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ASTRONOMY 3rd Grade Astronomy Lessons

ASTRONOMY 3rd Grade Astronomy Lessons


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Published by Panayiotis Benas
Astronomy Lessons for 3d Grade
Astronomy Lessons for 3d Grade

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Published by: Panayiotis Benas on Dec 26, 2013
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3 Grade Astronomy Lessons

The following is a set of suggested activities for a third grade curriculum unit on the Earth/Sun/Moon system. The goal is to provide students with an understanding of the motions of the three objects in the system and the way in which they determine the periodic changes we observe. In particular, students should develop an understanding of the way the Earth s daily rotation determines the cycle of light and dar! that we call day and night" the way the Moon s motion about Earth determines the monthly cycle of lunar phases" and the way the Earth s orbital motion around the Sun determines the annual cycle of seasons. #e also discuss how eclipses $ solar as well as lunar $ come about. %ne important aspect of these notes is that we have made every effort to structure them so that students have an opportunity to observe in &ature as many of the phenomena under investigation as is possible. The challenge here is that some of these, li!e seasonal changes, can only be observed by ma!ing observations in different seasons $ re'uiring that the teaching of this unit be distributed over essentially the entire school year. The activities described here are an attempt to combine the temporal re'uirements of observation with a sound pedagogical development of the material. ( suggested timeline below demonstrates how these activities can be timed for optimal success. (dditional materials, still under development, include a unit on light, shadows, and images. Some early versions of some parts of this can be found at http)//www.cgtp.du!e.edu/*plesser/outreachstuff/ . +ecause light and shadow play such an important role in understanding the phenomena covered here, we recommend in fact that the light unit be taught before bul! of the Earth/Sun/Moon unit, as reflected in the timeline. These cyclic changes are of fundamental importance to our lives, and their relation to celestial goings,on has been the subject of intense scrutiny $ scientific, religious, and literary $ in all cultures since the dawn of civili-ation. The literary products of our fascination with celestial motions and their meaning form an ideal literacy connection to this science unit. In an appendi. we have compiled some stories from various traditions that we found particularly enriching. These are at best representative, certainly not e.haustive. In teaching students these subjects it is natural that many 'uestions will arise that are not addressed here, but would be natural e.tensions of the material included here. E.amples of this are the nature and structure of the Sun and the Moon, their history and origin, the story of human e.ploration of space in general and the Moon in particular, etc. #e have included some fragments of such information in the Teacher +ac!ground sections of the units but teachers should e.pect many relevant 'uestions not answered here to come up.


The curriculum materials presented here were produced by /. 0effernan and 1. 2lesser. They are based on material developed by 1onen and presented at 3orest 4iew Elementary in 5urham, &6 by 1onen and by undegraduate students from 5u!e 7niversity, and were written up in their current form by /ohn in the summer of 899:, with support from the &(S( Space ;rant program. 3inally, we have found that teaching this unit has been significantly enhanced by field trips to the 5u!e %bservatory to observe some of the concepts in the s!y. If observatory visits are not practical, we strongly recommend an evening meeting for na!ed,eye observing to render abstract concepts concrete.

Light/Astronomy unit for Third Grade <#ishful= Timeline $ 899>/?. @/A: school starts 5raw season of your birthday" arrange pictures around classroom walls creating a one,year cyclic calendar around the class. Use this for Math tie-ins!! 6an create a connection to the cycle of hours in a day, develop a feel for what B pm or : am means. Tal! about 8> hours is a day, A8 hours is half of that <day or night=. 5o a Sun path measurement. &ote sun should rise and set slightly &orth of East/#est <e.actly East/#est at e'uino.=. C/D C/8AE Start >,? wee!s of light and shadow stuff with 5u!e volunteers. E'uino. $ provide some conte.t. Feep trac! of Sunrise/Sunset times <from papers, web= for a wee! as part of morning activities" !eep the data for future useG >,? wee!s of light lessons 5ay and &ight lesson 1eason for the Seasons. 2hases of the Moon

Eclipses A9/8D total lunar eclipse 6onvert wall calendar into Earth orbit, referring to previous discussions. A8/A9 5o a Sun path measurement. &ote Sun should rise and set South of East/#est. Shadow of Time Feep trac! of Sunrise/Sunset times <from papers, web= for a wee! as part of morning activies" !eep the data for future useG A8/89 Solstice $ can discuss meaning of this in more detail. Feep trac! of Sunrise/Sunset times <from papers, web= for a wee! as part of morning activies" compare the three sets of data from three seasons. :/8A e'uino. $ final summary of seasons, orbits, etc.

List of Activities
A. The Sun Moves in the Sky: E.amination of the SunHs movement through the s!y. 8. Shadows of Time: 7sing a stic!Hs shadow to e.amine the SunHs movement and the

passage of time.
:. Day and Night on the S inning G!o"e) E.ploration of the how and why of dar!ness and

>. #eason for the Season: 5iscover the causes behind our seasonal changes. ?. $hases of the Moon: Each student will create the phases of the moon. B. %here did the Moon Go& The story behind eclipses and whoHs in the way of whom.

Dai!y '!assroom #outines
%ne of the most powerful and productive tools to help students internali-e the rhythm of the cyclic processes, as well as the intricate three,dimensional geometry that governs them, uses daily classroom routines that trac! the various changes. 5epending on taste, available time, etc. individual teachers can pic! and choose among the following recommended activities. A= 6hart sunrise and sunset times. These are available in local newspapers or online. Feeping the charts allows students to !eep trac! of the changing length of day. This need not be done throughout the year, a sample of a few days near fall e'uino., a few days near winter solstice, and a few near spring e'uino. should be sufficient to demonstrate the pattern. 8= 1ecord daily high and low temperatures. Feeping trac! of these helps monitor the seasonal changes. := 1ecord Moon phases, moonrise and moonset times. The periodic changes in these, and the correlation between them, help demonstrate one of the tric!ier aspects of understanding how phases occur. >= 6onstruct an Earth calendar in the classroom. This e.ercise is very useful in helping students visuali-e the three,dimensional geometry involved in daily, monthly, and annual cycles. Imagine that the Sun is located near the center of the room. Some teachers have reali-ed this by hanging a papier,mache Sun from the ceiling at the appropriate point. ( globe, mounted so that it can be moved around the room along the walls, will represent the Earth moving in its orbit about the Sun. %ne wall will roughly correspond to each of the four seasons <there is usually one wall $ with cubbies, door, etc $ along which the globe should not be positioned, and selecting this to correspond to summer is a good idea=. To begin with, therefore, you will need to mar! off along the walls locations corresponding to dates in the year. The Earth moves about AI along its orbit every day <more precisely it moves A/:B? of a :B9I circle per day=, so mar!ing off every DI along the wall provides one mar! a wee!. The globe should be mounted with its a.is tilted so the &orth pole points in the direction of the wall corresponding to winter, and !ept that way as it is moved. The daily, or wee!ly, activity of moving the globe along the orbit helps students recogni-e the relation between the Earth s orbital motion and seasonal changes. It is also helpful to mar! the classroom s location on the globe and rotate the globe to a position corresponding to the correct time of day. The Earth calendar can be e.tended and enhanced in various ways. Students can decorate the walls with pictures depicting the corresponding seasons" each student can produce a picture depicting the season in which his or her birthday occurs, and these can be placed along the walls in the appropriate place. (lso, to demonstrate how the night s!y changes over the course of the year, models of the constellations of the Jodiac can be positioned on the walls in locations corresponding to their position in

the s!y <constellations of the Jodiac are located in space near the plane of the Earth s orbit and the time of the year to which each is associated by astrologers the Sun and the relevant constellation are appro.imately aligned as seen from Earth=. 3rom any position along the orbit, the stars that are visible will be those on the KnightL side of Earth, away from the Sun. #hen learning about lunar phases the model Earth can be endowed with a model Moon <a white ball, smaller than the globe= mounted so it can be rotated about the globe. The daily activity can now be e.tended to include setting the Moon in its correct position relative to Sun and Earth as determined from its phase. Many other e.tensions can be created, these are a few that have been successfully applied at 3orest 4iew.

Enchanted MearningHs (stronomy ;lossary located at) http)//www.enchantedlearning.com/subjects/astronomy/glossary/inde..shtml

Teacher(s )ackground
Setting and Sca!es
The cycles of day and night, seasons, and lunar phases are all governed by the relative motions of Earth, Sun and Moon in space. The Earth is a roughly spherical object, of radius about B>99 !m. Its shape, which crucially affects all the phenomena we study, was first deduced by (ristotle from the fact that Earth s shadow on the Moon appears rounded whenever it is visible <during a lunar eclipse, see below= and the geomtric fact that a sphere is the only shape that projects a round shadow when illuminated from any direction. Eratosthenes in fact made a roughly correct measurement of the radius around >99 +6, though this !nowledge was forgotten by Europeans for centuries. Surrounding the Earth is a thin layer, about A?9!m thic!, of air, the atmosphere. The fact that we live our lives within this envelope ma!es thin!ing about the emptiness that comprises the great majority of the 7niverse a bit confusing. %n Earth, light from the Sun or from any other object scatters off objects around us or off impurities in the air. Thus, we are bathed in light from all directions. In the emptiness of space, with nothing to scatter it, light from the Sun, for e.ample, streams away from the star in straight lines. (n astronaut in space loo!ing at the Sun would be blinded by its brightness, yet the s!y near the Sun would appear blac! e.cept for the pinpoints of distant stars. Images ta!en during the lunar day, in which the surface and objects on it appear brightly illuminated by the Sun, yet the s!y is dar!, are a powerful e.ample of this $ the Moon is too small to bind an atmosphere.

