Introduction
Why do we have seasons? Why is winter colder than summer? Is it because the Earth is closer to the Sun in summer than winter?
This WebQuest will help you understand the reasons for the seasons. Take your time and complete each task carefully. If you do, you’ll be surprised just how much you will learn.
Task
You have been hired by an educational publishing company to produce posters for middle school science classrooms. Your first poster is to be one that shows the causes of seasons on Earth. Since many students have the wrong idea about what causes seasons (they think that they are caused by the Earth being closer to the Sun during the summer) it is very important that your poster be very accurate. Your poster will answer the question "What causes seasons". After you have researched the information for your posters, you will find out from Ms. Adia which poster you will be making.
Process
Misconceptions
The first poster will identify misconceptions students have about the seasons. What are these misconceptions? Use the resources below to find common misconceptions students have about the reasons for the seasons.

Common Misconceptions

Once you have the information about the misconceptions, it’s time to learn the real reasons.
It’s the Tilt, Baby!
The real reason for the seasons is the tilt of the Earth. Go the websites below. Use the information you learn from the websites to explain the tilt of the Earth. You will need this information to make the second poster.
Earth's Tilt Is the Reason for the Seasons!
Earth’s Revolution and Sun Angle
What Causes the Seasons?

Earth Location and Seasons
As the Earth revolves around the Sun, the tilt of the Earth affects the seasons. The direction of the tilt never changes. It is always pointing towards the North Star (Polaris). Using the information from the websites, you will make the third poster. The third poster will show the location of the Earth at each season. Make sure the tilt is in the right direction!
Earth’s Appearance Different Times During the Year
Real Time Sunlight on Earth
What’s Your Angle?

We have learned that the Earth’s tilt is responsible for the seasons. We have also learned how the position of the Earth as it goes around the Sun affects the seasons. The next question is, “How do the tilt and the Earth’s position affect the seasons?” Use the resources below to get the information you need to make the fourth poster.
Earth Sun Geometry


Understanding the Seasons Through Pictures Look fort the section on direct vs indirect energy.


Evaluation
Here is how your posters will be evaluated:
CATEGORY
4
3
2
1
Required Elements
The poster includes all required elements as well as additional information.
All required elements are included on the poster.
All but one of the required elements are included on the poster.
Several required elements were missing.
Content - Accuracy
All the facts are accurate at a level above requirements as determined by the teacher.
All the facts on the poster are accurate.
Most of the facts on the poster are accurate.
Few of the facts on the poster are accurate.
Attractiveness
The poster is exceptionally attractive in terms of design, layout, and neatness.
The poster is attractive in terms of design, layout, and neatness.
The poster is acceptably attractive though it may be a bit messy.
The poster is distractingly messy or very poorly designed. It is not attractive.
Mechanics
Capitalization and punctuation are correct throughout the poster.
There is one error in capitalization or punctuation.
There are two errors in capitalization or punctuation.
There are more than two errors in capitalization or punctuation.