Our telescopes can search the skies
beyond the Sun and Milky Way
for bright young stars and galaxies
although they're really far away.
We estimate their distances
comparing them with other stars
and measuring their brightness which
can indicate how far they are..
But if we were to calculate
their distance in kilometres
we'd end up seeing page and page
of zeroes like a jumbled mess.
And so the light year came about
to make the numbers easier.
A measurement of speed and time
that's hidden those kilometres.
The speed of light when measured in
kilometres per second is
three hundred thousand (near enough)
according to our reckoning.
The time it takes the Earth to go
around our planet's solar Sun
is called a year. In day we know
three hundred sixty-five of them.
It only takes eight minutes for
a light ray from the Sun to hurl
one hundred fifty million
kilometres to reach our world.
And that's not far at all compared
to light we see from distant stars.
Those rays have taken millions
of years to get to where we are.
A Light Year in kilometres
is ten million million.
This measurement of distance is
so utterly gargantuan!
The illustration above is an excerpt from the painting A Quality of Understanding Required by Sharon Davson.
At the Science Rhymes book launch on 11th October 2014, year 5 students from Trinity Anglican School read out their poems about The Solar System. You can find their clever poetry on the Science Rhymes website (Your Poems page).
Some treasured comments about Celia Berrell's Science Rhymes
appear on the back cover of the book (below).
These poems are no longer available as a free PDF from the Science Rhymes website. Instead, there's a new set of poems to enjoy.
See CSIRO & Scientriffic Poems below.
CSIRO & Scientriffic Poems
Let The Show Go On is a new free PDF download, featuring 12 poems previously published in CSIRO's Scientriffic magazine including links to further science information on each topic.
Would you like to see your own poem on the internet?
If you have written a short poem about science, nature or the environment, send it to email@example.com for consideration to be posted on the Your Poems page on the Science Rhymes website.
Sunshine by Harmonie - Whitfield State School
Sunshine is an ingredient
in most nature recipes.
Like beautiful coloured blossoms
on a jacaranda tree.
Sleeping in the winter
they are woken up by spring.
And as the purple colour forms.
you'll hear birds start to sing.
A recipe for beauty
always contains the Sun.
And when it comes to nature
sunlight is number one.
When a butterfly shows its colours
there's just one thing it needs.
'Cos it's nothing like a flower.
or some itty-bitty seeds.
Now here is the ingredient
and this the butterfly knows;
sunshine is the only thing
that makes its colours show.
Another nature recipe
All plants must use the sunlight
when they are doing this.
Nothing on Earth would be alive
Because the plants make oxygen
and we need it to exist.
And yet another recipe
is energy from sunlight
which everything on Earth uses
by day, if not by night.
We use the Sun's energy
for more than just its light.
But the Sun's not powered by batteries ...
That cannot be right!
If you have solar panels
Then you would use the Sun.
It would be your power source.
That's how your lights would run!
But the best thing about sunlight
is how it makes me feel inside.
To me, when the Sun is out
the world is open wide.
On those perfect sunny days
we like to have some fun.
But there's someone we ought to thank.
Yep. That's right - the Sun!