Big idea: Earth in space

Understanding the uniqueness of the Earth and the vastness of space gives us perspective and awe.

"Earth in space" is one of 15 big ideas of science in the Best Evidence Science Teaching collection. Understanding of the big idea is built up by a series of key concepts at age 11-16, which have been organised into teaching topics.

The research-informed resources for each key concept make up a progression toolkit that provides:

  • appropriately-sequenced steps for learning progression
  • diagnostic questions to reveal preconceptions and common misunderstandings
  • response activities to challenge misunderstandings and encourage conceptual development

Download teacher guidance notes for this big idea



Resources for age 11-14

Topic 1: Solar system and beyond

Topic 2: Earth and sun

Resources for age 14-16

Topic 3: Gravity in space

  • Key concept 1
    Stellar evolution

    Resources for this key concept will be uploaded in late 2022.
  • Key concept 2
    Orbital motion

    Resources for this key concept will be uploaded in late 2022.

Is there a recommended teaching order?

The Best Evidence Science Teaching resources can be incorporated into your existing scheme of work, if desired. 

However, we have used research evidence on learning pathways and effective sequencing of ideas to develop maps that suggest how key concepts can be sequenced to build understanding of big ideas of science. These maps can help with curriculum planning.

View the key concepts map for physics