Signs of Life

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In this activity, learners examine photo images of Earth taken from space, and attempt to identify and explain some of our planet's geological features. Learners also identify any biological features, such as presence of water or vegetation, that could be used as evidence of life. Then learners look at photos of the surfaces of Mars and of Jupiter's moon Europa and compare them with photos of Earth to determine what geological features on these two worlds are similar to Earth's, and which are not. This activity can be found on pages 8-9 of the activity guide. [Activity is publicly available through a web crawler capture on]

Quick Guide

Preparation Time:
5 to 10 minutes

Learning Time:
30 to 45 minutes

Estimated Materials Cost:
1 cent - $1 per student

Age Range:
Ages 8 - 18

Resource Type:


Materials List (per student)

  • Signs of Life worksheet


  • Earth and Space Science
    • Astronomy
      • Probes, Satellites and Spacecraft
    • Earth Structure
    • Solar System
      • The Planets


To use this activity, learners need to:

  • see
  • see color


Access Rights:

  • Free access


Source Collection

  • Science After School Consumer's Guide


  • All rights reserved, TERC, 2007

Funding Sources:

  • NASA, NAS5-26555
  • National Science Foundation, NSF 9730728