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  • Tell students that Activity 1 (Constructing an Argument) of the lesson Is There Live in Space? introduces the structure of the scientific argumentation they will be asked to do in the rest of the lesson. Tell students that Activity 1 will give them practice with analyzing a data set and making a good scientific argument from the evidence. Encourage students to review the questions and example best answers provided in Activity 1 before starting on the current activity.

  • Subjects & Disciplines

    • Earth Science
      • Astronomy

    Learning Objectives

    Students will:

    • create a good scientific argument in the context of climate

    Teaching Approach

    • Inquiry-based learning

    Teaching Methods

    • Self-directed learning
    • Self-paced learning
    • Writing

    Skills Summary

    This activity targets the following skills:

    • Critical Thinking Skills
      • Creating
  • What You’ll Need

    Materials You Provide

    Required Technology

    • Internet Access: Required
  • Background Information

    Prior Knowledge

    • None

    Recommended Prior Activities

    • None


    Term Part of Speech Definition Encyclopedic Entry
    claim Verb

    to state as the truth.

    diameter Noun

    width of a circle.

    Earth Noun

    our planet, the third from the Sun. The Earth is the only place in the known universe that supports life.

    Encyclopedic Entry: Earth
    evidence Noun

    data that can be measured, observed, examined, and analyzed to support a conclusion.

    Mars Noun

    fourth planet from the sun, between Earth and Jupiter.

    planet Noun

    large, spherical celestial body that regularly rotates around a star.

    Encyclopedic Entry: planet
    solar system Noun

    the sun and the planets, asteroids, comets, and other bodies that orbit around it.

    star Noun

    large ball of gas and plasma that radiates energy through nuclear fusion, such as the sun.

    Venus Noun

    planet in the solar system, second from the sun.



This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. DRL-1220756. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.