Education and
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at the Lunar and Planetary Institute
Explore! Mars: Inside and Out!

Explore! Mars: Inside and Out Overview of Activities

There's more to the Red Planet than its distinctive coloring! Discover the tallest volcano and deepest valley in the Solar System; take an inside look at the planet's interior; and compare Mars to Earth.

Learn more about Mars
Additional Mars activities are at Life on Mars

Activities Overview

Scratching the Surface
Scratching the Surface explores the features of Mars and Earth, performs experiments to determine how these features form, and discusses what the features suggest about the history of Mars. T

Setting the Scene: Compare Mars' surface features Earths’. Teams of "planetary investigators" examine images of volcanos, channels, and craters on Earth and Mars.

Carving Channels: Create channel features with flowing water, and use observations to draw conclusions about Mars' geologic past.

Volcanos - Go with the Flow: Using baking soda, vinegar, and Play-Doh, to model volcanic eruptions and map the lava flows.

Crater Creations: Create impact craters and examine the associated features. Observe images of Martian craters and explore how the mass, velocity, and angle of impactors affects the size and shape of the crater.

Mars: The Feature Story: Apply understanding of planetary features to a topographic (elevation) map of Mars.

Inside Mars
Inside Mars compares Mars’ volcanos with Earth’s, and explores what they tell us about what is happening inside Mars, and its history.

Summit Up - Comparing Volcanos on Mars and Earth: Make paper models to scale of the tallest volcanic mountains on Earth and Mars.

Puzzling Patterns - Where Does Volcanism Occur?: Compare volcano maps of Earth and Mars and identify patterns, similarities, and differences.

The Icing on the Plate - Why are the Volcanos on Mars so Tall?: Create models with cake icing to compare the volcanos formed on planets with stationary surfaces and planets with moving plates.

Recipe for a Planet: Build edible models of Earth and Mars to compare their sizes and illustrate their internal layers.

Cooling Planets: Discover which planet is hotter inside - Mars or Earth, by considering the effect of size (volume) on the cooling rate of objects.

Mind Over Mars: Create question cards and use existing ones for a Mars feature board game.