Glide Through the Cosmos to Learn About the Stars and Galaxies

Contributor: Peggy Herisson. Lesson ID: 13007

Do you know the sun is actually a star? Or that our galaxy rotates at 150 miles per second? Take the spiral path of the Milky Way to learn about the cosmic energy and the nuclear fusion in the stars!


Space Science and Astronomy

learning style
Auditory, Visual
personality style
Lion, Beaver
Grade Level
Middle School (6-8)
Lesson Type
Skill Sharpener

Lesson Plan - Get It!


Think about it — there are over a billion stars in each of about 100 billion galaxies in our cosmos! And that's just an estimate that scientists believe will grow even larger as we discover more about our universe! It is unimaginably enormous.

  • Have you ever thought about how the existence of a star begins or what our own galaxy is called?

Well, let’s strap on our space helmets and explore!

space shuttle cartoon

We've landed in a galaxy — our galaxy to be exact.

  • Would you by any chance know what our galaxy is called?

If you guessed the Milky Way, then you are super-steller!

  • Can you guess why it's called the Milky Way?

spiral galaxy of stars

The Milky Way is spiral in shape and contains over 100 billion stars. The Milky Way has a large black hole in the center of it that swallows anything that gets close to the edge.

There are a lot of other galaxies in the universe, and the complex variety and uniqueness of the stars and galaxies of the universe are magnificent. There are so many different types, sizes, and colors of stars in each. Maybe you thought these stars were just little dots in the night sky!

There are galaxies that are elliptical, spiral, and irregular in shape. However, the majority of galxies are spiral-shaped like the Milky Way. To learn more about the scientific theories behind spial galaxies, watch the DNews video below.

Why Are Most Galaxies Spiral-Shaped? from Seeker:


  • When you ponder the existence of the stars, do you wonder why they are present, and why they are here?

If you answered, “To provide light for us in darkness,” you are on track!

  • How do these wonderful illuminators of the night come into existence?

Watch The Life cycle of Stars, from Institute of Physics, to learn more about the theories behind the formation of the stars:


The video described different steps and names for the process of star creation. Read the Life Cycle of a Star, courtesy of National Schools' Observatory, to learn more about the name and importance of each part of the cycle. Use the left-hand sidebar on the site and the links in the text to navigate through each of the nine phases. Record your notes in the space below.


Now that you have explored more about the process that goes into the formation of stars and galaxies, let’s travel to the Got It! section to learn some interesting facts about both stars and galaxies.

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