&othing moves unless we move it. The interior of the Sun is heated by nuclear fusion <the same process that powers 0ydrogen bombs= to much higher temperatures of some A. perpetual motion is the natural state of things.? million F.ies. but the atmosphere affects our e.t nearest star would then be : million miles away. with the result that we are KbathedL in light from all directions. #e are all aware that this ma!es breathing in space impossible. we are surrounded by the atmosphere.ravity. This is the reason our daytime s!y is a luminous blue <see the light unit notes=. %bjects slow to a standstill on Earth due to the forces created as they move through surrounding air.perience in other ways as well. or over the ground. etc. Motions. even in the vicinity of a bright object li!e the Sun. (nother common misconception is that motion re'uires propulsion. The ne.Might in the vicinity of Earth arises mostly from the Sun. appear to shine brightly in the night s!y. In fact. with nothing to scatter or reflect it. %n Earth. a rather average star with a radius of some BC9. the Sun $ A9999 larger in radius $ would be represented by a ball of radius D99m <about half a mile= at a distance of about A?!m <A9 miles=. The gravitational force between two objects is proportional to the product of their masses. a moving object upon which no forces act continues to move at a constant speed. The ne. (ny object reflecting the light will appear luminous against the perfectly blac! bac!drop of space. . si-es. while most of space is to a good appro.perience on Earth s surface. and times involved are so large as to defy intuition. To gain some sense of scale.imation an empty vacuum. In thin!ing about space students are also often confused by common sense assumptions ac'uired in their life on Earth s surface.999 times farther. Some A?9 million !m from Earth. where friction and gravity dominate. the Sun is by far the brightest object in the s!y because it is the nearest star to us by far. In the emptiness of space. %rbits. and the Moon. a beam of light will propagate in a straight line for great distances) this is what enables us to see distant stars or gala. This is the universal attractive force that any object applies to any other object in the 7niverse. absent air or ground. (t this scale. and the energy produced by fusion is radiated from the surface as light and heat. These reflect light. Typically on Earth. and %rigins of the Solar System The motions $ and shape and structure $ of astronomical objects are primarily determined by the action of the force of gravity. ten times farther than the distance to the <real= Moon. This also means space is dar!. and left to their own devices objects 'uic!ly come to rest on the ground.>cm <about the si-e of a grapefruit=.999 !m and a surface temperature of ?@99F. water.t nearest star is :99. In space. This is a natural conclusion to draw from our e. we are also surrounded by other objects. This is why planets. it is helpful to consider a scale model of the Solar system in which the Earth is represented by a ball of radius B. and inversely proportional to the s'uare of the . ice. The one most pertinent here is the fact that light $ from the Sun or artificial sources $ is scattered by impurities in the atmosphere) dust. %ne of the challenges of learning and teaching about space is that distances.

and the Sun show up in the s!y on or near an imaginary circle $ the shape of this plane from the point of view of someone li!e us who is inside it $ called the ecliptic. this is not the reason. two important processes occurred.distance between them. while non-ero. a primordial nebula. 3or this reason all the planets orbit the Sun in appro.L Some of these merged to form the planets. This densest part of the nebula was also the hottest. unsupported. Similarly. 7nder the influence of gravity. Thus. The force of gravity causes an unsupported object to fall to the Earth. The rotation as well as the orbital motion of most objects in the Solar system reflect this original rotation. as well as most of the planets. collapsed inward upon itself to form what we now call the Solar system some >. . %ne can e.y s great mass due to its immense distance. others were ejected from the system by collisions. The force applied to those same objects by an ant.imately the same plane and in the same direction" the Sun itself. #hile it is true that gravitational forces wea!en with distance. %ur leading theory of the Moon s origin involves a collision between the Earth and a Mars. the nebula flattened out into a dis!. etc.y is negligible despite the gala. and this eventually coalesced $ driven once more by gravitational attraction $ into the planets. The Moon. Initially the Solar system contained hundreds of small Kplanetesimals. orbiting satellites do not fall. spaceships. collisions between particles heated it up. the force applied to objects by a distant gala. Most of the matter in the nebula ended up forming the star at its center $ the Sun. while Earth and Moon together are falling to the Sun as they orbit it. and eventually at its center temperature and density were sufficient to initiate the process of nuclear fusion. this is the reason that all planets. The condensation of gas and dust into a dense planet heated the material to melting. all these objects are falling to Earth but since they are also moving around Earth they manage to KfallL while maintaining a constant distance from the planet. Material left over from the formation of the Sun continued to orbit the nascent star. 3or e. though they lac! any jets or other means of propulsion <this is often misunderstood=.si-ed object during this early phase. the force applied by the Earth to various objects on its surface. which we call weight. (s the nebula collapsed. so that by : billion years ago interplanetary space had become almost empty. grows larger the more massive the object in 'uestion. is too small to be measured because the mass of an ant is so small. In essence. in which parts of both colliding objects were ejected into orbit where they eventually coalesced into our Moon.plain the motion of an object in orbit as a continual fall in which the Earth <or whatever is being orbited= is forever being KmissedL and Kovershot. Mi!e an ice s!ater pulling in her arms to initiate a twirling spin. the Moon.imately the same plane.? billion years ago. the slight.L In this way the Moon is forever falling to Earth as it orbits.imately the same plane and in the same direction" the Moon orbits Earth in appro. avoid falling to Earth because they are orbiting it. a cloud of gas and dust. Net the Moon. (s the rotation accelerated. and satellites. has avoided this fate for billions of years. revolve about themselves in appro. (s the gas and dust became more dense.ample. Moreover. random rotational motion of the nebula accelerated and became a pronounced overall rotation.

which have been flattened to dis!s by their rotational motion. In the case of the Earth. fluid Moon to be slightly deformed. The Earth is too rigid to be deformed much. these cooler objects do not produce energy and do not emit light. this is the mechanism that maintains the Sun s shape. and rotates as it orbits Earth so that its longer a. which never became hot enough to melt as they formed. the Earth.y. 5eviations from a perfect sphere are also instructive. This force is strongest at the point on Earth nearest to the Moon. in the course of one day can be ignored. we can treat each motion ignoring the slower ones. The tidal forces on the Moon due to the variation in the strength of Earth s attraction caused the early.treme cases of this occur in larger bodies such as the Solar system as a whole or our Mil!y #ay gala. and of the Moon about the Earth. and Moon are roughly spherical in shape. but water can flow on its surface. Moon. The Moon is indeed somewhat oblong. 3or the purpose of discussing the Moon s . 3or e. This means that for the purpose of understanding daily changes the motion of the Earth about the Sun. in the case of the Sun. and the bulges on two opposing sides of Earth are locations of the twice. These changes are the essential core of these lessons. E. %n a larger scale. much li!e a visitor wal!ing around a museum e. #e see them in the dar! night s!y because they reflect Sunlight. Sun.is always points towards the planet. has little effect on us. 5eviations from a spherical shape would be erased by gravity. Smaller asteroids. The changes in relative positions and orientations occur on three different timescales) a 8>. Energy emitted by the Sun as light and heat is the source of heat and light on Earth as well as the reason the Moon and planets are visible. but these differences $ tidal forces $ which tend to draw Earth out into an elongated shape with the a. Imagine attempting to raise a mountain of water in the middle of the ocean. have a profound effect. 7nli!e stars. their shape is an indication that at one point they.is pointing at the Moon. 1otating bodies are usually oblate $ thic!er about their e'uator than a perfect sphere would be. Indeed the primordial Earth was a much hotter body than it is today and was mostly molten" it was at this time that it ac'uired its nearly spherical shape.hour cycle governed by the Earth s rotation on its a. This is the reason we see the same side of the Moon at all times. the Moon s mass applies a gravitational force to all objects on Earth. The reason. li!e the Sun. It would be destroyed by gravity. were fluid in composition. have a variety of shapes and are not in general spherical. (nother important deviation is due to the fact that gravitational forces on a large object are not uniform. is that the star is made mostly of gases <0ydrogen and 0elium principally= held together by the force of gravity. and wea!est at the point farthest from the Moon. 3or the Earth/Sun/Moon system. !eeping her face towards it as she moves. and planets. The Sun is the main source of energy in the Solar system.is" a monthly cycle governed by the Moon s orbital motion about the Earth" and an annual cycle governed by the Earth s orbital motion about the Sun. which causes a small orbital motion of the Earth as a whole. +ecause of the different timescales involved.ample.hibit. This is certainly true of the Earth and of the Sun.daily high tides. The average attraction.Mi!e most large celestial objects. this means that the relative positions and orientations of the three objects drive a set of cyclic changes as perceived from Earth.

