NASA produces masses of educational information. Since it was produced at taxpayer expense, we don’t need to pay for it again. One of my favorite links is the “Astronomy Picture of the Day”. Always interesting, sometimes spectacular, the APOD images are accompanied by a professionally well-written explanation. The use in science classes at all levels is obvious.

Sometimes, though, the images have a broader value.

The image for today is a case in point.

The composite nighttime image of the earth is an astounding one.

  • Energy and social issues – What is the amount of energy required to make all that light per day?
  • Geography and population – Why are some parts more lit than others?
  • Economics – Does ease of transportation impact human development?

You will be able to create good discussion questions for your own classes.

By the way, you may also want to click on the image, which takes you to a larger image. You can download the larger image and then incorporate it into print formats, too. While these images are not under usage restrictions, it would be appropriate to credit the source…That’s good style, modeling correct process for your students and simultaneously helpful for those who want to find the resource.

The main Web address (URL) for APOD should be in your browser bookmarks/favorites.

Astronomy Picture of the Day