Space: 9 to 11 year olds
This list is designed to link to suitable resources to use space as a context for teaching STEM subjects for 9 to 11 year olds.
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Links and Resources
In this resource students will have the opportunity to think about how plants impact on people’s daily lives in space as well as on Earth. Students will have to think and write about the reasons for taking plants to space and eventually Mars. The resource has been designed to improve key literacy skills such as vocabulary, poetry writing, creative writing and exposure to non-fictional writing within the scientific areas of botany and space travel.
This resource is aimed at teachers of primary age students and is closely linked to elements of the mathematics national curriculum, as well as supporting aspects of science, geography and computing. The activities use early astronaut photographs to encourage students to think about what features on the Earth look like from space, and satellite images to enable students to measure the growth of a city and the shrinking of a glacier.
This careers pack, for primary schools, uses space as a context to highlight the importance of STEM subjects. The resource has been written to highlight some of the STEM career opportunities available so that students, teachers and school communities can discuss and explore, from an earlier age, the breadth of jobs opportunities available.
The Rosetta spacecraft was sent on a mission to comet 67P Churyumov-Gerasimenko. Part of its mission was to deploy a lander, Philae, on the surface of the comet. The resource contains seven activities themed around the mission:
Using interactive games, children will learn to recognise the names of the eight planets in the Solar System and they will learn that planets revolve around the Sun.
Children will learn the difference between a star and a ‘falling star’, and how friction can cause heating effects.
In this activity, students learn about craters that can be created by impacts from space.
This activity uses the context of Philae's landing to: explain why unsupported objects fall towards Earth.
Weight on other Celestial Bodies
The series of activities in this resource helps children to understand the difference between mass and weight.
Distances in the Solar System
In this resource, children are guided through activities which will help them to use models to understand the scale of the solar system.
What use is Solar Power?
Solar power is vital to the operation of satellites and to the Rosetta spacecraft. This activity requires children to make a solar powered vehicle, using solar panels, a motor and gear and other simple materials.
This is a brilliant resource for Primary, with fun experiements that are easy (and cheap!) to do. It was produced with help from scientists working on Mars projects at Imperial College and written by experienced primary teachers. It includes many activities that promote working scientifically.
The Great British Space Dinner Challenge contains six lessons:
Lesson 1 – All Aboard the International Space Station (ISS). This lesson sets the scene for the sequence of lessons with a brief Introduction to the ISS and the Great British Space Dinner Challenge.
Lesson 2: Fit for a space walk. The importance of exercise on Earth and on the ISS.
Lesson 3: The Space Master 3000. Designing a piece of gym equipment for the ISS
Lesson 4: Eat well in space. A lesson highlighting healthy diet and its application to astronauts.
Lesson 5: The spaceman diet. Students need to have completed the healthy eating worksheet set as homework the previous lesson to engage with online nutritional analysis.
Lesson 6: Design a menu for the ISS. Using the information about nutritional needs
This cross-curricular resource for primary schools looks at reaction-time for astronauts and distances travelled by the International Space Station in that time. Children learn about the body and how nerves allow us to respond to events. This resource is linked to the Astro Pi competition www.astro-pi.org
This video discusses the importance of recycling of water on the ISS - including that from human waste.
This booklet, produced by Dr. Lucie Green contains four simple activities to enrich the teaching of Solar system science and beyond.
The activities are: Keeping Safe in the Sun – learning about UV and sun cream; Landing on Mars – making a “Mars lander”; Cassini-Huygens – learning about the Cassini-Huygens mission and distances in the solar system; the Hubble Space Telescope – learning about Hubble and making a star chart to find constellations.
This AstroPi resource helps secondary school students investigate the magnetic field of the Earth. The series of activities develops from basic principles of magnetism through to some understanding of the nature and cause of the Earth's magnetism.
This resource is linked to the Astro Pi competition www.astro-pi.org
Produced by the Institute of Physics, this Physics to Go video shows a short demonstration that can be used to engage your students. The teacher notes include the equipment needed, tips and contain a full explanation of the physics involved.
Denture cleaning tablets also work well, by the way
A practical exercise where students try to build something to stop their egg breaking on impact. Encourages creativity, hands-on skills and teamwork.
Produced by the Hamilton Trust, these resources give details of six lessons on space. This includes lesson plans, practical activities and all student materials. Students find facts about the Sun, Moon and Earth. They develop an understanding of day and night, the four seasons and the Moon’s phases. The Sun and planets making up our Solar System are investigated, along with the other stars in their constellations.