Monday, 1 September 2014

Latitude and its affect on solar radiation

The latest ELI is 'Hot or not? - investigating how latitude affects the amount of solar radiation received'. After doing the activity, pupils will be able to:-
• explain that the rays of the Sun will be most intense and so the surface of the Earth will be hottest when the Sun’s rays apparently come from directly overhead;
• explain that as the Sun’s rays move away from overhead, they become less intense because they are spread over a larger area;
• realise that as the tilted Earth moves around the Sun, only twice is the Sun overhead at the Equator, i.e. on March 21st and September 21st;
• realise that the Northern Hemisphere summer occurs when the Sun is overhead at the Tropic of Cancer on June 21st and that the Northern Hemisphere winter when the Sun is overhead at the Tropic of Capricorn on December 21st.
This activity could be used in science or geography lessons dealing with the seasons. As a lead-in activity, try 'Screaming roller coaster'. This ELI will be followed soon by 'The seasons: an indoor demonstration of the seasons' and' Earth on Earth: using a globe in the sunshine to show how day/night and the seasons work'. If you need these activities before they are published on our website, then please contact us.

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