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Astronomy Curriculum: High School for GCSE & US Diploma

High School Astronomy
High school Astronomy course for home educators

Astronomy Curriculum: High School for GCSE & US Diploma

Arise home education will be offering a two-year high school astronomy course, which is compatible with GCSE astronomy curriculum, or can be taken as part of a high school diploma (1 credit per year). This online course will engage your high school student as they study space science: from earth sciences, space exploration, the Milky Way, celestial objects, the movements of planets, planetary science, and telescopes. We will look at the incredible story of the cosmos in this fascinating course.

High School Astronomy Curriculum: Year 1

Our journey begins close to home. By considering the unique geology and atmospheric condition we can better understand the other planets. We will then move to our nearest neighbour the moon. In our study of our familiar home and the moon we will consider the anthropic constants which make the earth habitable.  In particular the relationship between the earth, moon, and sun.

As students begin an exploration of our solar system, they gain the knowledge to find their way around the night sky, and many of the key features which can serve as anchors in their star gazing, they will also learn to be comfortable with the language and terminology of astronomy.

We will look at the history of our understanding of our place in the universe, and the different planetary models which were adopted at various times in our history. The exploration of our journey to understanding the heavens, is a fundamental part of the story of humanity itself. In doing so we will also consider how ancient civilisations viewed the stars, and how despite their lack of modern technology made fascinating scientific discoveries.

High School Astronomy Curriculum Details

Our understanding of space has been greatly enhanced by the various space missions in modern-day astronomy, we will look at a number of these, most notably the moon landings.

In the class, we will look at many of the laws of Physics that underpin the nature of the Universe, and learn how these laws shape the motion of the heavens. From Kepler to Newton and other renowned scientists, we will apply the mathematical laws they developed to better understand the motion of the planets.

High School Astronomy Curriculum: Year 1 Course Summary

Astronomy is a fascinating subject that will awaken your child’s wonder to the glory of Creation. This course will cover year 1 of the 2-year GCSE astronomy curriculum. And it can be used for the US High School Transcript. 

Day & Time: Tuesdays 09:30 – 11:00 GMT (Two 40-minute sessions with a short break in the middle.)

Location: Zoom Meeting

Tutor: Emma Cummings

Required Materials: High School Astronomy by Emma Cummings

The complete course description offers additional details about this exciting class.

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High School Astronomy Curriculum: Year 2*

In the second year, we will consider more deeply observations and telescopes. Beginning with the moon we will look at the key features and how to identify them. As well as the geology of the lunar surface.

The sun is the powerhouse of the solar system, it sustains life on earth. We will learn how astronomers observe the sun, and make our own pinhole cameras, to study the sun safely. Our studies will also delve into the inner working of the sun; and how the sun affects life on earth.

We will study the solar system in greater detail, looking at the unique worlds that are our nearest neighbours in the cosmos. In doing so, we will look at the observational methods used by astronomers to look at these worlds. Studying the different telescopes used and understanding the optics behind them.

This will lead us to leave the solar system to explore the stars. Beginning with starlight. How astronomers can learn so much about stars millions of light years away by analysing their light. Furthermore, we will classify stars, and look at their life cycles, and the beauty of solar birth to their spectacularly dramatic deaths; and the myriad of galaxies that exist across the vast empty expanse of space.

Finally, we will explore the world of cosmology. And look at the big questions of origins, the evidence that everything had a beginning. Arise Home Education is a Christian organisation, and we will look at this question of origins and how the scientific data point to a beginning of all things and the profound implications of this. Although we hope all our students gain a qualification, we hope this course will fill your high school student with a wonder for the world of astronomy.

Year 2* Requirements

There are no particular course requirements. However, this class will require maths skills. By year 2, it is recommended your child is comfortable working at GCSE/Nat 5 level maths, if following the UK Model and has completed Algebra 1 and Geometry, if following the US model.

*Astronomy Year 2 will be available in 2024 for the 24-25 school year.

Looking beyond Astronomy Curriculum for High School?

Arise Home Education offers a range of classes that fit both the UK exam prep model and the USA Transcript & diploma model. Check out the courses below.

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