Skip directly to content

Your Galactic Address: Space, Place, and Perspective

Space and place are abstract concepts until they are defined with quantities, and scale. A child’s spatial reasoning develops as they explore objects through touch and sight. Achieving a more technical and thoughtful realization about your location and size, relative to the globe, however, is a much more challenging concept. Even more stimulating is the idea of your place within the solar system, galaxy, and universe.

Viewing relative location in terms of scale provides elementary school students with a more applicable comprehension of space and place. Teaching “our galactic address” via the various layers (i.e. self, classroom, school, street, neighborhood, city, state, country, continent, hemisphere, planet, solar system, galaxy, and beyond) and the notion that we can zoom in and zoom out approximate distances and depths is a rich lesson, extending the necessary study of two-dimensional maps and three-dimensional exploration.

While this unit focuses on astronomy, geometry, and ratio, the skills are transferrable to literature and higher order thinking for a variety of topics. The idea of perspective is brought to the forefront. Being able to see the larger picture while contrasting multiple positions, both literal and figurative, mirror the practice of critical thinking and analysis. The conceptualization of “our place in the universe” not only deepens the understanding of Earth and environmental sciences but it also provides better access to history, math, social sciences, and hard sciences through language, problem solving, and reasoning skills. It would also allow students to be more reflective learners and engage in their work with an attention to detail, a meaningful purpose, and a consideration for the versatility and unique qualities of human nature and thought.

Amanda Amanullah

Post new comment

Filtered HTML

  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Allowed HTML tags: <a> <em> <strong> <cite> <blockquote> <code> <ul> <ol> <li> <dl> <dt> <dd> <p> <br>
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
By submitting this form, you accept the Mollom privacy policy.