Earth is the third planet in the Solar System. It is located between Venus and Mars and revolves around a large star, the Sun. The Solar System is located in a galaxy called the Milky Way. Furthermore, we know that it is the only planet that has liquid water and life. To understand the importance of the Earth, it is necessary to understand what has made this possible.
In addition, as teaching the little ones everything about their environment, the environment and the place in which they live is essential, in this AgroCorrn article we are going to explain how the planet Earth was formed for children .
Characteristics of the Earth
The Earth has a mass of approximately one thousand trillion tons. It has a radius of around 6,370 km. It has a satellite, the Moon, that revolves around it. It is a geoid, that is, the shape of the Earth is specifically a flattened sphere at the north and south poles. The Earth is made up of several outer and inner layers .
The outer layers of the Earth are:
- Atmosphere: It is the gaseous layer and extends from the earth’s surface to space. It contains the oxygen that living things need to live and other gases (nitrogen, carbon dioxide, water vapor, etc.). It also contains the ozone layer , which protects us from the sun’s ultraviolet rays (very dangerous for living beings).
- Hydrosphere: Includes all bodies of liquid or solid water on the planet. Oceans, seas, rivers, lakes, groundwater, glaciers, and snow.
- Lithosphere: Composed of rocks and minerals that make up the earth’s surface.
- Biosphere: Formed by all living beings that live on the planet.
The inner layers of the Earth , which make up the geosphere , are:
- Crust: It is the thinnest and most superficial layer and in it and on it the lithosphere, the hydrosphere, the biosphere and the atmosphere are located. Below is the mantle.
- Mantle: layer immediately below the bark. It is formed by magma, rocks in a liquid state due to high temperatures. Magma rises to the earth’s surface through volcanoes, and is then called lava. It is divided into an external mantle (close to the earth’s crust) and an internal mantle (close to the nucleus).
- Core: It is the innermost layer and is surrounded by the mantle. It is made up of metals, especially iron and nickel. It is also divided into outer core (liquid state) and inner core (solid state).
Earth is the only known planet where life exists . This rarity is mainly due to three main reasons: the presence of oxygen, the existence of water and the ozone layer.
How the Earth was formed: simple explanation
To explain how the Earth was formed to children, we can focus on explaining the following data in a simple way.
Earth is 4.5 billion years old . It was formed at the same time as the Sun and the rest of the planets in the Solar System . At first the Solar System was a cloud of gases and dust. As the Sun was formed, the particles began to approach due to the effect of gravity, that is, due to the effect of the mass of a large star that was forming. Planet Earth appeared after the collision of other smaller planets. Due to the intense clash between the two a great mass of burning rock was created. Both planets had a metal core and a rock mantle, which explains why the interior of our planet has the same characteristics.
The planet Earth that was formed in these primitive times has nothing to do with the current appearance that it has today. This first planet could not support life as it was an undifferentiated rock mass at very high temperatures. Little by little the crust cooled, but due to the internal activity of the hot rocks, a series of fractures appeared that gave rise to the tectonic plates.
Tectonic plates are like the pieces of the Earth puzzle and are made up of continents and ocean floors. These pieces can move, create and disappear, it is what is known as Plate Tectonics . In the oceans, the soil is fractured and the magma from the interior rises to the surface, when it comes into contact with the water it cools and forms new crust. The creation of the new crust pushes the old one and disappears into the Earth’s interior below the continents.
Once the planet was formed, different elements and processes appeared that have produced the planet we have today. Next, we are going to explain how the oceans, the atmosphere, the continents were formed and how life appeared .
How the oceans were formed
The oceans appeared 4.4 billion years ago . The earth’s surface had turned into a hard rock crust from the cooling of the planet’s interior, although even so the volcanic activity was intense. The origin of water on Earth takes place in meteorites and comets. These rock masses contained ice and when it collided with the hot surface of the Earth it melted and formed liquid water. The water vapor mixed with another gas already on Earth, carbon dioxide. This mixture made the planet fill with clouds and therefore could not receive light and heat from the sun and began to cool, the vapor condensed and caused the rain. It rained and rained for thousands of years and the planet began to fill with water, giving rise to the oceans.
How the continents were formed: explanation for children
The appearance of the continents occurred 3.5 billion years ago , after the formation of the oceans. The first continent was made of granite. Granite is a rock that is produced inside the Earth when water from the oceans penetrates the cracks between the tectonic plates and cools the magma inside. The granite is light and resistant so it could rise through the water of the oceans and also resist the subsequent erosion of the water. Later , plate tectonics moved masses of granite and formed the continents .
How the atmosphere and biosphere appeared
Today’s atmosphere is made up of nitrogen, oxygen, carbon dioxide, water vapor, and other gases . The initial atmosphere was made up of very toxic gases, including carbon dioxide, from volcanic activities that occurred on the planet. With the arrival of water, this atmosphere included water vapor.
The composition of the current atmosphere is closely related to the appearance of life on Earth. The first living organisms to inhabit the planet were bacteria that used the sun’s rays to carry out photosynthesis. Thanks to photosynthesis, carbon dioxide levels decreased and oxygen appeared in the atmosphere, thanks to which all living beings can breathe. The amount of oxygen in the atmosphere was so great that it began to turn into ozone, and a layer formed in the atmosphere, which acts as a shield from the sun’s ultraviolet rays, which are very harmful to living beings. Therefore, the fact of having oxygen and the ozone layer allowed living beings to move from the oceans to the continents and finally conquer the entire planet, forming the biosphere..
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