Space Exploration Teacher Resources

Humanity’s hunger to explore just beyond the reach of its understanding is not limited to the planet Earth. From the early models of Leonardo da Vinci to the landing of the Curiosity rover on Mars, we have wanted to go further and test the boundaries of our own knowledge base.

Give learners a guide to the history of space exploration in the modern era with a slideshow that details the various manned space programs in the 20th century. Astronaut Gerald P. Carr details his experiences at NASA in a fascinating video, and students can find out more with an app that explains the research occurring on the International Space Station.

Extend the topic of space exploration beyond an astronomy lesson! Language arts classes can read a nonfiction article and write a persuasive essay on the topic of kids traveling in space. They can also view a guide for space travel, perfect for either elementary or middle school classrooms.

Generations of space exploration have brought us further than ever thought possible. What does the future hold for the study of the universe? At Lesson Planet, we’re here to foster the minds and imaginations of your students so they are ready to test brand-new theories—and to truly go where no one has gone before!

Showing 1 - 24 of 134 resources
13 Items in Collection
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Mission to Mars

For Students 6th - 8th Standards
Martians beware! Earthlings are on the way! A 13-resource collection prepares future astronauts for space travel by studying interesting facts about the Red Planet, the history of Martian exploration, and the development of robotics....
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The Outer Planets: Grades 6-8

For Teachers 6th - 8th Standards
A long time ago, a galaxy formed that contained a solar system with eight planets—or nine depending on who is counting. A collection of 22 lessons has middle schoolers examine the Outer Planets of the solar system. They calculate the...
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Manned vs. Unmanned Space Exploration

For Students 5th - 8th
Space science superstars examine two data tables: one detailing manned space missions and one with unmanned missions. Seven tasks compare the two types of space exploration. This fascinating information is a great introduction to any...
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The History of Space Travel

For Teachers 5th - 8th
Who was the first person in space? What was the name of the first animal in space? These fun and intriguing questions get answered with a presentation covering the beginnings of space travel. There are eight informational slides that...
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Destination Outer Space

For Teachers 3rd - 5th
Students investigate space travel. In this space travel lesson students examine space exploration history, engineers and scientists involved in space exploration, and Newton's third law of motion. Students make rockets.
4:47
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Who Won the Space Race?

For Students 6th - 12th Standards
Modern animation presents an overview of the history of space exploration. Beginning with Sputnik in 1957, the international space race was on. Eventually, space exploration became, not a competition, but rather a collaboration. Also,...
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Space Pioneers: Major People Involved in Space Exploration

For Teachers 3rd - 8th
Students explore space science by researching the people involved with it. In this famous explorers lesson, students identify the first people to reach space such as John Glen, Buzz Aldrin and Alan Shephard. Students complete a space...
1 In 1 Collection
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Strange New Planet

For Teachers 6th - 8th Standards
The first remote sensors were people in hot air balloons taking photographs of Earth to make maps. Expose middle school learners to space exploration with the use of remote sensing. Groups explore and make observations of a new planet by...
10:39
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On This Day: Apollo 8

For Students 7th - 12th Standards
Apollo 8—the mission to orbit the moon—changed the trajectory of human history and space travel. A series of videos, including historians, the mission commander, and footage of the mission, allows pupils to watch the mission as it...
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Introduction to Space Exploration

For Teachers 4th - 7th
Learners examine U.S. History by researching the Space Race. In this space science lesson, students view a PBS documentary titled Sputnik Declassified. Learners identify the U.S. and Soviet Union's role in the Space Race and complete a...
12:22
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Air Travel and the Space Race: Crash Course History of Science #37

For Students 9th - 12th
From balloons to satellites, air travel has come a long way over the years. A video presentation discusses the origin of space travel beginning with hot air balloons and gliders to the modern-day space race. Content includes discussion...
1:00
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Women's History Minute: Katherine Johnson

For Students 6th - 12th Standards
New ReviewLaunch a study of Katherine Johnson and her contributions to the NASA Space Program with a short video that introduces viewers to little-known information about the role she and other women played. The video also reveals the gender bias...
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HISTORY OF SCIENCE: ASTRONAUTS

For Teachers 7th - 10th
Students study the pioneers of space exploration and travel; identify some of the early astronauts who prepared the way for others; examine the social and political conditions at the dawn of the Space Age; and differentiate among space...
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International Manned Space Travel and Technologies

For Teachers 3rd - 4th
Students analyze elements of space travel. In this space travel activity, students log on to Second Life and virtually explore rockets and other tools used in space travel. Students research manned space flights and discover which...
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Space Exploration Missions

For Teachers 8th
Eighth graders explore and discuss the various space exploration missions.  In this space mission activity students work in pairs and create a PowerPoint presentation on the contributions of space exploration missions. 
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Discovery, Ship to Shuttle

For Teachers 2nd - 3rd
The history of Florida is explored in this lesson plan which covers topics from Ponce de Leon to space travel. Learners listen to stories about Ponce de Leon's search for the fountain of youth and then move on to a discussion of the...
4:16
Lesson Planet

The First Humans on the Moon

For Students 9th - Higher Ed Standards
One of the most important events in space exploration history has some secrets! Using an informative video, scholars discover all of the details of the first humans landing on the moon. The narrator shares the details of the mission, why...
1 In 1 Collection
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Space Travel Guide

For Teachers 3rd - 6th Standards
Looking to take a trip? Why not go to space? Here, scholars take on the role as travel agent to create a guide to their favorite planet including travel tips and sightseeing recommendations. 
1 In 1 Collection
Lesson Planet

Space Travel Guide

For Students 6th - 8th Standards
Neptune takes 164.8 Earth years to travel around the sun. In the fifth of 22 lessons, young scientists create a travel guide to a planet in our solar system. They provide tips for others on what to bring, what they see, and their...
3:47
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Why We Send Animals to Space

For Students 9th - Higher Ed Standards
What were the first living things to travel to space? Long before humans went into orbit, scientists sent animals into space to see how space exploration would affect living things. Viewers of an interesting video learn about how animals...
4:15
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How To Build A Space Station

For Students 9th - Higher Ed Standards
Space stations provide opportunities for space exploration and research. Individuals see how scientists build space stations and put them into space. Viewers explore the history of space stations, the different types of space stations...
4:47
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1969 Apollo 11 Moon Landing

For Teachers 5th - 12th
Provide a little background information and introduce learners to one of the biggest moments in US history: the Apollo 11 moon landing. This news report describes the event, the time, and life in space. This is a report celebrating the...
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Space Travel Timeline

For Teachers 4th - 6th
Students use the Internet to find events in space history to include in a timeline. They recognize the cause and effect relationships between events that happened in the exploration of space. They see how to use the TimeLiner software.
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Moon Mining

For Teachers 3rd - 6th Standards
Go on a moon mining expedition from the safety of your classroom with this space exploration simulation. Using simple models of the moon's surface prepared ahead of time by the teacher, young scientists are challenged with locating and...