It's Time for a Revolution! (Around the Sun)

Contributor: Lindsey Congalosi. Lesson ID: 13123

Do you know anyone who thinks the earth revolves around them? Ha! But what does it revolve around? What does revolve even mean? Read more to find out!


Space Science and Astronomy, Space Science and Astronomy

learning style
Auditory, Kinesthetic, Visual
personality style
Otter, Beaver
Grade Level
Middle School (6-8)
Lesson Type
Dig Deeper

Lesson Plan - Get It!

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  • How do you prepare for a trip around the sun?

You plan-et!

Now that we've gotten the hilarity out of the way, take a closer look at the earth's never-ending trip around the sun.

cartoon earth with a suitcase planning a trip

Place something in the middle of your room. Walk around this item slowly, making as big a circle as possible.

When this becomes easy, start spinning as you walk in large circles. Be careful, don't bump into anything!

Okay, sit down. You're making me dizzy!

  • Why did you do that?

To begin a discussion on revolution.

American Revolution

No, not that kind of revolution. This kind.

earth revolution

You may have correctly guessed that you were spinning and circling to model the earth's movements.

There are two different ways that the earth is always moving — rotating and revolving. (For more information about rotation, check out the lesson found under Additional Resources in the right-hand sidebar.)

In astronomy, revolution means to move continuously around a central object. Rotation means to spin on a central axis. Be careful — outside of astronomy, these words may be used interchangeably.

You may have previously learned about rotation and revolution, but you probably didn't get the full story. Answer these quiz questions to identify any misconceptions you might have about the revolution of the earth.

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  • Did you learn anything new?
  • Still have questions?

Watch the video below to review what you've learned about revolution as well as rotation.

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Now, move to the Got It? section to test your knowledge and learn even more!

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