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  • 5th Grade

    Earth's Place in the Universe

Students who demonstrate understanding can:

Performance Expectations

  1. Support an argument that differences in the apparent brightness of the sun compared to other stars is due to their relative distances from the Earth. 5-ESS1-1

    Clarification Statement and Assessment Boundary

A Peformance Expectation (PE) is what a student should be able to do to show mastery of a concept. Some PEs include a Clarification Statement and/or an Assessment Boundary. These can be found by clicking the PE for "More Info." By hovering over a PE, its corresponding pieces from the Science and Engineering Practices, Disciplinary Core Ideas, and Crosscutting Concepts will be highlighted.

By clicking on a specific Science and Engineering Practice, Disciplinary Core Idea, or Crosscutting Concept, you can find out more information on it. By hovering over one you can find its corresponding elements in the PEs.

Planning Curriculum

Common Core State Standards Connections


  • RI.5.1 - Quote accurately from a text when explaining what the text says explicitly and when drawing inferences from the text. (5-ESS1-1)
  • RI.5.7 - Draw on information from multiple print or digital sources, demonstrating the ability to locate an answer to a question quickly or to solve a problem efficiently. (5-ESS1-1)
  • RI.5.8 - Explain how an author uses reasons and evidence to support particular points in a text, identifying which reasons and evidence support which point(s). (5-ESS1-1)
  • RI.5.9 - Integrate information from several texts on the same topic in order to write or speak about the subject knowledgeably. (5-ESS1-1)
  • W.5.1 - Write opinion pieces on topics or texts, supporting a point of view with reasons and information. (5-ESS1-1)


  • 5.NBT.A.2 - Explain patterns in the number of zeros of the product when multiplying a number by powers of 10, and explain patterns in the placement of the decimal point when a decimal is multiplied or divided by a power of 10. Use whole-number exponents to denote powers of 10. (5-ESS1-1)
  • MP.2 - Reason abstractly and quantitatively. (5-ESS1-1)
  • MP.4 - Model with mathematics. (5-ESS1-1)

Model Course Mapping

First Time Visitors

Resources & Lesson Plans

  • More resources added each week!
    A team of teacher curators is working to find, review, and vet online resources that support the standards. Check back often, as NSTA continues to add more targeted resources.
  • In this activity students explore the relative size of the sun and Earth as well as the distance between them at that relative size.  This activity serves as a first step to building understanding of distances in space.

  • This is a formative assessment probe designed to elicit student ideas about the relative positions of objects seen in the sky.  Students observe a picture of a person viewing the night sky and wonder about the distance of the moon and stars ...

  • Participants use provided images of earth and space objects to arrange them in order of their size, their distance from Earth, their temperature, and/or their age. Through this work students represent and confront their mental models of space an ...

  • This resource is a packet of supplementary curriculum materials for grades 2-4 developed by the Stanford SOLAR (Solar On-Line Activity Resources) Center in conjunction with NASA and the Learning Technologies Channel.  This evaluation refers to t ...

  • Students construct a size-distance scale model for the sun, Earth, moon and stars.  In addition, they use their bodies and movements to model the relationship between time and astronomical motions of Earth (rotation on its axis and orbit around ...

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Planning Curriculum gives connections to other areas of study for easier curriculum creation.