makemake.

Asteroids, Meteorites & Comets: Definitions and Characteristics

14. Asteroids, Meteorites & Comets: Definitions and Characteristics

This lesson will cover the definitions and characteristics of asteroids, comets and meteorites. It will also explore what impact they have had on Earth and the impact they might have in the future.

Chapter Practice Exam
Test your knowledge of this chapter with a 30 question practice chapter exam.
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Practice Final Exam
Test your knowledge of the entire course with a 50 question practice final exam.
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