The Milky Way: The Galaxy we live in is called the Milky Way. The Milky Way is shaped like a huge whirlpool. It is made up of at least 1 billion stars. Our solar system is in the Milky Way. Solar System: The solar system is made up of the sun, 8 planets, 1 dwarf planet, and their moons. The planets move in an egg shaped path around the sun which is called their obit. Mercury, Venus, Earth, and Mars are the inner planets and are mostly made of rock. The outer planets are Saturn, Jupiter, Uranus, and Neptune, which are made of mostly gasses. Pluto is the dwarf planet which is covered in ice. Sun: The sun is in the center of our solar system. Did you know the sun is the closest star to earth? It is a giant spinning ball of very hot gas. The outer layer of the sun gets up to 1 million degrees. Mercury: If you weigh 70 pounds on Earth you would weigh 70 pounds on Mercury because it has less gravity. Mercury is the closest planet to the sun. It is made of mostly iron ore, so it is like a giant metal ball. It takes Mercury 88 Earth days to go around the Sun. Venus: There are many volcanoes and mountains on Venus. The surface temperature of Venus is very hot. Venus rotates in the opposite direction of Earth. Venus has no moons. Earth: Earth is the planet that we live on. Earth’s weather, temperature, and atmosphere are just right to support life. About 30% of Earth is covered with land and 70% with water. Earth has one moon named Luna. Mars: Mars is known as the red planet because it is covered with reddish colored dirt and rocks. Scientists think that at one time there were lakes, rivers, and oceans on Mars. Scientists have landed a spacecraft on Mars to learn about it. Mars has two moons. Jupiter: Jupiter is the largest planet in our Solar System You could fit Earth inside Jupiter one thousand times. Jupiter is a very stormy planet. The storms and cloud formations make it appear very colorful. Jupiter has 50 moons. Saturn: Saturn is a very light planet because it is mainly made up of helium and hydrogen. Saturn is most well known for it’s rings. The rings are made of ice, dust, and rocks. Saturn has 53 moons. Uranus: Unlike all of the other planets, Uranus spins on its side. It is believed that long ago something smashed into it. Uranus is an extremely cold planet called the ice giant. Uranus is made up of mainly ice and rock. Uranus has 27 moons. Neptune: The spacecraft Voyager 2 visited Neptune in 1989. Pictures taken by Voyager show that Neptune is a blue planet with a large white cloud that moves very quickly around it. Neptune is a very windy planet. Neptune has 13 moons that we know of. It is so far away that scientists are still learning about how many moons it has. Pluto: Pluto is a dwarf planet because it is so small. It is even smaller than Earth’s moon. In 2006 Pluto was changed from a planet to a dwarf planet.