The same is true. different places on Earth face the Sun at difrerent times during the rotation. (t the poles. the s!y moves as though hinged on an a.?I tilt but KprecessesL in a cone about the orbital a.is lies almost in the plane of its orbit. whose a. reaching an e.ed.is is fi. #hat you consider vertical depends on where you are on Earth. so that its a. In fact the a. objects neither rise nor set as the Earth rotates. the 2ole Star. This is appro. (n interesting fact is that the a. #e all set our cloc!s so that the Sun will be at its highest point in the s!y around noon. (s the Earth rotates. arc through the s!y. 5aily 6ycle) 1otation of the Earth The fastest cycle is the daily rotation of Earth about its a.is parallel to Earth s a. The main result of this is that to an observer on Earth all objects in space seem to be moving in circles from East to #est.ed. and its differing orientations relative to the hori-on reflect the curvature of Earth.pectations li!ely reflect violent collisions early in the history of the system.daily tides. Most dramatic. objects in a given direction in space are revealed above the Eastern hori-on <more precisely the hori-on drops below them=.is about which it orbits. %f course. the a. is that as different parts of Earth face the Moon. in fact. %ur discussion of the history of the Solar System above would suggest that the Earth s rotation and its orbital motion about the Sun be in the same sense.round.go. our Kpole star.orbit about Earth we can at first ignore the fact that Earth moves about the Sun) it moves little in a month. in fact. as both are descended from the primordial rotation of the Solar nebula. of all the planets in the Solar system. which determines the daily cycle of light and dar! at every point on Earth. (t the e'uator this is hori-ontal. the Earth KwobblesL slightly. but move in hori-ontal circles in the s!y. mentioned above. (t any latitude. Mi!e a top tilted relative to the vertical. and are eventually obscured by the rising #estern hori-on <set=. +ecause this reflects the rotation of a round planet. at all times. This is helpfully thought of as the same effect that ma!es the scenery seem to whirl around an observer who is riding a merry. of course.is is dragged KaheadL of the Moon s position $ tides are highest at the points that faced toward the Moon or away from it several hours earlier. water on the surface moves in response to tidal forces leading to twice. to varying degrees. nor always will be. is the rising and setting of the Sun. completely fi. the a.is about which Earth revolves is tilted by about 8:.is about which the Earth spins is fi.treme case with 7ranus.ed. This means if you stand at the &orth pole and loo! straight up you will see the same part of the s!y <the vicinity of 2olaris. +ecause of the Earth s rotation. Stabili-ed li!e a spinning top. at the poles vertical.tide a. These deviations from our e. hence the need for time -ones around the Earth.is from #est to East.is.is maintains the 8:.imately true.is.L (ncient Egyptian remains show that the . (nother effect of this rotation.?I from the a. &ote that this is true for moderate latitudes.is is angled to the hori-on. (t intermediate latitudes the a. ( given star <direction in space= is either always visible or always below the hori-on at the pole. This means 2olaris has not always. the high.is about which Earth rotates is not.

&ote that at any point along the orbit one half of the Earth s surface is illuminated by the Sun and one half is in the shadow of Earth. because it faces the Sun directly. this would mean mounting the globe with its a. however.999 years or so.is completes an entire circuit about the orbital a. Seasonal variations would be very e. In fact.star 4ega was the pole star ?999 years ago. Seasonal variation is completely absent. the Sun would never set in the &orthern hemisphere and would never rise in the Southern hemisphereG (t the opposing point on the orbit the roles of the two hemispheres would be reversed. the rotational a. consider what would happen if Earth s a.is points in the same direction at all times <this direction is the direction to the &orth star which is why that star is always found &orth=. <This is in fact the case for 7ranus. neither of which is in fact true. Stars located on the ceiling <near the &orth star= would be visible in all seasons. (s the Earth orbits the a. The circles along which points move with the Earth s rotation are now vertical. is related to the fact that the Earth s a. and all points &orth of the e'uator enjoyed continuous Sunlight. (s the Earth rotates.is did not tilt at all. This can be made real for students by posting pictures of the constellations on classroom walls.half of its time in the illuminated side and one. would be cold.is points in the same direction throughout the orbit. 2olaris is thus going to remain our 2ole Star for 'uite a while. at one point in the orbit the &orth pole would face the Sun. each point on the surface <e. which ta!es about :B? days and comprises a year. To understand the effect of this tilt is easiest if we consider two e.is vertical. In the fall they would lie behind the Sun as viewed from Earth and not be visible at night. the weather in the &orthern hemisphere would be 'uite warm. Sunlight thus lasts A8 hours everywhere throughout the year. The wobble is 'uite slow. In the classroom model. 6onsider first what would happen if Earth s a.L (nnual 6ycle) Earth s %rbital Motion The orbital motion of Earth around the Sun.= 1emember that the a.es. it means that over the course of the year the direction from Earth to the Sun changes.treme. %n the other hand. The slow change is referred to for historical reasons as Kthe precession of the e'uino.is every 8B. Most obviously. This seems intuitive.half in the dar!. This means that when we loo! up at night $ which means we are loo!ing away from the Sun $ we see different stars in each season. has several effects as well. #hen the &orthern hemisphere faced the Sun. (t the time of year corresponding to this point in the orbit.is were in the plane of the orbit <hori-ontal in our model=. while the Southern hemisphere.cept the poles= moves in a hori-ontal circle so spends one. .is <imaginary line running from South to &orth pole. with no Sunlight at all. about which Earth rotates= is tilted relative to the plane in which the Earth orbits the Sun. Thus. The constellations visible in the spring would be on the wall near which the globe would be in spring. ( less obvious effect of the orbital motion but by far the most important one for us.treme cases. the region near the &orth pole would be warmest.

The Moon does not.imately 8:. as mentioned above. create its own light. In fact. Monthly 6ycle) Moon %rbits Earth Intermediate in timescale between the daily rotation of the Earth and the annual orbital motion is the Moon s motion as it orbits Earth once every 8C days or so. (t any instant. is rather related to the curvature of the Earth and the angle at which Sunlight impinges on the surface. as is well !nown. because reflecting Sunlight it appears luminous against the bac!drop of empty space. &ote that because this phase occurs when Moon is in same direction from Earth as the Sun. Sunlight will be impinging the Earth vertically. but may be best corrected by noting that in fact the Earth is marginally nearer the Sun in /anuary than at any other time of the year. Its a.L and loo! smaller to you. a new Moon rises and sets at the same time as the Sun. #hen the &orthern hemisphere faces the Sun. however. the illuminated side of the Moon is the side facing away from Earth. The effect of this on the Moon s appearance to us is to create the familiar phases. Nou can see that from this point of view. the illuminated side of the Moon $ the side facing the Sun $ is also the side facing Earth and visible. . Similarly. it is warmer in &orthern regions of the Earth $ summer in the &orthern hemisphere is winter in the Southern hemisphere.is. at any given time we on Earth have an unobstructed line of sight to precisely one half of the Moon s surface. The latter are Kforeshortened by perspective. #hat we actually see of the Moon is that part which is simultaneously illuminated and visible. The side facing us is dar! and the Moon is invisible $ a &ew Moon. It is important to note that this has nothing to do with the actual distance to the Sun. 6onversely. There is a common misconception that summers are warmer than winters because Earth is closer to the Sun in the summer. #hen the Moon and Sun are in appro. so that we can see only that part of the Moon illuminated by the Sun.?I to the <perpendicular to= the plane of the orbit.planation is that near the point on Earth s surface nearest to the Sun.( more precise e. 3eatures that loo! larger to you $ ta!e up more of your range of vision $ would correspondingly ta!e up more of the incoming Sunlight. features near this point seem larger than features just visible near the edge of the visible dis!. This is 'uite false.tremes. while closer to the e'uator sunlight is impinging at larger angles.imately same direction from Earth. is inclined by appro. Intermediate phases occur between these points. The Moon is visible to us. the Earth is intermediate between these two e. 0ence we see an entire bright dis! in the s!y $ a 3ull Moon. when the Sun and Moon are aligned in opposite directions from Earth. a full Moon always rises at sunset and sets at sunrise. +ecause this phase occurs when Sun and Moon are in opposite directions as seen from Earth. the Sun illuminates precisely one half of the Moon s surface <just as it illuminates one half of Earth s surface=. as demonstrated by the fact that &orthern summer coincides with Southern winter. leading to mild seasonal variations in climate. This is most easily visuali-ed by placing yourself in the Sun s position and loo!ing towards Earth.

the Moon dar!ens slightly. it will cast a shadow on Earth. it fails to completely cover the Sun and a ring of the Solar surface is visible around the dar!ened center. rising at sunrise. This is followed by waning crescents. (s with a Solar eclipse. when a Solar eclipse occurs when the Moon is at a position in its elliptic orbit at which it is slightly farther from Earth than its average distance. is thus followed by a wa. only in a small region on Earth <a few hundred miles across= will the alignment be perfect and the Sun totally obstructed. the Sun s dis! appears partially obscured. meeting the plane at two points located at opposite sides of the orbit <the nodes=. ( lunar eclipse occurs when the full Moon is in the plane of the ecliptic. is also some >99 times closer to Earth.ing gibbous Moon rising in the afternoon and setting in the early hours of the morning. as the Moon continues to orbit away from the Sun. #hen more than half of the dis! is seen. and we see one. some >99 times smaller in diameter than the Sun. by appro. Sometimes.ing 'uarter Moon.ing 'uarter Moon is seen to rise around noon <and set around midnight=. Thus both objects appear about the same si-e in our s!y. with the Moon rising later and later at night. It orbit is in fact tilted slightly <?I appro. and Earth can obstruct the Sun as seen from the full Moon. In this region. rising later and later in the early morning until the new Moon recurs.tended swath of the surface to sweep through the umbra. so that it appears somewhat smaller in the s!y. Seen from Earth. In this region. This is when eclipses occur.is it precesses. The result of all this is that the Moon is KaboveL <&orth of= the ecliptic for half of its orbit and KbelowL <South of= the ecliptic the other half. often almost imperceptibly. during the hour or so that the eclipse lasts. #hen the orbit is oriented so that these points line up with the points on the orbit at which the Moon is new and full <we say Kthe line of nodes points at the SunL= the new Moon can obstruct the Sun as seen from Earth.es from day to day. . we have a wa. The new Moon will be invisible. and from what we have said a wa. In fact. and li!e the Earth s a. orbit Earth precisely in the plane of Earth s orbit of the Sun <the ecliptic=. %bservers outside the penubmra will not observe anything unusual at all during a Solar eclipse.+ecause the Moon orbits Earth in the same sense as the sense in which Earth rotates $ #est to East $ it rises later.imately=. in fact. This is called wa. #hen the Moon and Sun are C9I apart in the s!y. %f course. daytime will dar!en dramatically. in an annular eclipse. until the waning 'uarter Moon. The new Moon. half of the side of the Moon facing us is illuminated. and the Sun will shine as usual. ( Solar eclipse is possible due to the coincidence that the Moon. The full Moon is followed by waning gibbous phases. which rises at midnight and sets at noon. the more common penumbral lunar eclipse occurs when the Earth only partially obscures the Sun <as seen from the Moon=. one.ing crescent Moon which rises later and later as it wa. the rotation of the Earth will have caused an e. hence in the Earth s shadow. when once more we see half a dis!. The Moon does not.half of an illuminated dis! in the s!y. #ith its luminous dis! hidden from view. each day than it did the day before. #hen the full Moon intesects the ecliptic. the outer layer of the Sun s atmosphere $ the corona $ will be visible. More dramatic are umbral eclipses. Surrounding this small region $ called the umbra $ is a larger region in which the alignment is imperfect and the Sun partially obscured $ the penumbra.imately >@ minutes.

