Once in awhile, it is necessary to have a "movie day" in class. Perhaps you have a substitute teacher and want to make sure your students are still learning and reinforcing concepts you've been studying. Other times call for a "reward" of a movie day or as a supplement to a unit that may be particularly difficult to grasp. Whatever the reason, a great show to watch on these movie days is "Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey" with host Neil deGrasse Tyson. He makes science accessible and exciting for all ages and levels of learning.
The first episode of Cosmos, called "Standing Up in the Milky Way", was an overview of science from the beginning of time. It touches on everything from the Big Bang Theory to the Geologic Time Scale to Evolution and Astronomy. Below are questions that can be copy and pasted into a worksheet and modified as necessary for students to fill in as they watch Episode 1 of Cosmos. These questions are designed to check understanding of some of the most important parts while hopefully not taking away from the experience of watching the show.
Cosmos Episode 1 Worksheet Name:___________________
Directions: Answer the questions as you watch episode 1 of Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey
1. What is the name of Neil deGrasse Tyson's “spaceship”?
2. What is responsible for creating wind and keeping everything in the solar system in its clutches?
3. What lies between Mars and Jupiter?
4. How big is the centuries-old hurricane on Jupiter?
5. What had to be invented before we could discover Saturn and Neptune?
6. What is the name of the spacecraft that has traveled the farthest away from Earth?
7. What is the Oort Cloud?
8. How far from the center of the Milky Way Galaxy do we live?
9. What is the “address” of Earth in the cosmos?
10. Why do we not know yet if we live in a “multiverse”?
11. Who wrote the banned book that Giordano Bruno read that gave him the idea that the Universe was infinite?
12. How long was Bruno jailed and tortured?
13. What happened to Bruno after he refused to change his mind about his beliefs of an infinite Universe?
14. Who was able to prove Bruno right 10 years after his death?
15. How many years does one month symbolize on the “cosmic calendar”?
16. What date on the “cosmic calendar” did the Milky Way Galaxy appear?
17. What date on the “cosmic calendar” was our Sun born?
18. What day and time did human ancestors first evolve on the “cosmic calendar”?
19. What do the last 14 seconds on the “cosmic calendar” represent?
20. How many seconds ago on the “cosmic calendar” did the two halves of the world find each other?
21. How old was Neil deGrasse Tyson when he met Carl Sagan in Ithaca, New York?
22. What is Carl Sagan most famous for?