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The Universe: An Introduction

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Science Age Levels Elementary (9 to 12 years old), Middle School (13 to 15 years old)

This issue of Smithsonian in Your Classroom includes a lesson plan in which the class arranges pictures of heavenly bodies according to the students' best ideas of size, distance, and age. This active introduction to the cosmos can be a pre-assessment for a unit on space science. In a follow-up modeling exercise, relationships in space are brought down to a scale of two inches.

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