This section contains a selection of teaching resources and case studies that were produced by the Met Office education team for Key Stage Three (ages 11-14).
In the previous lesson students should have learned about the solar system being held in place by gravitational attraction and that natural satellites orbit.
All students will know that:
satellites orbit objects that are much larger than themselves
natural and artificial satellites are kept in orbit by gravitational attraction
there are two main types of orbit
Most students will know that:
the two types of orbit are geostationary and polar orbiting
artificial satellites have a variety of uses, including meteorological, communications, scientific research, telescopes.
Some students will know:
details about specific artificial satellite
examples of information that can be gained from satellites
Challenge the students to answer the question: "How many things can you think of that we use artificial satellites for?".
Satellite examples could include weather observations (monitoring weather and climate), TV broadcast, telecommunications, scientific research, environmental monitoring, surveillance (spying!/military intelligence), astronomical (telescopes and measurements from outside our atmosphere), navigational (e.g.GPS)
You will need:
Recap from last lesson on natural satellites to allow students to remember what a satellite is.
Get students to try making their own satellite using the template supplied.
Meteorology from space
Satellites have been used for weather observations since 1959 when Vanguard 2 was launched.
Use link below to list some of the things that are observed from space.
Types of Satellite
There are two types of satellite orbit; polar orbiting and geostationary. Both are useful for meteorology and other things
Make your own satellite
Met Office research information
Artificial satellites slideshow
Get students to use the artificial satellites worksheet to demonstrate they understand the differences between polar orbiting and geostationary satellites.
Artificial satellites worksheet
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