# Earth, Sun and Moon 3

In this worksheet, students will extend their knowledge of forces to the 'pull' of the sun, Earth and moon and how we feel the effects.

Key stage:  KS 2

Curriculum topic:   Earth and Space

Curriculum subtopic:   Movement of Earth and the Planets

Difficulty level:

### QUESTION 1 of 10

At the centre of our solar system is a star: the Sun. Orbiting the sun are eight planets.

We know that a force called gravity pulls us towards the centre of our planet, Earth. All objects have 'gravity', but we only feel the gravity of large objects: The bigger the object, the bigger the gravity.

The sun is many times bigger than the Earth, so it has a big 'pull', or gravity. Without the sun we would fly off into space!

The moon's orbit around the Earth is also due to gravity – the pull of the Earth on the moon.

The moon is a smaller object, so its gravity is smaller than the gravity on Earth. We weigh less on the moon and can jump higher!

Without gravity we cannot keep our feet on the ground!  Imagine no gravity - scary!  Let's find out more...

Below are five statements.

Which THREE statements are true?

The moon spins on its axis.

The Earth rotates on its axis.

The planets travel around the sun.

All the planets have the same orbit.

All the planets are the same distance from the sun.

The moon does not spin off into space because of the Earth's...

atmosphere

magnetic field

gravity

The moon affects sea and ocean tides because it has...

influence

gravity

the ability to change shape

As the Earth spins on its axis, what fraction of the planet is ALWAYS in DARKNESS?

one third

one quarter

one half

The length of shadows changes across the day because...

the sun moves

the Earth spins

the time changes

Some planets in our solar system are too cold for plants and animals to live on them because...

they are far away from the sun

they are close to the sun

they are always in darkness

Mercury and Venus are hotter than the Earth because they are...

very small

closer to the sun

tiny stars

If we could travel to Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus or Neptune...

...we would not be able to stand on the surface of these planets because...

our legs would be too wobbly

there is no gravity on them

• Question 1

Below are five statements.

Which THREE statements are true?

The moon spins on its axis.
The Earth rotates on its axis.
The planets travel around the sun.
EDDIE SAYS
The Earth and the moon rotate and orbit the sun. The other planets in our solar system orbit the sun at different distances from it. That's what forms our solar system.
• Question 2

The moon does not spin off into space because of the Earth's...

gravity
EDDIE SAYS
Just as we are pulled towards the centre of the Earth, so too is the moon! In a way, it's falling AROUND the Earth - that's what we call orbiting. The gravity of Earth means that the moon stays in orbit around our planet.
• Question 3

The moon affects sea and ocean tides because it has...

gravity
EDDIE SAYS
Because the moon is smaller than the Earth, its gravity is less, but this force does have a pulling effect on the seas and oceans. In fact that is absolutely vital to the health of our planet: the tides make the water of the seas move and that ensures that oxygen and carbon dioxide are mixed with the water - all life in the oceans need these gases. It is also a brilliant potential source of renewable energy which will never run out and is always there.
• Question 4

As the Earth spins on its axis, what fraction of the planet is ALWAYS in DARKNESS?

one half
EDDIE SAYS
Because the Earth is a spinning sphere, only one half is in sunlight at any one time. Thank heavens it spins - otherwise one side of the Earth would be in permanent darkness! In fact, you can watch as different parts of the Earth move into or out of the light of the sun. There are loads of videos of this online - check it out!
• Question 5

The length of shadows changes across the day because...

the Earth spins
EDDIE SAYS
Remember, the sun APPEARS to move, but that's because the Earth is spinning! So, early or late in the day shadows are longer as the sun is lower in the sky - as the Earth rotates those shadows change shape.
• Question 6

Some planets in our solar system are too cold for plants and animals to live on them because...

they are far away from the sun
EDDIE SAYS
Planets which are far from the sun are too cold to support life, as we know it, because any water there is frozen. The further a planet is from the sun, the less heat reaches it, so it's colder. Apparently, the only other planet people could possible live on, in our solar system, is Mars. However, the warmest it ever gets is minus 60°C because it's further away from the sun than we are. That's pretty chilly!
• Question 7

Mercury and Venus are hotter than the Earth because they are...

closer to the sun
EDDIE SAYS
The planets Mercury and Venus are closer to the sun than Earth, making them hotter than Earth. Makes sense really - a spaceship flying towards the sun is going to get hotter and hotter as it gets closer and closer!
• Question 8

If we could travel to Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus or Neptune...

...we would not be able to stand on the surface of these planets because...

EDDIE SAYS
These planets, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune are called gas planets, or gas giants - swirling masses of gas around a liquid rock or metal centre. WOW! They have massive gravity (it would crush us) but there's no solid surface.
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