causing the Moon to appear red=. the Moon dar!ens dramatically. &ote that because the Earth is larger than the Moon. . (s the Sun appears red at sunset when its light traverses a large distance through the atmosphere before reaching our eyes. its umbra is large enough to cover the entire surface of the Moon and dar!en it completely. or upper.when the Earth obscures the Sun entirely <as seen from the Moon=. Mess dramatic partial eclipses occur when the full Moon lies slightly above or below the ecliptic. gra-ing the planet. so only its lower. 5uring a total lunar eclipse. so the light reaching the Moon is reddish. and reddens <the redness is caused by light from the Sun reaching the Moon after traversing Earth s atmosphere. part is dar!ened.

The most important property of this motion is its regular periodicity. repeating very reliably every 8> hours.onto how the /arth-s ti!t on its a0is and or"ita! motion around the Sun create the seasons1 . and more specifically the daily motion of the Sun across the s!y from East to #est. it is shining elsewhere on Earth. when it sets. and formed the basis of ancient cosmologies.shed !ight. without at first worrying about interpretation.The Sun Moves in the Sky $ur ose: %ur understanding of the cyclic changes all around us begins.L %ur understanding of this phenomenon changed dramatically with the discovery that the Earth is round.+ the students( data wi!! revea! the seasona! changes in the Sun-s overhead ath and when com ared wi!! . and why. This is an important regularly repeating phenomenon. historrically and conceptually. provided one considers not only the Sun but the entire 7niverse to revolve around us. )y re eating this activity three times during the year in three different seasons *fa!!+ winter and s ring. and that sunset is a local phenomenon. The Sun. In this first activity we are going to collect observations. It may be useful to point out that it is completely possible to thin! of the Earth as stationary. Today. in which much effort was devoted to the 'uestion Kwhat moves the Sun in the s!y. The most immediately accessible is the daily cycle of night and day. as the ancients did. The three dimensional motions of Earth and other objects are conceptually challenging. and where does it go when it sets. does not disappear. one can say that Einstein s theory of 1elativity which shows that there cannot be a KcorrectL point of view from which to describe motion. that in fact all points of view are e'ually valid. and we will build towards an understanding of them gradually. we thin! of the daily motion of the s!y from East to #est as reflecting the rotation of the Earth itself from #est to East. with observations. tells us a cosmology in which the Earth is stationary is perhaps less simple but no less valid than one with a rotating Earth. This may be a comfort to some students. described as seen from Earth. Somewhat pompously. This point of view is not popular among scientists and leads to a more complicated description of the motions of objects. In this first activity students will observe and record the Sun s apparent motion through the daytime s!y. but fundamentally it is e'uivalent to the standard approach.

cahe. +s summer approaches. 6lass list with students divided into groups of fours to be KSun Trac!ersL The Sun Path Chart (Taken from Washington State University.html) The sun path across the sky is a unction o two thin!s: the earth"s daily spin and its annual orbit about the sun.) Figure 5 *owest winter sun path.edu/CEPublications/eb1857e/eb1857e. &'ee (i!ure 5.Materia!s: . The sun path attains its hi!hest altitude at midday. #n $ecember %1 the sun path is at its lowest altitude and o shortest duration. . The Sun’s Path Across the S y sheet generated by teacher . &'ee (i!ure . .wsu. Figure 6 . Energy Program at http://cru. the sun path !ets hi!her and o lon!er duration until it peaks on -une %1. .out Suns . BH sheet of paper for large hori-on representation 5igital camera or panoramic camera Nellow construction paper for cut. the lon!est day o the year.). 6ompass :H.

/i!hest summer sun path.) Figure 7 Three speci ic sun paths. + ter -une. 1y acin! south it"s possible to 0isuali2e the paths the sun ollows on the %1st day o our months o the year and !enerate a !raphic representation o the sun"s 0arious positions in the sky. . pa!e 5. &'ee (i!ure 7. the sun path !ets lower and the days !et shorter until the cycle is completed on $ecember %1 and be!ins all o0er a!ain.

seasonal variations. Mar! an arrow on the ground with chal! pointing South and be sure to have the !ids facing South the ne. The large hori-on representation will be mounted in the class for your student to use as groups record their hourly observations. If you are unable to ma!e a photo representation draw a free hand representation of the hori-on from your observation location. K5id anyone see the Sun this morning as you were coming to schoolEL (s you see hands rise .Sun system. etcO=.actly at &oon due to daylight savings. Ideally.BH hori-on representation to be mounted in your classroom. possibly in your morning meeting. 5ivide your class into groups of four students to be KSun Trac!ersL Activity: A. and our longitude. that is not shaded at any time of the day. buildings. <e. Early in the school day. or :?mm will do fine= of the hori-on where the students will be drawing. &ote that the Sun should appear due South around &oon but not e. Eight and nine year old students are becoming competent at collecting information and representing data pictorially in order to interpret what was observed and recorded. c. Mastly. The day before the activity go out to the location where you will have the !ids draw their Sun drawings and use a compass to locate the direction of magnetic South.g. 6reate an @L. +e sure to ma!e distinct landmar!s on the landscape.pansive view of the southern hori-on from East to #est. and to which you can return every hour throughout the school day.Deve!o menta! 2ssues: Eight and nine year olds are becoming more adept at holding and comparing two different objects in their mind when problem solving. cooperative teamwor! is advancing to a point where academic problem solving can be aided by providing specific roles for students within a team structure.AAL hori-on recording sheets for your students and a large :H. BH for the entire class. as! your students. d. 2n3uiry Activity Activity $re aration: a. panoramic disposable. (ttempt to piece together your photos and print out a representation of the hori-ontal landscape that your students will use to help !eep trac! of the Sun. The use of a physical Earth. 3ind a location that has an e.AAL piece of paper for each child to use as their KThe Sun’s Path Across the S yL sheet and also duplicate the outline of your landscape onto butcher bloc! paper thatHs about :H . Ta!e a series of photos <digital.Sun model is critical in the studentsH attempts to visuali-e and remember the Earth. print out your landscape onto an @L.t day. trees. ".

0ave your students gather a pencil. 5escribe to the students that today they will be drawing the path or movement of the Sun in the school day s!y. +rainstorm ways they can connect where the Sun is in the s!y by noticing or feeling the Sun as it relates to other objects. or wal!ing outside where in the s!y would you describe the Sun was locatedE 6lose to the trees and building or higher up in the s!y more straight overhead away from the trees and buildingsEL K5oes anyone see the Sun in the morning close to the same place each dayEL K5oes the Sun stay in the place you saw it in the morning all day longEL K#hat is going onEL 8. 2ossible suggestions include) seeing shadows. 3$rior to going outside c!ear!y e0 !ain that we wi!! find out the Sun-s !ace in the sky without !ooking direct!y at it+ not even for a g!im se1 Descri"e the safety ha4ards of !ooking direct!y at the sun1 :. &oticing and drawing the SunHs path has been done by scientists for thousands of years and has lead to many discoveries. %nce at your location.BH hori-on representation in the class. E. 0ave them compare what they see in the actual hori-on to what is on their representational KThe Sun’s Path Across the S yL recording sheet. E. and their KThe Sun’s Path Across the S yL recording sheet and travel to your outdoor observation location. &e. have everyone face the south. +e sure to have your own clipboard. and noticing a landmar! on the hori-on. discuss how the Sun they drew was a model. MetHs see what discoveries your studentsH drawing and discussions led to in this activity. pencil and recording sheet. 5efine the hori-on as the place where the S!y and Earth meet. counting up until you reach the bottom of the Sun. Model how to place one fist vertical or thumb up on the hori-on and continue to alternate fists. 0and out copies of the KThe Sun’s Path Across the S y! recording sheet you have drawn or photographed. in the car. 5escribe how you drew or photographed the hori-on and the importance of ma!ing the hori-on representation accurate so their collected data or recordings are accurate. ?. E.cut out yellow construction paper Sun in the place where they recorded the Sun to be . (s! for a volunteer to place a pre. feeling warmth on the right or left side of your face.as! the follow up 'uestion of K#hen you were in the bus.t draw the Sun in the s!y where everyone agrees it to be. %nce in the class. E.plain to the students they will be following the SunHs path along the hori-on in the South. clipboard. 1ecord the time above the sun and return to the classroom.plicitly show how the enlarged landscape model in class is similar to the smaller KThe Sun’s Path Across the S y! sheet. 5iscuss the objects that are on the hori-on especially the heights and shapes of different trees and buildings. Teach your students how to measure the height of the Sun above the hori-on using their fists. 5escribe the importance of landmar!s on the hori-on in identifying where the Sun is in the s!y. >.plain the importance of drawing or recording what we notice today about the SunHs path so that others can understand what we saw and discovered. E.plain the need to have the same viewpoint so we can draw and tal! about the same thing.plain how what we observe and record outside will be duplicated or copied onto our larger :H.

