Mercury by Cynthia Sherwood

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1 Mercury 1. Why is Mercury usually hard to see without a telescope? It's often blocked by the sun's glare. 2. Mercury is the closest planet to the sun, but Venus is the hottest. Why? Venus has clouds that trap in heat like a blanket. 3. Mercury was named after the Roman god of speed. Why is this an appropriate name for the planet? Mercury travels around the sun very quickly. 4. How is it possible for Mercury to have frozen ice? c a. Mercury is a cold planet. b. Mercury has a different type of ice that can form in warm temperatures. c. Parts of Mercury are cold because they always face away from the sun. d. Mercury has ice because it moves so quickly around the sun. 5. What does the underlined word mean in the sentence below? Because there's no atmosphere, the sky always appears black. a. layer of air or gas b. living things c. soil or craters d. volcano activity

2 Venus 1. In the Venn diagram, list two ways Earth and Venus are alike, and two ways they're different. Answers will vary. For similarities, students might mention that they are made out of similar material, they are about the same size, they both have clouds, or they both have volcanoes. For differences, students may say that Venus us hotter and Earth is cooler; Venus probably does not have water and Earth has water; Earth rotates clockwise and Venus rotates counterclockwise; Earth has a moon Venus does not. Earth Venus Both Why is Venus sometimes called the Morning Star or the Evening Star? It appears shortly before sunrise and shortly after sunset. 3. Explain how Earth's rotation is different from Venus'. Earth rotates counterclockwise, Venus rotates clockwise.

3 Earth 1. Complete the following sentences with information from the article. Seventy percent of the Earth's surface is covered in water. Earth is 4.5 billion years old. Earth is the third planet from the sun. Earth is the fifth largest planet in our solar system. Earth is 93 million miles away from the sun. 2. What causes night and day on Earth? a a. The rotation of Earth. b. Earth orbiting the sun. c. The moon moving around Earth. d. Wind moving across Earth. 4. Which sentence correctly describes Earth's layers? d a. The crust is below the mantle. b. The mantle is below the core. c. The mantle is above the crust. d. The mantle is below the crust. 5. Describe the temperature at the center of the Earth. The Earth's core may be even hotter than the sun.

4 Mars 1. How did Mars get its reddish color? Martian soil has rust and other minerals in the soil that give the planet its reddish color. 2. Have there ever been living things on Mars? d a. No b. Yes c. Only below the soil d. Some scientists think so, but others aren't sure. 3. Which fact about Mars is true? d a. Mars is the only planet with soil. b. Mars is the only planet with volcanoes. c. Mars is the closest planet to the sun. d. None of these facts are true. 4. What is Olympus Mons? b a. a canyon b. a volcano c. a crater d. a moon 5. How many people have walked on Mars? d a. one b. two c. eleven d. none 6. What is a Mars rover? A radio-controlled robot that moves around the surface taking pictures.

5 Jupiter 1. Tell whether each statement is true or false. true Jupiter is the largest planet in our solar system. true Jupiter spins faster than any other planet. false Jupiter is the closest planet to the sun. false Jupiter has the most rings of any planet. false Jupiter is is the brightest object in our night sky. 2. What is the Great Red Spot? An ancient wind storm that in three times bigger than Earth. 3. How long does it take Jupiter to travel around the sun? twelve years 4. How long does it take Jupiter to rotate around on its axis? ten hours

6 Saturn 1. Write yes or no to answer each question. Can you see Saturn's rings without a telescope? no Can you see Saturn without a telescope? yes Is Saturn the third planet from the sun? no Is Saturn the only gas giant planet? no Is Saturn the second largest planet in our solar system? yes 2. Why is Saturn so cold? Saturn is so cold because it is so far away from the sun. 4. What do scientists believe is in the middle of Saturn? A hot, solid core of rocky material. 5. Which would not be a good nickname for Saturn? d a. the Ringed Planet b. the Windy Planet c. the Beautiful Gas Planet d. the Blue-Green Planet

7 Uranus 1. What are Uranus' rings made of? ice and rock 2. According to scientists, why might Uranus be spinning on its side? A planet the size of Earth may have crashed into it. 3. Which statement about Uranus is true? d a. Uranus has clouds. b. Uranus is a very windy planet. c. Uranus is the coldest planet. d. All of these facts are true. 4. What gives Uranus its blue color? b a. water on the surface of the planet b. clouds made of tiny crystals c. bluish rocks and dust on the surface d. the reflection of the sun 5. What part of Uranus is made of solid material? c a. the atmosphere b. the poles c. the center d. All of Uranus is solid.

8 Neptune 1. How was Neptune's Great Dark Spot discovered? The Voyager 2 spacecraft flew by and took a picture of it. 2. What was Neptune's Great Dark Spot? A giant wind storm 3. Why was Neptune probably named after the Roman sea god? Because of its deep blue color 4. How is Neptune and Earth similar? c a. The are about the same size. b. They both have giant dark spots. c. They both have about the same amount of gravity. d. They are both very cold planets. 5. Which fact about Triton is true? d a. Triton is a moon of Uranus. b. Triton is a tiny planet near Neptune. c. Triton is the windiest known place in the solar system. d. Triton is the coldest known place in the solar system. 6. Which planet is further from the sun than Neptune? a. Saturn b. Uranus c. All planets are farther than Neptune. d. There are no planets further than Neptune.

Earth. Earth is the third planet from the Sun. It is a rocky planet and the fifth largest in our solar system. It has one moon and no rings.

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