Friday, November 12, 2010

Galaxies and Stars

Courtesy NASA/JPL-Caltech
These last couple of weeks we went far, far away to a ....

I know.  I couldn't help it.

We are working on finishing up our Space Unit.  We wanted to finish it before the final Space Shuttle launch on November 1.  Our local space museum is having a shindig for the launch and it seems as though that would be a perfect end to our unit.  Thank goodness it was delayed because we were too!

T already learned about the moon and its phases and the planets, now it's on to galaxies and stars.  We began by learning about galaxies.

Like a true innovator, I borrowed some ideas from the The Forest Room.  To demonstrate the expansion of the universe, we blew up a balloon to measure the distance between the letters to compare it with the deflated measurement. (*Hint:  blow up the balloon to write the letters first, then let the air out to measure the deflated distance.)

T used white paint and glitter to describe the different types of galaxies (thank you, The Forest Room, again!).  Can you tell me why I thought glitter was a good idea....and why I thought the kitchen table would be a good place to craft?  We are still bedazzled.
Then she learned about the constellations, found some favorites, and learned how our night sky doesn't stay the same.
In yet another nod to The Forest Room, we I decorated an umbrella with that super stinky permanent silver paint pen.  I used chalk first to draw out some of her favorite constellations.  Then I went over it with the super stinky permanent silver paint pen.
It conveniently sprinkled a little for us so T could actually use the umbrella.

Here are some of our resources for our stars and galaxies unit.  Our total journey beyond (moon, planets, stars & galaxies) has taken us over two months of pretty consistent work.  If you want to see more, here is our moon unit and our planet unit.
Next we are on to study electricity, color, and sound.  It seems as though our conversations about stars and their energies and lifespans have naturally led us in this direction.  We are fortunate to have the flexibility to follow our interests.  What a blessing homeschooling is for us!  I'm learning so much!!


  1. This looks like a great study on the universe. Thanks for posting all your resources, too.
    Live long and prosper,

  2. Why thank you. We've been having so much fun. Conveniently our skies have been crystal clear this past week....lots of star gazing!

  3. I'm bookmarking this for when we get to space! Very neat resources.

  4. Alli@ Growin Little HeartsApril 1, 2011 at 3:46 AM

    Fantastic and fun! Thanks for the great ideas- love the umbrella!

  5. Beautiful! I love those ideas and the way you implemented them!

    Lucky kid!

  6. I'm learning in my non-science mind to take T's lead in going deeper. Thank YOU for helping me stay focused on nurturing her curiosity!

  7. It's been super rainy this year for us and it's been fun to continue to use it and watch T explain it to people. : )

  8. Wow, great study! Love all the hands on stuff.

  9. Great stuff. My 7yo really wants to learn more about space, so I have been trying to figure out what I am going to do- your post will be a great place to start!


I love a discussion!