act location outside to observe and record the SunHs new location in the s!y on their KThe Sun’s Path Across the S y! sheet. predicts and e. and a serious discussion of the merits of whatever proposals they ma!e is probably the most productive approach. 0ave a new group of KSun Trac!ersL go out each hour and ma!e a drawing of the SunHs location in the s!y above the hori-on. which has several panes of glass. %nce bac! in the classroom after their outdoor drawing. 5ay mar!s outlined below. (t this time it is not necessary to provide a KrightL answer. among them the correct one $ that it is shining elsewhere on Earth s round surface. (fter completing the entire dayHs observation !eep the large The Sun’s Path Across the S y up for display in the class. (dditionally as!. K#hat type of shape is the SunHs path ma!ing and how would you describe itEL Misten for what names the children give to describe the SunHs arc. 3inally as!. KL#hat happens to the Sun at nightEL Students will probably come up with several e. (fter each group returns follow the same steps as outlined above in PB. In one hour.actly place the Sun. Invite one student from a group to come up and place a new pre. K#here do you thin! the Sun is going to be ne. +e sure the student labels the recording time above the Sun and describes what landmar!s he/she used to decide where to e.plain your thin!ingEL and have them place a new pre. If you have a South. Find a south-facing window. B. how will its position be different from out first drawingEL K#hy will it be differentEL 0ave groups of students discuss their predictions together and be prepared to share their thin!ing with the class. Each group observes.plain the importance of accuracy and using the landmar!s to assist in locating the SunHs location. . records. E.planations. The idea here is to present the problem. pi'ue their curiosity. Instruct the KSun Trac!ersL that they will need to locate and draw the SunHs position in connection to a landmar! or object on the hori-on and record the e.plains. gain the classH attention and as! the group that returned from outside.act time of their observation. 2romise that the subject will be pursued further later on.plain why they thin! the Sun will be in this location. (s! them to e. K0ow did the groupHs predictions an hour ago match where the Sun is nowEL &e. C. (s! the class. and start them thin!ing about it.in the s!y. (s!. This was a device used by farmers in Skåne.circleE 6ircleEL @. Class Noon-Line Project Another project could be making a window Noon Line.cut yellow construction paper Sun in the place where the Sun will be in one hour.cut out sun on the large sheet. have the first group of KSun Trac!ersL <a group of four students= return to the e. KIf you go out and draw the SunHs position in one hour.facing window try to ma!e the Mid. K#hat shapes can be made from the SunHs pathE 0alf. (fter several drawings a definite shape is forming from the SunHs path.t hour and e. D.t as! them. Sweden to mark Midday.

Notice how the solid framework between the panes casts shadows onto the window sill. . Whenever the shadow of the pane frame matches the line of tape that means it is Midday. When the Sun is at its highest point (at Midday) you can mark the line of the shadow cast by the pane frame with masking tape. This effectively turns the window into a simple sundial.

%ptimally. The three recommended times are) .is and its relation to the differing amount of sunlight hitting the Earth.stic! <an old broomstic! wor!s if cut appro. @H sheet of plywood .imately two months from start date= . Mid. In the late fall after you have taught lessons on the properties of light . #hile the last activity helped solidify our understanding of the EarthHs shape and movement.3ebruary <appro.class list of students divided into groups of four students a!a KShadow Trac!ersL Teacher )ackground: %ur understanding of the passage of time is based upon the motion of the sun or should we say the Kspin cycleL of the Earth. Mate (pril or early May <four months from start date= Materials) .tend discovering connections between the path of the Sun across the s!y and the passage of time using direct observation and recording. and ruined= . you should do this activity three times during the year. The sun cloc! will enable students to visually understand the relationship between the sunHs motion and our concept of time.imately to AHBL long= secured in a coffee can of stones or something to secure it .waterproof mar!ers for recording <chal! can get smudged. This activity relies on the students remembering and understanding from their "ight Unit activities that the height and direction of a light source will change the lengths and orientation of the shadow.>H . washed away. The measurements will !eep trac! of the stic!Hs shadow and allow us to read a sun cloc!. (llowing your students to record the changes in the sunHs movement during three different seasons translates into understanding the tilt of the Earth on its a.Shadows of Time: 5sing a stick-s shadow to e0amine the Sun-s movement and the assage of time $ur ose: #e will e. 7sing a stic! measuring system to . this activity will continue to use the SunHs path across the s!y but this time so we can ma!e accurate measurements of its path.

 The stic!Hs shadow is shortest at mid. a stic! and mar!ers to record the shadows and times each hour.  The shadows will begin to the #est of the stic!.act outdoor location where you made your observations in the The Sun Moves in the Sky! (ctivity and secure a >H . Activity: A.day. long then short and finally long again. 2osition the stic! near the south side of the wood.bloc! paper. the shorter the shadow. If it hasnHt been stated already reinforce that the Sun is moving from left to right or from East to #est. (s!.  There is a direct correlation between the angle of the Sun above the hori-on and the length of the shadows behind objects $ the higher the Sun.periments as we moved the flashlights to ma!e the shadow longer and slanted. (s!.t as!. &e. K5oes anyone !now what time it isEL Mar! the tip of the stic!Hs shadow with a dar! mar!er and label the time and date near the mar!. E.collect data about the si-e and orientation of the SunHs shadow the students will begin to learn)  the stic!Hs shadow pattern will loo! li!e a fan of lines. . 8. @H sheet of plywood down at your location with one side facing due south. The plywood is ideal so that you can paint over it and have a permanent location but the paper is ideal if you want to compare several different representations of the shadowHs path.plain that we will be collecting data outdoors today of how a stic!Hs shadow changes each hour over the course of a school day. 6onnect their understanding about the position of the flashlight to what we will discover about the position of the Sun. %nce outside with the students have them sit on the north or top edge to avoid human shadows on the wood. 2n3uiry Activity: $re aration: 7se the e. The construction of a Sun 6loc! will assist students to apply systematic observation s!ills in order to have a better sense of KtimeL as it connects to the movement of the Sun. K0ow do shadows change throughout the dayEL (s! them to remember bac! to our light and shadow e. 5iscuss how we will use a large sheet of wood. BH piece of butcher. who can draw it on the boardEL 6ompare the studentHs drawing from memory with your saved and hopefully displayed large representational drawing from the last activity. If you canHt use plywood use a :H . Intro) K5oes anyone remember the path of the sun across the s!y from The Sun Moves in the Sky! (ctivityE If you do. therefore the light source must be on the East.  The shadows will continue to the East with steeper angles to the edge of the paper.

(dditionally. as! the group when they return K0ow could the change in the shadowHs si-e and position be connected to the SunHs changing positionEL If they do not see the connection donHt give them the answer yet but !eep as!ing each group the 'uestion after each shadow mar!ing.plain your answers. :. 7se the same groups of student KSun Trac!ersL but this time theyHre called KShadow Trac!ersL. 3inally as! the children. K#here is the shadowEL and your answer should include to the right.t hour and place a stone at the predicted position. K#hy do the shadowsH position and height changeE 0ow is the shadow si-e and position affected by the position of the SunE 5oes anyone notice a pattern connected to where the shadows fall and their lengthsE E. In one hour send the first group outside to e.L 0ave a student use a stone to mar! how high and in what new position they predict the ne. 0ave the group ma!e a prediction for the ne. K0ow did the stic!Hs shadow change throughout the dayEL If the group is not mentioning the role of the SunHs position in the s!y.amine where the stic!Hs shadow is falling. &ow as!. initially as!. If this is not possible. (s! them to e. have a class meeting first thing the following morning. have a whole class session out at the observation site. when its time to record the last hourHs shadow mar!. ?. KIf we come out in 3ebruary will our shadow mar!s and pattern be the same or differentE E. If possible.amine how the shadow has changed and without loo!ing at the Sun directly describe how the Sun has changed position in the s!y. 5uring the whole group session.t shadow will fall. (s!.plain why you see a patternE Is the Sun directly overhead at any timeE #hy is the shortest shadow around noonE #hy does the shortest shadow point &orthE +riefly discuss how Sun 5ials have been used for thousands of years to tell the time based on shadows much li!e we figured out today. as!. #hen you thin! they get the connection as!. Ensure that the students are labeling the times near the shadow mar!s. K(re our days having more or less lightE Is the Sun setting after school earlier or laterEL 3rom /une 8A until <Summer Solstice= around 5ecember 8A <#inter Solstice= the number of sunlight hours decreases and from 5ecember 8A to /une 8A the number of sunlight hours increases.K#here is the SunEL and your answers should include to the left or east.L It is not necessary to go into detail to correct their misconceptions but ac!nowledge any answer that mentions that the SunHs path will get higher in the s!y and will ta!e longer to pass through the s!y therefore decreasing the length of the shadows and changing their hourly positions. 0ave the students mar! the shadowHs position with a mar!er and label the time near the mar! on the plywood. 3ollow up by as!ing. . (ttempt to go outside with a couple of the KShadow Trac!ersL groups throughout the day and discuss how the changes in the shadowHs si-e are connected to the position of the Sun. 7sing a meter stic! as! someone to measure the shadow. K#hen do you thin! the stic!Hs shadow will be the shortestE MongestEL >. KIn an hour who can predict where and how long the stic!Hs shadow will beE 1emember from our drawings of the SunHs path across the s!y and thin! how that will change the shadow.

you are able to repeat this activity twice before the end of the year.B. the changing temperature in each season. the time of day. Ideally. . and the differing amount of sunlight. (llowing the students to compare and discover the change in the shadowHs arched path in three different seasons will assist in their ability to connect the SunHs altitude or height in the s!y. the passage of time. Ta!e a recording following the same methods in the same location. two months later in winter and four months later in Spring.

students saw how shadows changed during a day. Nou can suggest that if the globe were the real Earth. 7se a figurine to represent a person standing on the Earth near the &orth pole.Day and Night on the S inning G!o"e ( similar activity can be found at http)//hea. when held in the beam of light.html In the previous activity.edu/E6T/theQboo!/6hapA/6hapterA.imately at top" for todayHs purpose the tilt of the a. (s! students where the person would be loo!ing if they were to loo! Kup. A. from about the same direction so that they can see both the illuminated and the dar! side of the globe at once. %ne of the first concepts that need to be understood is the effect of the EarthHs shape on our ideas of orientation. This activity re#uires a dar ened room$ a Materia!s: Earth globe" strong focused light source <such as an overhead projector or a slide projector=" golf tees or paper clasps to create shadows on globe" small figurines" fun tac! or similar material for each group of five if possible" a picture of Earth ta!en from space can be helpful.L #here would they loo! if they loo!ed KdownEL 3or a person near the pole.www. E. they would be rather large. 8. without blinding any students with its glare. Show students the globe and discuss its use as a model for the Earth. The students should all be able to see the globe.is is irrelevant. This activity uses a globe and indoor light source to create a classroom model showing day and night on spinning Earth. Set up the light source so that it can shine from left to right across the front of the classroom.harvard. these directions align 'uite well with KupL and KdownL in the . since they are far larger than the globeG Mar! your geographic location on the globe.plain the idea of scale. The globe should be held with the &orth pole appro.

