DE.4. Earth in Space
4.1. The Earth/Moon/Sun System
Enduring Understanding: Observable, predictable patterns of movement in the Sun, Earth, Moon system occur because of gravitational interaction and energy from the Sun.
4.1.A. The Sun is a star that gives off radiant energy that drives Earth systems and is essential for life. The amount of radiant energy Earth receives from the Sun throughout the year is nearly constant. (Level: Essential)
4.2. The Solar System
Enduring Understanding: Most objects in the Solar System orbit the Sun and have distinctive physical characteristics and orderly motion.
4.2.A. The Sun is by far the most massive object in the Solar System, therefore gravitationally dominating all other members of the Solar System. (Level: Essential)
4.2.B. The Solar System consists of comets, asteroids, planets, and their respective satellites, most of which orbit the Sun on a plane called the ecliptic. The planets in our Solar System revolve in the same direction around the Sun in elliptical orbits that are very close to being in the same plane. Most planets rotate in the same direction with respect to the Sun. (Level: Important)
4.2.C. Planets can be categorized as inner or outer planets according to density, diameter and surface features. (Level: Compact
4.2.D. Planets and their moons have been shaped over time by common processes such as cratering, volcanism, erosion, and tectonics. The presence of life on a planet can contribute to its unique development. (Level: Compact)