SC.8.E.5.11

Identify and compare characteristics of the electromagnetic spectrum such as wavelength, frequency, use, and hazards and recognize its application to an understanding of planetary images and satellite photographs.
General Information
Subject Area: Science
Grade: 8
Body of Knowledge: Earth and Space Science
Idea: Level 3: Strategic Thinking & Complex Reasoning
Big Idea: Earth in Space and Time - The origin and eventual fate of the Universe still remains one of the greatest questions in science. Gravity and energy influence the formation of galaxies, including our own Milky Way Galaxy, stars, the planetary systems, and Earth. Humankind’s need to explore continues to lead to the development of knowledge and understanding of the nature of the Universe.
Date Adopted or Revised: 02/08
Date of Last Rating: 05/08
Status: State Board Approved
Assessed: Yes

Related Courses

This benchmark is part of these courses.
2002100: M/J Comprehensive Science 3 (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 and beyond (current))
2002110: M/J Comprehensive Science 3, Advanced (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 and beyond (current))
2001010: M/J Earth/Space Science (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 and beyond (current))
2001020: M/J Earth/Space Science, Advanced (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 and beyond (current))
7820017: Access M/J Comprehensive Science 3 (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 - 2018, 2018 and beyond (current))
2002085: M/J Comprehensive Science 2 Accelerated Honors (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 and beyond (current))
2001025: M/J STEM Astronomy and Space Science (Specifically in versions: 2015 and beyond (current))

Related Access Points

Alternate version of this benchmark for students with significant cognitive disabilities.
SC.8.E.5.Su.8: Recognize that scientists use special tools to examine objects in space.
SC.8.E.5.Pa.4: Recognize a technology tool created for space exploration and adapted for personal use, such as computers, telescopes, or satellites.
SC.8.E.5.In.12: Recognize that technology allows special cameras and satellites to take pictures of objects in space.

Related Resources

Vetted resources educators can use to teach the concepts and skills in this benchmark.

Lesson Plans

It's Not All Visible:

The student will investigate and construct explanations regarding the uses and applications of the electromagnetic spectrum. Students will investigate the various types of electromagnetic radiation with the use of a graphic organizer and create a foldable to represent the EM spectrum, including the types, uses, and applications.

Type: Lesson Plan

Electromagnetic Spectrum Poster Project:

In this lesson, students conduct a brief review on frequency and wavelengh.  Students are then assigned a specific region of the Eectromagnetic Spectrum to research in small groups.  Posters representing their assigned region are created following specific guidelines.  Posters will include frequency, wavelength, energy level and appplications of their assigned radiation.  Students will then display their posters during a class gallery walk with guiding questions.  This allows students to compare the research they conducted with that of fellow classmates. 

Type: Lesson Plan

Spectra and Stars:

This lesson expands students’ understanding of how electromagnetic waves are used to reveal information from imagery taken in space by using c-spectra or spectroscopes, light sources, and colored gel filters.

Type: Lesson Plan

Space Telescope: Optics and the EM Spectrum:

In this MEA, students will:

  • identify and compare characteristics of the electromagnetic spectrum such as wavelength, frequency, and energy.
  • understand the benefits of studying astronomy using the electromagnetic spectrum and appreciate the amount of knowledge available through data and observations such as planetary images and satellite photographs.
  • assess the value of technology in science for such purposes as access to outer space and other remote locations, sample collection, measurement, data collection and storage, computation, and communication of information.
  • be able to describe the vast distances between objects in space using an understanding of light and how it travels.
  • be able to analyze scientific texts and support their findings with textual evidence.

Type: Lesson Plan

Original Student Tutorial

Characteristics of the Electromagnetic Spectrum:

Examine the electromagnetic spectrum and characteristics associated with different portions of the spectrum in this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Professional Development

Bright Lights: Integrating Visual & Textual Information :

This tutorial is designed to help secondary science teachers learn how to incorporate literacy skills into their science curriculum. This tutorial will demonstrate a number of strategies teachers can impart to students to help them learn how to integrate visual information with textual information. The focus on literacy across content areas is intended to help foster students' reading, writing, and thinking skills in multiple disciplines.

Click "View Site" to open a full-screen version.

Type: Professional Development

Text Resources

Sun Sibling Spotted:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. Scientists may have found a star created from the same nebula that produced our sun. The spectrograph composition data, the motion of the star through the Milky Way, and its age all suggest that it is a "sibling" to our Sun.

Type: Text Resource

Light and Telescopes:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. This article explains the types of light on the electromagnetic spectrum that our eyes cannot detect; to make them visible, scientists use telescopes to take amazing photographs. Computers turn the data into color that the human eye can see, so the colors are actually "false colors." The article includes additional links, including the Hubble Space Telescope website's gallery of photographs.

Type: Text Resource

NASA Electromagnetic Spectrum:

This is a very interesting web site about the electromagnetic spectrum. It gives great background information and examples on the different types of waves.

Type: Text Resource

STEM Lessons - Model Eliciting Activity

Space Telescope: Optics and the EM Spectrum:

In this MEA, students will:

  • identify and compare characteristics of the electromagnetic spectrum such as wavelength, frequency, and energy.
  • understand the benefits of studying astronomy using the electromagnetic spectrum and appreciate the amount of knowledge available through data and observations such as planetary images and satellite photographs.
  • assess the value of technology in science for such purposes as access to outer space and other remote locations, sample collection, measurement, data collection and storage, computation, and communication of information.
  • be able to describe the vast distances between objects in space using an understanding of light and how it travels.
  • be able to analyze scientific texts and support their findings with textual evidence.

Original Student Tutorials Science - Grades K-8

Characteristics of the Electromagnetic Spectrum:

Examine the electromagnetic spectrum and characteristics associated with different portions of the spectrum in this interactive tutorial.

Student Resources

Vetted resources students can use to learn the concepts and skills in this benchmark.

Original Student Tutorial

Characteristics of the Electromagnetic Spectrum:

Examine the electromagnetic spectrum and characteristics associated with different portions of the spectrum in this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Parent Resources

Vetted resources caregivers can use to help students learn the concepts and skills in this benchmark.