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The Planets 2

In this worksheet, students will answer questions about the planets and their orbits around our solar system.

'The Planets 2' worksheet

Key stage:  KS 2

Curriculum topic:  Earth and Space

Curriculum subtopic:  Movement of Earth and the Planets

Difficulty level:  

down

Worksheet Overview

QUESTION 1 of 10

Here is our incredible solar system which has fascinated humans for all time:

 

Solar System

 

In our solar system, some planets ORBIT nearer the Sun than Earth, and some planets ORBIT further away from the Sun than Earth. 

 

The time it takes for a planet to travel once around the Sun is called a YEAR. Planets further away from the Sun have longer years because it takes longer to travel the distance.  Have a think about that.

 

Planets spin at different speeds to the Earth, so their days are not 24 hours. (Venus has a day which lasts 243 Earth days!).  Have a longer think about that!

 

Does that mean that on Venus your birthday is always tomorrow?!  Let's have a look at our solar system....

Which TWO planets are closer to the Sun than Earth is?

Mars and Venus

Mars and Neptune

Mercury and Venus

Gallifrey and Skaro

Gallifrey and Skaro are...

imaginary planets

real planets

planets in other solar systems

How many planets are there in our solar system beyond the Earth (further out into space)?

5

15

7

A planet's journey around the sun is called a...

day

year

horoscope

Planets which have longer years than Earth are...

closer to the sun

moving slowly

further away from the sun

Which THREE of these planets have longer years than the Earth (because they are further from the sun)?

Mercury

Venus

Mars

Jupiter

Saturn

My Very Early Memories Just Seem Unusual Now - Perhaps

My Very Earnest Mother Just Showed Us Nine Planets

My Very Easy Method Just Speeds Up Naming Planets

 

These ways of remembering the (old) order of the planets are called...

rhymes

mnemonics

poems

The planet closest to the sun is...

Which planet is furthest from the sun (not including Pluto)?

Earth, Mars, Jupiter and Neptune are examples of planets which have spherical objects orbiting them. These satellites are also called...

 

Jupiter and moons
 JUPITER

 

stars

planets

moons

  • Question 1

Which TWO planets are closer to the Sun than Earth is?

CORRECT ANSWER
Mercury and Venus
EDDIE SAYS
Did you have to go back and look again? No problem - scientists always like to double-check their facts before coming to a conclusion. Mercury and Venus are closest to the sun, so their surfaces are really hot - like 400°C!
  • Question 2

Gallifrey and Skaro are...

CORRECT ANSWER
imaginary planets
EDDIE SAYS
These are DR WHO planets! Don't get confused! Lots of writers have written about life on other, imaginary planets. It's like metals - lots of people think that Adamantium actually exists as they've enjoyed the X-Men series! Science fiction is brilliant, but you must learn to keep science facts apart (until the fiction becomes a fact, like space travel!).
  • Question 3

How many planets are there in our solar system beyond the Earth (further out into space)?

CORRECT ANSWER
5
EDDIE SAYS
So, how many planets in our solar system? Eight. The inner two we just dealt with: Mercury and Venus. That leaves six. We're on the Earth. So, how many left? That's right, five!
  • Question 4

A planet's journey around the sun is called a...

CORRECT ANSWER
year
EDDIE SAYS
Yes, it's really important to get these sorted in your head. A YEAR means: how long it takes to orbit the sun once. For Earth that year takes 365.25 days. The same orbit, for Jupiter, takes 4383 of our days - that's 12 years! Well, it's got a lot further to go!
  • Question 5

Planets which have longer years than Earth are...

CORRECT ANSWER
further away from the sun
EDDIE SAYS
Yes, think about it: if a year is a measure of how long it takes to orbit the sun, the further away from the sun a planet is, the greater the distance it has to travel to make that orbit, so the longer its year. Check it out with a friend and a tree (with some space around it): get your friend to stand 5m from the tree. You stand with your hand on the tree. On "Go!" both start running around the tree - see how many 'orbits' of the tree you make while your friend goes round once. Make sense now?
  • Question 6

Which THREE of these planets have longer years than the Earth (because they are further from the sun)?

CORRECT ANSWER
Mars
Jupiter
Saturn
EDDIE SAYS
Yes, only Mercury and Venus are closer to the sun (with shorter years) - all the other five are further away.
  • Question 7

My Very Early Memories Just Seem Unusual Now - Perhaps

My Very Earnest Mother Just Showed Us Nine Planets

My Very Easy Method Just Speeds Up Naming Planets

 

These ways of remembering the (old) order of the planets are called...

CORRECT ANSWER
mnemonics
EDDIE SAYS
Funny word, isn't it? Spelled one way, pronounced another: NEW-MON-IX! There are lots and lots of different mnemonics; the best way to remember is to make up your own. After all, all these three were designed when Pluto was still classified as a planet (can you see why?). We need a new one for eight planets - can you make up a funny one? Go on, have a go!
  • Question 8

The planet closest to the sun is...

CORRECT ANSWER
Mercury
EDDIE SAYS
Using one of the mnemonics, it must start with the letter M - that'll be Mercury, then. No, not Mars!!
  • Question 9

Which planet is furthest from the sun (not including Pluto)?

CORRECT ANSWER
Neptune
EDDIE SAYS
The mnemonics really help here - last one is N, so that's Neptune. It's furthest from the sun. Hang on! If you struggle to remember the order of the three outermost planets, it spells S-U-N = Saturn - Uranus - Neptune. Immense!
  • Question 10

Earth, Mars, Jupiter and Neptune are examples of planets which have spherical objects orbiting them. These satellites are also called...

 

Jupiter and moons
 JUPITER

 

CORRECT ANSWER
moons
EDDIE SAYS
Yay, easy one to finish with. Satellites, whether man-made or natural, orbit planets.
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