About This Chapter
Below is a sample breakdown of the Universe Theories 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||Beginning and growth of the universe||The universe, solar system, galaxy, the Big Bang, the edge-center problem, Olber's paradox, and cosmic expansion|
|Tuesday||Theories about the universe||The entire universe vs. the observable universe, the Big Bang theory, the Steady State model, red-shift, background radiation, and expansion|
|Wednesday||Early years of the universe||Nucleosynthesis, cosmological principle, photons, development of the early universe, and particle soup|
|Thursday||What the universe looks like||Closed universe, flat universe, open universe, WIMPs, dark matter, nonbaryonic matter, cosmic inflation, horizon problems, and flatness problems|
|Friday||Age and speed of the universe||Cosmological constants, dark energy, quintessence, critical density, Hubble's law, time, and constant, big crunch, and age calculation methods|
1. Solar System, Galaxy, & Universe: Definitions & Difference
Want to learn what the universe, galaxy, and solar system are as well as some cool facts about each one? This lesson will give you an overview of what these three things are in a relatable fashion.
2. 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.
3. Olbers' Paradox & Cosmic Expansion: Nature of the Universe
Why is the night sky dark if there are so many stars in the universe? It used to be thought our universe had several properties that we now know not to be true. This lesson will explain what all that means and why the night sky isn't as bright as the sun.
4. The Observable Universe vs. the Entire Universe
This lesson will tie in the concepts of our observable universe, redshift, and the cosmic light horizon to explain why we cannot see the entire universe.
5. Evidence for the Big Bang Theory: Background Radiation, Red-Shift and Expansion
Discover what evidence exists to support the Big Bang theory of the birth of the universe. Learn how cosmic background radiation, the red shift of light and the ongoing expansion of the universe led scientists to believe that the universe was started with the Big Bang.
6. The Steady State Theory vs. the Big Bang Theory
Did you know that the Big Bang wasn't always a well-accepted theory of our universe? There was a competing theory called the Steady State theory. Find out what it was all about and why its proponent actually helped name the Big Bang theory.
7. Photons, Particle Soup & Nucleosynthesis
This lesson will explore what happened in the fractions of a second and minutes after the Big Bang occurred. You'll learn about matter, antimatter, photons, deuterons, positrons, and a lot more!
8. The Evolution of the Early Universe
This lesson will describe four important stages of development in the early universe, the radiation era, recombination (decoupling) epoch, the dark age, and reionization era.
9. The Cosmological Principle
This lesson will dive into the famous cosmological principle by defining and explaining isotropy and homogeneity as well as their important implications for our universe.
10. Three Models of the Universe: Flat, Open & Closed
This lesson will describe three models of the universe, including closed, open, and flat, as well as critical density and which model is most likely the correct one.
11. Hot & Cold Dark Matter & WIMPs
Neutrinos, neutralinos, axinos, gravitinos, and what the inos! Dark matter is a crazy thing and there are many different kinds of dark matter. This lesson will go over what they are and what they might be made of.
12. Cosmic Inflation: Solving the Flatness & Horizon Problems
The standard Big Bang theory doesn't explain everything in our universe, namely the horizon problem and flatness problems. This lesson will explain what does, inflation, and how so.
13. The Acceleration of the Universe
The acceleration of our universe is driven by a mysterious dark energy, which can take more than one form. This dark energy helps to explain why our universe is flat.
14. How To Calculate the Age of the Universe
This lesson will explain to you how old our universe is and how we calculate it thanks to the Hubble law and Hubble constant as well as one other simple equation.
15. The Universe's Curvature, Age & Fate
What is the age of our universe? What shape does it take? What determines the fate of our universe and what is this fate? This lesson will tell you all of this and more!
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Other chapters within the Astronomy 101 Syllabus Resource & Lesson Plans course
- The History of Astronomy Lesson Plans
- How Scientists Think & Work Lesson Plans
- Matter in Astronomy Lesson Plans
- Light in Astronomy Lesson Plans
- Newton's Laws in Astronomy Lesson Plans
- Momentum & Energy Lesson Plans
- Rotational Motion & Momentum Lesson Plans
- Earth's Spheres Lesson Plans
- Climate Influences Lesson Plans
- Orbits, Gravity & Orbital Motion Lesson Plans
- The Earth, Sky & Moon Lesson Plans
- The Formation & Phases of the Moon Lesson Plans
- Earth & Planet Atmospheres Lesson Plans
- The Sun & Energy Lesson Plans
- The Solar System Formation Lesson Plans
- The Solar System Characteristics Lesson Plans
- The Solar System's Smaller Objects & Satellites Lesson Plans
- Star Qualities Lesson Plans
- Star Types Lesson Plans
- The Birth & Life of Stars Lesson Plans
- Star Death & Stellar Remnants Lesson Plans
- The Milky Way Galaxy Lesson Plans
- Properties of Galaxies Lesson Plans
- Life in the Universe Lesson Plans
- Celestial Time & Navigation Lesson Plans
- Relativity in Time & Space Lesson Plans
- Telescopes Lesson Plans