Do you have a burning desire to learn more about the sun? Has this bright light brought about some questions? We've put together a list of splendid sun facts for kids that will spark your interest!
Spectacular Sun Facts for Kids to Learn
It's the center of our universe, but how much do you actually know about that big bright light in the sky? Most people are aware that the sun is the what heats the Earth and keeps the planets of our solar system in orbit. Want to know more fun facts about the sun? Here are some simple truths that may surprise you!
- The sun is a star.
- It is classified as a Yellow Dwarf.
- The sun has a diameter of 865,370 miles.
- It is 4.5 billion years old.
- 99.866% of the mass of the solar system is the sun!
- The sun is comprised of two main elements: hydrogen (75%) and helium (25%).
- This star is hottest at its core, reaching a whopping 27 million degrees Fahrenheit.
- At the surface, the sun is only 9,941 degrees Fahrenheit. While this is clearly still very hot, it is a stark difference from the center of this star!
- The sun is slowly getting brighter.
- In approximately 5 million years, the sun will become a red giant and engulf Venus, Mercury, and the Earth.
- The sun has no moons.
- The planets orbit the sun, not the other way around.
Wonderfully Weird Facts About the Sun
Ready to heat things up? These weird facts about the sun are simply bewildering!
- The sun is vital for life on Earth, but nothing can survive on the sun's surface.
- Without the sun, we couldn't see the moon! The reason the moon is able to light the night's sky is because it is reflecting the sun's rays off its surface.
- The sun is just shy of 93 million miles away from the Earth, and yet, it only takes eight minutes and 20 seconds for the sun's light to reach our plant!
The darker spots that you see on the sun are planet-sized spaces that have magnetic fields 2,500 times stronger than Earth's. These areas are cooler than the rest of the sun's surface and they cause solar flares.
Even though they occur at night, the sun is responsible for the aurora borealis and aurora australis.
It will take the sun 230 million years to make its way around the Milky Way, despite the fact that our solar system is moving at an impressive 450,000 miles per hour.
In the Northern Hemisphere, we are closest to the sun in the winter! In the summer months, the Earth is actually farther away.
The sun can impact satellite signals, which means your cell service could be disrupted during solar outbursts.
The sun's rays can make their way through clouds and water. Therefore, you can get burned on an overcast day and even when scuba diving!
Animals with exposed skin, like rhinos, elephants, and pigs, can also get sunburned. These creatures use mud as a natural sunscreen!
In ancient times, the sun was seen as a symbol of power and as the force that brought about a new day. This led cultures to worship sun gods and goddesses. Some of these deities include:
Ra: The Egyptian Sun God
Apollo: The Greek God of the Sun
Helios: The Greek titan who served as the personification of the Sun
Inti: The Inca Sun God
Kinich Ahau: The Mayan Sun God
Sol: The Roman Sun God and the Norse Sun Goddess
Surya: The Hindu Sun God
Amaterasu: Japanese Sun Goddess
Surprising Facts About the Sun's Effects on People
Did you know that the sun has an ar-ray of benefits? It can also bring some less than desirable, and slightly surprising, symptoms, other than a typical sunburn. Here's what you need to know!
- Sunshine boosts your Vitamin D levels, which helps you absorb calcium and build healthy bones.
- You can actually become addicted to being in the sun! Research shows that "UV radiation causes the synthesis and release of beta-endorphin and produces opiate-like effects, including addictive behavior."
- If you are around citrus fruits, specifically limes, while in the sun, you may notice the formation of brown spots and streaks on your skin. This chemical reaction can leave marks for months, but they will normally go away on their own.
- While the sun can burn the skin, it can also have healing effects for those who suffer from eczema.
- You can also be allergic to the sun! This condition is called polymorphous light eruption and it can cause a red itchy rash and bumps.
- Too much sunshine can also cause premature aging! This is why you get sunscreen that has UV-A protection! The "A" actually stands for aging.
- Small amounts of sun exposure can kill acne-causing bacteria, which can lead to clearer skin!
Don't Forget the Sunscreen
Turns out, our ancient relatives had it right. The sun is a powerful force that can bring great benefits, but is also something that should be enjoyed with caution. Sunscreen isn't just something for summer. It should be used every single day. When you use this protectant properly, you can soak in the sun safely! Now that you know all about the sun, you can learn facts about the moon, too!