Study of Gravity Scientists

Study of Gravity Scientists

Course(s)/Subject(s): Physical Science

Grade Level(s): 8

Key Words: technology, gravity, history, scientists

Developer(s) Name: Sandra Lennox

School: Luther Jackson Middle School

Attached Files:
list of web sites
student handout
Approximate Time Frame: Three hours (roughly 2 block classes)

Materials/Equipment Needed: computer lab with Internet access, ClarisWorks

Description of Lesson (includes context): Students will investigate the contributions of scientists to the modern understanding of gravity. Students will place major scientific contributions of scientists who studied gravity on a time line that they create.


  1. What is the objective of this lesson?

FCPS POS Standards: 5

FCPS POS Benchmarks: 8.5.2, 8.5.3, 8.1.12-1

FCPS POS Indicators: 8.5.2-2, 8.5.2-3, 8.5.2-4, 8.5.3-3, 8.1.12-3

VA SOL(s) (including Computer/Technology): PS.10, C/T8.2, C/T8.4



  1. What will we examine as evidence of students' knowledge and/or skill?

Product(s): Time line showing the evolution of the modern understating of gravity through the contributions of Aristotle, Copernicus, Brahe, Galilei, Kepler, Newton and Einstein.



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  1. What exactly will the students and teacher do during the lesson?

Directions to students for proceeding with the lesson:

  1. Review the hand out labeled "Scientists."
  2. Research each scientist using the Internet sources provided to you on your handout
    labeled, "Helpful Resources."
  3. Take notes in the space provided on your "Scientists" worksheet.
  4. After completing your "Scientists" worksheet open ClarisWorks on your computer.
  5. Select Drawing.
  6. Create a time line to show the major contributions of each scientist to the study of

Directions to teacher/administrator using the lesson?

  1. Check the availability of your computer lab.
  2. Go through the list of resources and eliminate sites that are no longer active.
  3. Most students should be familiar with using the Internet for research but it may be
    necessary to model this as well.
  4. On the second day of the assignment demonstrate how to manipulate lines, boxes, and
    text in ClarisWorks to create the time line.
  5. It will be necessary to circulate and help individual students as well as monitor their use
    of Internet sites.


  1. What options in presentation(s) and/or response(s) are suggested in order to provide the opportunity for all students to demonstrate achievement of the benchmark(s) and indicator(s)?

For some students or classes it may be better to have them work in pairs. Some students will need more guidance with technical or writing issues. Some students may be able to create more visually appealing time lines that others, based on their skill level.

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