0ave them identify a time the figurine would consider KdayL and a time it would consider Knight. off the Earth. &ow attach a second figurine to another part of the globe. &ow position the figure in the southern hemisphere.L (s! them whether the person can see the Sun. Is it similar to the pattern cast by the shadow stic! in the previous activitiesE &ote that the shortest shadow points towards the &orth 2ole. B. and repeat the 'uestion. (s! then what they might see if they loo!ed down at Earth from their location in space. :.L to which you can respond by offering imaginary spacesuits" you may get Kno gravity. &ot only half the Earth is illuminated. K0ave you ever been on a smoothly riding car or train and loo!ed out the window ad it loo!ed li!e everything on the outside was moving and you felt li!e you were standing .L (s! them how long they thin! it ta!es the Earth to complete a full rotation" the relation to night and day should lead to the right answer. Encourage them to imagine they are out in space.li!e shadow pattern that the golf tee casts. whether they create a shadow. ?. Nou should hear that Earth rotates. so they should see this. 1epeat this until students are comfortable with the relative nature of KupL and KdownL on a spherical planet.L to which the response is that in fact gravity does e. and you will need to help them see that at any point on Earth. Eventually. Nou should get Kno air. It is sometimes helpful to show the figuring performing e. and as! for some differences they would notice. 0alf of the globe will seem to KglowL because Sunlight is reflected. Turn on the overhead. +ut not all people on earth. (ttach a golf tee to the globe at your latitude. 2lace the figurine on the globe at a location where the Sun is Koverhead.L at which point you can turn off the lights to simulate this situation. (ttach a figurine to the globe at your location with fun tac!. KupL is the direction away from Earth. people on Earth can now see things around them because the Earth is illuminated. It seems as though half of the world should be in perpetual dar!ness and half in perpetual light. Slowly turn the globe from %est to &ast so that the figurine RseesR the Sun rise in the east and set in the west. Move the figurine to a location on the side of the globe away from the KSunL and repeat the 'uestions. but is not felt in an orbiting spacecraft <only bring this complication up when necessary to correct a very pervasive misconception=. (s! them why this is not the case.classroom. would represent outer space. at various locations. (gain.aggerated KjumpsL off the Earth and KfallingL bac! to Earth. E. their location in class. 5oes the Sun rise earlier or later in this new locationE (re the figurines always both in light or both in dar!nessE %r can one be in light while the other is in dar!nessE #hat if the two figurines were on opposite sides of the EarthE E.tend to space. slowly turn the globe eastward and notice the fan. >.plain the concept of time -ones and the reason day at your location is night at other locations on Earth.uide them through 'uestions to the reali-ation that if the globe in your hand were the real Earth. (s!. while KdownL is toward the Earth. they should come up with KitHs dar!. li!e the SunE The answer is no" the Earth is visible from space only because it is illuminated by Sunlight.plain that we will use the overhead to represent the Sun today $ note that unli!e the real Sun this projects light only in a particular direction $ convenient for our purposes today. D. (lso. There will be some confusion. @. Is the Earth glowing. causing light and dar! to alternate at each point. .

C.htm . RtopR.is at close to A. ( game of comparing predictions using the globe with observed conditions can be constructed. when the Sun is highest in the s!yE Is there any shadow at the e'uatorE #hat about at your latitudeE #here do all the shortest shadows pointE 5oes the pattern made by the golf tee reasonably match that made by the shadow stic! of the previous activitiesE Might a spinning earth. (re they consistent with the differences seen on the spinning globeE 0ave the students observed any complications that our model does not account forE <More on these. what should we notice about things that are Koff the carouselEL (s! them to name things that are not on Earth" try to get them to reali-e that the apparent motion of the Sun <and all other objects in space= is precisely of this nature. be sure to observe the midday shadows and to note in which direction they point. (ttach three golf tees to the globe at various latitudes along the same meridian of longitude. If Earth is li!e a carousel. 5o you feel the earth moveE +ut in fact we are rotating on our a.et the Earth to rotate slowly and as! them K0ow long it ta!es for the earth to rotate onceEL (s! Kwhen you are on a carousel and you loo! at the carousel horse you are riding. %ne should be on the e'uator. (re the golf tee shadows longer or shorter at the e'uatorE #hat about at noon. then. does she appear to be movingEL They should discover that objects off the carousel appear to be revolving around it.999 miles per hour. (lso. such as the tilt of the Earth in the ne. as! the students to call out their golf tee.= ( useful and fun activity connected to this lesson would be to compare livecam pictures at one time from various locations on Earth. as they cross the day.t chapter. RmiddleR. or RbottomR. in a direction opposite to the direction in which the carousel spins. Discussion: 0ow do we !now if we re spinning the globe in the right directionE #here does the Sun rise if we were standing on the globeE #here does it really riseE SetE #hat if we spun the globe in the other directionE #ould this also match our observationsE It is only by such comparisons with observations that we can verify our models.stillEL 5escribe now how in the same way because we ride on the spinning earth it seems the Sun and the stars are moving as day and night changes and we fell we are staying still. (s! three students to each observe one of the golf tees. (s! Kif your mother is waiting near the carousel. not be a reasonable model for the passage of day and nightE #hat if the Earth didn t rotateE #hat if the &orth 2ole were pointed towards the SunE #here would it be day and nightE #ould all locations still have both day and nightE 6an you thin! of any other ways to test this model of a spinning EarthE Maybe shadow stic! patterns from schools at other latitudes could be compared to yours. . providing a concrete reali-ation of the idea that time of day differs. and one should be near the poles.com/*o-one/cam8. one should appro.imate your latitude. does it appear to be movingEL (fter some confusion.night boundary. 2nternet Live 'am address: http)//www. (s the globe slowly spins. they should reali-e it will appear to be moving up and down only.rtBB.

&ame QQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQ Day and Night 2n each of these ictures+ we see the Sun on the !eft and the /arth on the right1 %e are !ooking down at the /arth from a"ove the North o!e1 The arrow shows the direction of /arth-s rotation *to the /ast. 71 5raw a stic! figure on the Earth where it is noon. so that the person would see the Sun right over their head. #ill the person ma!e a shadowE QQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQQ . 6olor the part of the Earth where it is day in yellow.1 61 Sunlight will hit one side of the Earth. and the side of the Earth where it is night in blac!.

91 5raw a stic! figure of a person for whom it is midnight. #ill the person ma!e a shadowE 5raw an arrow to show the direction of the shadow. 81 5raw a stic! figure of a person for whom it is evening.31 5raw a stic! figure of a person for whom it is morning. #ill the person ma!e a shadowE 5raw an arrow to show the direction of the shadow. . #ill the person ma!e a shadowE 5raw an arrow to show the direction of the shadow.

leaving about one inch for every hour. Materia!s: Marge paper from roll <: SB =" mar!ers" yardstic!" pencil" circle labels" paints" adhesive dots" daily local newspaper. %n a large sheet of paper.is. %ne can observe these changes by recording the times of sunrise and sunset and measuring the length of the day. but also the number of daylight hours. the days grow shorter and the nights longer. The date of the observation will be recorded along the hori-ontal a. ma!e a grid on which to plot the sunrise and sunset times. If begun in September and continued through the #inter Solstice <about 5ecember 88=. 6hanges in these times are large enough <about a minute a day= to be seen on a graph. The figure below shows such a graph made from sunrise and sunset times at the &ational %ptical (stronomical %bservatory located on Fitt 2ea! near Tucson. <around March 8A= and the (utumnal E'uino. the graph should show the gradual decrease in the number of daylight hours <in the &orthern hemisphere= with the minimum at the #inter Solstice.is.  A. These two effects combine to create the weather we usually associate with each season. mar!ing the points with adhesive dots. There are two e'uino. Moo! up the times of sunrise and sunset in a daily newspaper. the Summer Solstice <longest day. 2lot these times on the graph. <around September 88=. connect the dots with a line.es. shortest night= occurs around /une 8A. The time of day should run along the vertical a. 8.  .es on the graph as well. (fter plotting for several wee!s. (ri-ona for September to 5ecember. It would be interesting to include either of the e'uino. during which the hours of daylight and night are e'ual) the 4ernal E'uino.5aily Monitoring of Sunrise and Sunset Times The tilt of the Earth in its orbit about the Sun affects not only the intensity of the solar radiation at a given location. In the &orthern 0emisphere. 3rom /une 8A to 5ecember 8A.

