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Time and the Calendar
These activities allow students to explore many different ways to measure and record time. The most important points are that almost any regular, predictable phenomenon can be used to record the passage of time and orderly patterns of these phenomena help to construct useful frames of reference from which calendars evolved and are still evolving. In addition, any proposed calendar must be compatible with observations. This is chapter three of the online book Eyes on the Sky, Feet on the Ground, an exploration into astronomy as a classroom tool for learning how to theorize, experiment, and analyze data. The activities are fully illustrated and contain detailed, step-by-step instructions as well as suggested discussion topics.
Intended for grade levels:
  • Intermediate (3-5)
Type of resource:
  • For the classroom:
    • Classroom activity
  • History and philosophy of science
  • Space science
Technical requirements:
No specific technical requirements, just a browser required
Cost / Copyright:
No cost
Copyright 1996 Smithsonian Institution.
DLESE Catalog ID: DLESE-000-000-006-520
Educational standards:
  • National Science Education Standards (NSES):
    • K-4:
      • Unifying concepts and processes:
        • Change, constancy, and measurement
      • A - Science as inquiry:
        • Understanding about scientific inquiry
      • D - Earth and space science:
        • Changes in earth and sky
      • E - Science and technology:
        • Understanding about sci. / tech.
Related resources:
This resource is part of
Resource contact / Creator / Publisher:
Publisher: Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory