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Asteroids and Comets: Standards

Idaho Common Core State Standards

Here are correlations to the National Common Core Language and Math standards and to the Idaho State Science Standards. If you'd like, you may go directly to the Idaho science standards for this topic. For more information about the overall standards, see the complete Idaho Content Standards for Science, the Next Generation Science Standards, the Common Core Language standards, or the Common Core Math standards.



CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.K.4 [CCSS page]

Describe familiar people, places, things, and events and, with prompting and support, provide additional detail.

Suggested Lessons

Make a booklet with a page each for asteroid, comet, and meteoroid.

Fourth Grade

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.4.2 [CCSS page]

Write informative/explanatory texts to examine a topic and convey ideas and information clearly.

Suggested Lessons

Make a poster of an asteroid, a comet, or a meteoroid and write a mini report for the topic.

Sixth Grade

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.6.2.a [CCSS page]

Introduce a topic; organize ideas, concepts, and information, using strategies such as definition, classification, comparison/contrast, and cause/effect; include formatting (e.g., headings), graphics (e.g., charts, tables), and multimedia when useful to aiding comprehension.

Suggested Lessons

Select the topic: asteroid, meteoroid, or comet and create a science book about the topic. Include diagrams, charts, illustrations, subtitles, glossary, table of contents, etc. as necessary.


First Grade

CCSS.Math.Content.1.MD.C.4 [CCSS page]

Organize, represent, and interpret data with up to three categories; ask and answer questions about the total number of data points, how many in each category, and how many more or less are in one category than in another.

Suggested Lessons

Ask students to sort pictures of asteroids and comets based on properties studied in class. Teachers with Smart Notebook can use this Asteroids and Comets Sort Activity.

Second Grade

CCSS.Math.Content.2.MD.A.1 [CCSS page]

Measure the length of an object by selecting and using appropriate tools such as rulers, yardsticks, meter sticks, and measuring tapes.

Suggested Lessons

Create paper comets and assign groups to measure and construct tails of specific lengths from streamers, paper or other materials.

Fifth Grade

Multiple Standards [CCSS page]

Suggested Lessons

Have students research sizes of specific asteroids and comets, by name, and make a table organizing their data.


First Grade

Earth and Space Sciences: ESS1-1-1 [ICS page]

Use observations of the sun, moon, and stars to describe patterns that can be predicted.

Supporting Content:

Patterns of the motion of the sun, moon, and stars in the sky can be observed, described, and predicted.

Third Grade

Physical Sciences: PS1-3-2 [ICS page]

Make observations and/or measurements of an object's motion to provide evidence that a pattern can be used to predict future motion.

Supporting Content:

The patterns of an object's motion in various situations can be observed and measured; when that past motion exhibits a regular pattern, future motion can be predicted from it.

Sixth Grade/Middle School

Earth and Space Sciences: ESS1-MS-2 [ICS page]

Develop and use a model to describe the role of gravity in the motions within galaxies and the solar system.

Supporting Content:

Earth and its solar system are part of the Milky Way galaxy, which is only one of many galaxies in the universe. A solar system consists of a star and a collection of objects, including planets, their moons, and asteroids that are held in orbit around the star by its gravitational pull on them. The solar system appears to have formed from a disk of dust and gas, drawn together by gravity. Emphasis for the model is on gravity as the force that holds together the solar system and galaxies, and controls orbital motions within them. Evidences of models can be physical (such as computer visualizations of elliptical orbits) or conceptual (such as mathematical proportions relative to the size of familiar objects such as students' school or state.)

Earth and Space Sciences: ESS1-MS-3 [ICS page]

Analyze and interpret data to determine scale properties of objects in the solar system.

Supporting Content:

Emphasis is on the analysis of data from Earth-based instruments, space-based telescopes, and spacecraft to determine similarities and differences among solar system objects. Examples of scale properties include the sizes of an object's layers, surface features, and orbital radius. Examples of data include statistical information, drawings and photographs, and models.

Physical Sciences: PS2-MS-4 [ICS page]

Construct and present arguments using evidence to support the claim that gravitational interactions are attractive and depend on the masses of interacting objects.

Supporting Content:

Gravitational forces are always attractive. There is a gravitational force between any two masses, but it is very small except when one or both of the objects have large mass (such as planet and its star.) Examples of evidence for arguments could include data generated from simulations or digital tools; and charts displaying mass, strength of interaction, distance from the Sun, and orbital periods of objects within the solar system.

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