Name: _______________ Cosmic Survey: What are Your Ideas about the Universe? Introduction: Many people (adults and students alike) are familiar with the names of objects in space, but have an incomplete mental model of where those objects are in space, their relative size and scale, and how they fit into the cosmic scheme of things. Understanding the sizes and distances of celestial objects can be tricky, since in our everyday experience, the stars all seem the same distance away, and the moon can appear close or far away depending on whether you observe it near the horizon or higher in the sky. And of course most people’s knowledge of dim and distant objects such as nebulae (“birth” of a star) and galaxies comes mainly from images in book or online, where all the images are about the same size with no indication of scale. In this activity, you will work independently and then within a group to answer survey questions about a variety of space objects in the cosmos in terms of how big, how far, and how old each are. The space objects to think about in this activity are Deep Field Galaxies, the Sun, Saturn, Pleiades Stars, the Moon, the Milky Way Galaxy, and the Hubble Space Telescope. Data Collection: I. Ranking 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 # Correct II. Ranking 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 # HOW BIG? Largest Group the objects according to their size: Smallest to My Ideas Group’s Answer Actual Answers HOW FAR? Group the objects according to their distance from Earth: Closest to Farthest My Ideas Group’s Answer Actual Answers Correct III. HOW OLD? Oldest Ranking 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 # Correct Turn over Group the objects according to their age: Youngest to My Ideas Group’s Answer Actual Answers Analysis: 1. How many correct answers did you have? __________ How many correct answers did your group have? __________ 2. Which category (big/far/old) was the easiest to place in order? Why? How did you know? (answer all 3 Q’s) 3. Which category (big/far/old) was the hardest to place in order? Why? What problems/difficulties did you and your group encounter while working on this category? (answer all 3 Q’s) 4. Describe an interesting fact that you learned today or a fact/idea that you did not think about in such a way before.