Special Collection

One Strange Rock

The Story of Earth

Asteroid impact crater viewed from space.

Asteroid impact crater viewed from space.


Only 556 people have escaped the bonds of Earth's gravity and biology to experience the planet from space since 1961. This tiny fraction of the more than seven billion people currently on the planet has a unique perspective on Earth and on life as we know it. 

Life on Earth is possible because our planet is protected from solar tempests and harmful rays by a magnetic field and the ozone layer. Additionally, we are the perfect distance from the stable, long-lasting sun, and our varied planetary surface supports remarkable biodiversity.

Use the classroom resources below to explore Earth's unique properties and processes.

Airing On National Geographic


One Strange Rock is a thrilling journey exploring the fragility and wonder of our planet, one of the most peculiar, unique places in the universe. It's the extraordinary story of why life as we know it exists on Earth, brought into perspective by the only people to have left it behind: astronauts. This 10-part series was filmed in 45 countries, on six continents, and from outer space. Take a trip through and beyond our planet, revealing the twists of fate that have allowed life to thrive on Earth. 

Check your local listings for National Geographic’s One Strange Rock air dates.


Curriculum Guide

Disclaimer: The content of this guide is solely the responsibility of the author and does not represent the official views of National Geographic Education.

Featured Materials

This middle school activity and classroom idea set will help you explore the wonders of Earth

In this image a firefighter in Hayfork, California, scans the air for embers that might drift across the control line, causing the fire to spread.

Natural Disasters and Climate Change

Students use maps and graphs to understand how the frequency of billion-dollar natural disaster events has changed over time.

This image shows western Europe at night as viewed from the International Space Station.

One Strange Rock

Use these ideas to help students better understand the “strange rock” we live on and what makes it unique.

Elementary School Activities

Use these materials to teach students about seasons, weather, and animals and their habitats

Middle and High School Activities

Engage students in understanding their planet and its systems with these resources 

Idea Sets

Use these idea sets to explore the earth with your class


Explore these interactive story maps with your students

Earth's Extremes

Earth's Extremes  

Follow this GeoStory to learn about Earth's extremes, from highest and lowest, to hottest and coldest!


Use these videos to introduce students to different earth processes and species


Explore Earth’s geology, biology, and climate with nonfiction texts designed for the classroom


Encourage your students to learn more about the Earth with these encyclopedic entries


Use these maps to teach your students about natural disasters and earth processes

Photography Spotlights

Use these curriculum supported images with your students


Explore the science behind earthquakes, volcanoes, tornadoes, and hurricanes through maps, photos, and 3-D animations—and then make your own!

Other Resources

Check out these other National Geographic Programs!

Explorers in the Classroom

Explorers in the Classroom  

Transport your students from the classroom to the frontiers of exploration through live video conversations with National Geographic Explorers.

Educator Training

Educator Training  

Join the 30,000+ educators who have completed a National Geographic teacher training program.

National Geographic Bee

National Geographic Bee  

The National Geographic Bee is an annual competition organized by the National Geographic Society, designed to inspire  and reward students' curiosity about the world.