Science, Computer Science
Material Type:
Upper Elementary
Lesson Plan
Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial
Media Formats:

Education Standards

Earth's Motions and Coding

Earth's Motions and Coding


This is a lesson designed to integrate science curriculum with computer programming for 4th graders.


This is a 30-minute, synchronous lesson integrating science with computer programming. It is designed for 4th grade. Students will learn about Earth's motions of rotating on its axis and also revolving around the sun. Students will then animate this through coding a program in Scratch Jr.


Background for Teachers

To teach this lesson, you will need an understanding of Earth's rotation on its axis and revolution around the sun. Please reveiw these following resources:


Step 1 - Goals and Outcomes


Standard 4.4.2
Analyze and interpret data of observable patterns to show that Earth rotates on its axis and revolves around the Sun. Emphasize patterns that provide evidence of Earth’s rotation and orbits around the Sun. Examples of patterns could include day and night, daily changes in length and direction of shadows, and seasonal appearance of some stars in the night sky.

Objective: Given Scratch Jr., the student will code a program that depicts the Earth's rotation on its axis and revolution around the sun.


Step 2 - Planning Instruction


Student Background Knowledge

Prior to this lesson, students will need to know how to code using the program Scrath Jr.

Step 3 - Instruction

1. Begin class by explaing to students that today they are going to learn about the Earth's motions in space. Begin a discussion regarding what students may already know regarding Earth's motions. Do they know that Earth moves? What makes it day and night? What causes seasons?

2. Demonstrate with props how Earth rotates on its axis and revolves around the sun. Have students demonstrate it in groups. Ask students to determine which motion causes day/night and which causes seasons.

3. Have students view the attached video resource from eMedia, animating the Earth's motions.

4. Review the assignment- students will use Scratch Jr. to code a brief animation of Earth rotating on its axis and revolving around the sun.


Step 4 - Assessments


The assignment of coding an animation depcting Earth's motion is the assessment. Attached is the rubric to grade the assignment.