www.html .act form of this activity is not important.harvard. 3rom newspapers or broadcast newscasts. &otice that the shortest day occurs around 5ecember 8A. (s such.si-ed chart combining sunrise. #ith clear presentation of data.edu/E6T/theQboo!/6hap8/6hapter8. correlate the temperature measurements with the shadow stic! and dome measurements. :. and from which conclusions li!e Rwinter s comingR can be made. 3or younger students. as e. Sometimes ma!ing a simple graph can e. perhaps noon or lunchtime. which we see!.sunset data with the daily temperature. 0ow does the length of the day change with seasonE 5oes the daily temperature match this trend alsoE 1ecording 5aily 0igh and Mow Temperatures #eather is the result of an almost incalculable number of events.ample. Discussion The figure below shows a plot of sunrise and sunset times ta!en once a wee! from September through 5ecember. it would be folly to attempt to predict a given city s temperature for a given date. These can be plotted on a graph or entered into a database. It would be e'ually foolish to point to an e. it is much easier to move forward and. far into the future. #esources: Everyday 6lassroom ToolHs) 6hapter 8 The EarthHs %rbit http)//hea. Simplicity is the !ey.plain pages and pages of numbers. as collected in the previous activity. try ma!ing a wall. it is the general trends. hidden among the randomness are trends which can be measured. the class can collect local high and low temperature readings for each day. %ptional) These coordinates can be stored and plotted with a computer spreadsheet li!e (pple#or!s. In order to reinforce the connection between the number of daylight hours and average daily temperature. 0owever. #hile daily fluctuations in the temperature will be apparent. a classroom chart with cartoon thermometers with daily temperature mar!s can be made.ceptionally cold day in /une and declare R#inter s comingGR There are just too many variables for such a simplistic view. for e. %ne should emphasi-e the importance of recording data in an appropriate way. The e.pected. The class can measure the outside temperature at a particular time each day.

the Southern 0emisphere has winter.. If you remember bac! to the activity The Sun Moves in the Sky! you will notice the arc of the sun across the s!y changes as the seasons change.portable iboo! computer cart or do activity in the computer lab .degree light source <best if you have :?9 watt bulb= .round ride Earth travels on year after year as we rotate around the Sun. direct sunlight to cause hotter temperatures.perience seasonal weather and temperature changes yearly.lobe . The connection between the EarthHs tilt. golf tees or other small items to act as a human on the globe . many believe the Earth is closer to the Sun in summer than winter thus causing the higher temperatures. students will be lead to understand the fact that during the &orthern summer the &orth 2ole is tilted towards the Sun and during the winter.normal merry.Mamp or another :B9. it is tilted away. The higher the Sun appears in the summer s!y the longer the amount of daylight and that translates into more intense.is effect the seasons. This demo activity displays how the EarthHs orbit around the Sun and tilt on its a.clay or other stic!y material to attach small items on globe . we grapple with understanding why and how the Seasons occur.The #easons for the Seasons $ur ose: #hat causes the seasons to occur and changeE #hat allows for the seasonal changes to be consistent year after yearE (lthough we witness and e. the length of daylight and the temperature in each hemisphere is dependent on this not so. #hen as!ed K#hat ma!es the Seasons occurEL some of your students <and most adults= will answer by describing the differences in temperature and weather from season to season.go. Students will begin to e.lego persons. (dditionally.plore how the EarthHs tilt determines the fact that while the &orthern 0emisphere has summer.posure in The Reasons for the Seasons (ctivity will help them visuali-e the causal lin! between the EarthHs tilt and orbit and our seasonal changes.posure to these facts and demos over the years but their initial e. Materia!s: . (dditionally. Nour students may need further e. The EarthHs tilt causes the sun to appear higher in the s!y during the summer and lower or closer to the hori-on during winter.

KIs it day or night for the personE 0ow do you !nowEL (s!.periencing day when 5urhamHs person is in the dar! of night.periencing nightE (nd e. lego person= to show your positions on Earth. (s!.planations for the reasons for the seasons$ 6ombining your changing temperature charts with your sunrise and sunset charts will underscore how the tilt of the Earth in its orbit about the Sun affects not only the intensity of the solar radiation at a given location. Set up your lampHs bare bulb as the Sun in the middle of the room so that you are able to wal! around it to demonstrate the Earth orbiting later on. so you will need to improvise here. 2lace your person on the globe and review day and night on the spinning Earth.ial tilt in this lessonHs demonstration will provide the needed facts for the students to begin to piece together The Reasons for The Seasons. 7se your little toy <anything small will do e.ial tilt affects the changing amount of sunlight and position of the Sun in the s!y. (n ideal setup would have the !ids sitting close to each other in one area of the class $ some classes are better set up for this than others. if your class has recorded the daily changing sunrise and sunset times <see the above supplemental activities for Day and Night on the Spinning Globe= have them posted for students to reference as they discuss their e. K6an someone come up and rotate the Earth so that the person in 5urham is e. These two effects combine to create the weather we usually associate with each season. &e. but also the number of daylight hours.g.t. you can have 5urham be positioned at noontime and as! the !ids to name another place on the .L 0ave someone come up and place a small object on the globe to represent a person who is e. If you have more than one seasonHs arc drawing this is ideal because the students will begin to better understand that the SunHs path does not stay stationary all year long. (dditionally. 6onnecting the SunHs apparent path using their arc drawings to the changing amount of sunlight and then finally observing the earthHs orbit and a. )e sure to osition the !am or !ight source in the center of the c!ass and if ossi"!e have the c!ass sit in one section or corner of the c!ass to rovide simi!ar ers ective for each student1 Activity: A. These arc drawings will be helpful to have posted for students to reference as they discuss their understanding of how the EarthHs a.2n3uiry Activity: $re aration: 2ost your classHs The Sun Moves in the Sky! arc drawings from as many seasons as possible. 2lace a small object on 5urham and facing the light source. +egin with a reminder of the last lesson Day and Night on the Spinning Globe and what they learned about day and night and the EarthHs rotation.plain how you !now this.

globe and figure out if they are in light or dar!ness. See if they can tell you why they thin! this is. (s!.planations.go. #emem"er to turn /arth %est to /ast *which !ooks counterc!ockwise when you !ook down at the North o!e. round called Earth. and its motion for him is completely hori-ontal. attach another small object at the &orth 2ole and have them find out that he now sees the Sun on his hori-on. e.t as! the students. If your class has measured daily sunrise and sunset times as well as ta!en arc drawings of the sunHs path across the s!y. moving at A999 mph around e'uator. (s! them where on Earth you can ever see the Sun directly overhead. so that everything off Earth seems to be rotating. K#hat ma!es the days warmer because you will agree the days are warmer in summerEL Some students may claim that the earth is closer to the Sun in summer. It is helpful to choose city locations close to our longitude because the time -one will be similar and it will be daylight outside. To see this dramatically. K6an someone e.cept maybe at the poles where you get perpetual twilight. &e. >.is=. They will li!ely have told you already that this is not the way things are. 5iscuss what season it is now at school and to loo! for signs of what season it at each live cam location.htm .plain what ma!es night cooler than daylight hoursEL Nou are loo!ing for the obvious answer of no direct sunlight. ?. (s! the students. In our current model the answer is the E'uator. 0ave the students search the following locations on http)//www. +e sure to as! those students the follow up 'uestion. 2t is not necessary to go into the mathematics of the ang!es here+ the oint it that the farther from the e3uator you go+ the f!atter the Sun-s motion in the sky and the !ower it stays1 :. Show them how at intermediate latitudes he sees the Sun move in the s!y in a circle tilted by his latitude. K5oes all the Earth have summer at the same timeEL Some will sha!e their heads no as they remember that some parts of the world have winter when we have summer. including I am sure some referring to seasonal change. holding Earth vertically <no tilt on the a. everyone on Earth should see A8 hours of light and A8 of dar!.com/*o-one/cam8. I imagine they will include their understanding of these phenomena and their causes <the earthHs tilt and orbit around the Sun= in their e. but do not assume they all get it because one does. you may as well bring latitude into the story. #hile on this subject. KIs there a longer amount of light hours or dar! hoursEL There will be differing answers here. 8. &ow allow the students to use the web live cams from places throughout the globe. people all over Earth donHt have A8 hours of light and dar!ness everyday of the year. Nou are li!ely to get a correct answer here.: Mention our story from the end of the last activity about living on a carousel or merry.rtBB. Try to get them to admit that as your model stands now. ItHs always helpful to get world locations by as!ing the !ids where members of their families live outside of the 7S or what countries their families moved from before the 7S.

