Solar Energy and Earth's Spheres

Big Idea
The biosphere, geosphere, hydrosphere, and atmosphere are interconnected, as matter cycles and energy flows through them.
  • Format

  • Recommended for 

    Grade 9
  • Starting Date

    Upon sign up
  • Access for

    36 weeks

The course explores the dynamic relationships between various components of Earth's systems. Students will delve into solar radiation and its role in driving Earth's processes, as well as gain an understanding of the electromagnetic spectrum and its significance in studying the interactions between energy and matter.

The course explores the concept of biotic and abiotic factors, investigating the interplay between living organisms and their environment. Students will gain knowledge about the properties and interactions of Earth's four spheres: the biosphere, geosphere, hydrosphere, and atmosphere. They will explore the role of the Sun's energy in driving Earth's processes, including the uneven heating of the Earth's surface and the resulting global circulation patterns.

Moreover, students will explore various types of winds and ocean currents, investigating their causes and effects on climate patterns and ecosystems. The course also examines the concept of the conveyor belt, emphasizing the role of ocean currents in global heat transfer.

Furthermore, the course delves into ecological concepts such as food chains, food webs, and the flow of energy through the biosphere. Students will gain an understanding of autotrophs and heterotrophs, as well as the different trophic levels in an ecosystem. They will explore the structure of numbers pyramids and energy pyramids, and examine the dynamics of predator-prey relationships.

Additionally, the course covers the process of photosynthesis and its significance in converting solar energy into chemical energy. Students will gain an understanding of ecosystem services and the vital role they play in sustaining life on Earth. The course also explores the interconnectedness of Earth's systems and introduces the perspective of First Peoples on interconnectedness and sustainability.

By the end of this course, students will have developed a comprehensive understanding of the interactions between Earth's systems, including the role of solar radiation, the properties of Earth's spheres, and the dynamics of energy flow and ecological relationships. They will appreciate the interconnectedness of Earth's systems and gain insights into the importance of sustainability from multiple perspectives. Students will be equipped with knowledge about the complex processes that shape our planet and the ways in which humans can contribute to its preservation and sustainable management.

What's included?

  • 10 Lessons
  • Goal Setting Exercise
  • 9 Sets of Slides with notes & activities
  • 9 Exit Tickets - Formative Assessments
  • 60+ Learning Resources
  • 1 Quiz - Summative Assessment 
  • 1 Self- Assessment
  • 1 Certificate


    • Solar radiation
    • Electromagnetic spectrum 
    • Biotic and abiotic factors 
    • Properties of Earth's four spheres: biosphere, geosphere, hydrosphere and atmosphere
    • The role of the Sun's energy in Earth's spheres
    • Uneven heating of Earth's surface
    • Greenhouse gases
    • Global circulation 
    • Types of winds
    • Ocean currents 
    • The conveyor belt
    • Food chains and food webs
    • Flow of energy through the biosphere: autotrophs and heterotrophs
    • Trophic levels
    • Numbers pyramids and energy pyramids
    • Predator/prey relationship
    • Photosynthesis
    • Ecosystem services
    • Interconnectedness 
    • First Peoples perspective on interconnectedness and sustainability

Course Lessons

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