just as they could see points near the pole at all times. &ote that as Earth turns.gov. &orth (merica.pe. 2oint out how most of what they see is the &orthern 0emisphere.is points in same direction at all times.aggerate the tilt as above. In fact. Start with the &orthern hemisphere pointed towards the Sun" e. K#hat happens to the different parts of the Earth if it were tilted li!e thisEL 0ow warm could this part get as compared to the other partE 6ontinue by tilting the Earth <by about >? degrees= so the &orthern hemisphere faces them. C. 5onHt mention KhemispheresL just yet and see if the students can detect a pattern based on locations of hotter or colder loo!ing live cams. Show them that days are longer than A8 hours in the &orth. there are some points <down to latitude >?= that they can see at all times" some points <latitudes near the e'uator= they can see for part of the time" some parts of Earth they do not see <south of latitude $>?=. Is this what happensE It could be but it isnHt.cybercenter.awi. points in the &orth are visible for more than T the time and points in the South for less. winter in the South. Show them how north of the arctic circle the Sun does not set.• • • 2rince Edwards Island.bremerhaven. Southern 0emisphere http)//www. EarthHs a. If they don t suggest tilting the Earth.cl/htmlQcyber8/liveQcam/liveQcam. K0ow is it this could happenEL D.#hat happens to change the seasonsE Try tilting the Earth in another direction. Show how as you turn the Earth about a tilted a.periencing another as!. South (merica.is. %e are going to create an /arth or"it inside the c!ass1 $ick a articu!ar direction in the c!assroom *ty ica!!y towards one of the wa!!s.is relative to its orbit. even as the Earth rotates. where the /arth-s North o!e wi!! oint1 Section of or"it near that wa!! wi!! corres ond to Decem"er1 . S!ip and go to P@= @. &ow South faces the Sun. South of the (ntarctic 6ircle the Sun never rises. Make a connection to more Sun means warmer1 This is summer in the &orthern hemisphere. <If the students are unable to use the web live cams especially due to Internet regulations prohibiting any live cams on school computers thatHs fine. (ntarctic http)//www. tilt it yourself and as!. and summer in the South.de/&MQ#eb6am/ B.or this ste + you want to "e 6<= degrees away *near the o osite wa!!. if we are in winter. A9.php (t!a +ay. If it noticed that one half of the globe is e. 6hile. Some may suggest tilting the one half away or towards the light to ma!e it warmer. so this would be winter for us. Moo!ing at the site from Santiago. so it is >une1 &ow ma!e the connection to the Sun and the tilt of the EarthHs a. So. (s! the class KIs there a way to ma!e one part of the globe colder than anotherE 6an anyone move the globe around to try it outE Is it possible to ma!e one half of the world get warmer than the otherEL %f course.periencing on season and another portion of the globe is e. 6anada. &orthern 0emisphere http)//www. the day side of Earth is warmer $ the point here is to ma!e one part of the Earth warmer on average than another. shorter in the South. 6hile will provide a picture of a site that is in the opposite season. Santiago will be in summer. .ca/islandcam/ Santiago.

pdf. To verify the correct responses and descriptions for where the Earth is tilted loo! at http)//hea. 6ontinue so the students rotate for one whole year.t two years <899>. fallO &e.t seasonHs -one in the EarthHs orbit. (rctic/(ntarctic circle.harvard. people swimming at the beach on 6hristmas and in /anuary. e'uino. In fact. %ur merry.go. . as well as the tropics. .ive the students an Earth Styrofoam model one and stand them up in the position of their birthday in the EarthHs orbit around the Sun.tract a vocabulary activity from this unit) solstice. A:.#hat does change is where Earth is relative to Sun. In the end you should have all the !ids standing around the class ma!ing up parts of the EarthHs orbit and have people in every season. AA. Nes. <See the attached 5aylight 6hanges Math (ctivity for fun daylight and calendar math word problems=. tropics. places where Sun gets overhead every day in the year. e. Tell them of 6hristmas in the summer in the southern hemisphere.o A@9 degrees on orbit. summer in south. the spring e'uino. More importantly.?= is on March 89. It is helpful to ma!e an overhead reproducible of the wor!sheet and review the studentsH responses together as a class. Nou may wish to e. (t a point when most students are near completion. to get to point where it is winter in north. (s! them where else in the orbit this happens. &ow go C9 degrees around. around September 89.t season. Invite students to come up and draw in their drawing of how the Earth is tilted in each season on the overhead transparency.planations. They should find this A@9 degrees away. get the students to figure what month and season it is in the north and south part of the Earth.. review their answers and e.t. the location of the fall e'uino.Show them (rctic and (ntarctic circles. 3all. the ne. If they have already done Sun path arc drawings reinforce the data collected on the arc diagram and as! them to figure out what it will loo! li!e in another season or if they were in the Southern 0emisphere.1 A8.5istribute the %hat Season in the @r"it& wor!sheet and e. 0ave the students identify what season they are generally in. www.et them to guess what month this is. . (s an entire class have each season move to the ne. So days and nights will be about e'ual everywhere on Earth.g.edu/E6T/pdf/sunearth. )e sure the direction of a0ia! ti!t for each student-s /arth is in the correct osition as it or"its the Sun *e1g1 Northern ?emis here ti!ted towards Sun in summer months+ and away in %inter. when day and night are e'ual in length. show them how for us the Sun gets higher overhead in summer but tilts farther south in winter and farther north in southern hemisphere.o around an entire orbit once more.plain directions. 0emisphere. . show them the <spring= e'uino. as! the students if they are in summer to move into the area of the ne. summer.round ride is even more interesting.. (s! them when this happens. .

or neither is pointed towards the Sun. (t the same time. and it is summer.Seasons A. In the southern hemisphere. occurs in springG :. the weather here in the north is warm. in the southern hemisphere it is winter. days are long. 5ays are long and the weather warm. (s the Earth orbits the Sun. is the summer so!stice. and the day in the southern hemisphere shortest. 8. . our days are short and our weather cold. it is summer. %ur shortest <and their longest= day occurs at the winter so!stice around Decem"er 76. In between these. around >une 7=. #hen the northern hemisphere points away from the Sun. the southern hemisphere. there are two days a year when day and night are of e'ual length everywhere on Earth" these are the s ring e3uino0 around March 76 and the fa!! e3uino0 around Se tem"er 771 &ote that in the southern hemisphere the fall e'uino.is means that at different places along its orbit either the northern hemisphere. #hen the northern hemisphere points towards the Sun. >. the tilt of its a. The time of year when our day is longest. it is winter.

6ut out the four pictures of the Earth in the dar! s!y and glue them in place at the four points along the orbit in the first picture. In this picture we are loo!ing at the Earth and Sun from the side.?. .

6ut out the four pictures of the Earth on a white bac!ground and glue them in place at the four points along the orbit in the second picture. March 8A/88 Summer Solstice /une 89/8A #inter Solstice 5ecember 8A/88 3all E'uino.B. The green dot on the Earth is the &orth pole. Spring E'uino. 0ere we are loo!ing at the Earth and Sun from above the EarthHs orbit. September 88/8: .

+elow try your math s!ills at figuring out how much longer or shorter the amount the SunHs light is hitting the northern part or hemisphere of the Earth. the day each year with the least amount of light.rom the winter so!stice around Decem"er 77 unti! the summer so!stice around >une 77+ each day has a ro0imate!y 7 minutes more sun!ight than the day "efore1 So!ve the winter and s ring math ro"!ems "e!ow using "oth num"er sentences and word sentences1 A. 0ow many fewer minutes of sunlight will (ugust 8A have than (ugust ?E . 0ow many more minutes of sunlight will (pril ? have than March 8BE . in the middle of /une <around /une 88= to the winter solstice. .is. in the end of 5ecember <near 5ec 8A= day light gets shorter and shorter each day. the amount of the SunHs light changes everyday. 0ow many more minutes of sunlight will March 8A have than March ?E 8. the day each year with the greatest amount of daylight. 3rom the summer solstice.rom the summer so!stice around >une 77 unti! the winter so!stice around Decem"er 77+ each day has a ro0imate!y 7 minutes !ess sun!ight than the day "efore1 31 0ow many fewer minutes of sunlight will 5ecember ? have than &ovember 8DE >.Day!ight 'hanges (s the Earth orbits the Sun and spins on its a.

the Moon would be eclipsed every month when it moved into the EarthHs shadowG This activity will allow the students to physically manipulate a Moon/Earth/Sun model to create and identify all of the MoonHs phases. #hile holding an Earth globe in your hand review what they !now about how day and night is caused on Earth with the students. so that the entire Earth gets to be lit at some point of each day.tension cord Two inch Styrofoam ball for each student 2encils #or!sheet 2n3uiry Activity A. 0ow much of the half we can see is included in the half that is lit by the Sun $ and hence visible $ depends on the relative positions of the Earth. +ecause the phases are caused by the relative direction of Moon and Sun in the s!y <as seen from Earth= they are related to the time of day when the Moon can be seen in the s!y. ( full Moon always rises at sunset while crescent Moons are visible during the day. lamp without shade Earth globe E.actly one half of the surface of the round Moon. 5ar!en the classroom and use an e. Materia!s: a= b= c= d= e= f= Strong light source i. The Sun lights up half of the Earth and Moon just the same way a flashlight lights up one half of a ball. The Earth spins in the light.e. The MoonHs orbit is a little bit tilted. 1efreshing their memory about how the . (t any point in time.$hases of the Moon $ur ose: 2hases of the Moon are not caused by the EarthHs shadow. the change in relative positions gives rise to the varying phases. (s the Moon orbits Earth.tension cord to enable light to be placed in middle of room. and Moon. %therwise. we on Earth can see e. Sun. so sunlight shining around the Earth reaches the Moon when the MoonHs tilt puts it above or below the plane of the EarthHs orbit. They are due to a change in our viewing perspective as the Moon orbits around Earth and is lit by the Sun.

#hen they observe the ball fully in light as!. they must hold the moon above their heads. K#hat side of the Moon is litE The side thatHs closer to the Sun or further awayEL D. Students move the ball a little to the left of the sun loo!ing at the moon until they can see a crescent shape in light.et them to figure out if this crescent is facing the sun or away. K0ow does a chun! of roc! shine so brightly that we can see itEL Met them get to the fact that the Sun shines on the Moon. (s! them all to Kturn around until it is noon in Eyeville.plain that today weHll figure out how this wor!s. .L leaving ample space between them. their heads will play the role of the Earth. K#hat is the Moon made ofEL Ignore the cheese jo!e and get to roc!.plain that in today s e.L 6ontinue with this type of e. E. e. Stop this before the 'uestions degenerate to complete irrelevance. the other is dar!.plain that this ma!es for realistic Moons with craters=. 0and out a Styrofoam ball and pencil to each student and have them mount the ball on the pencil. ma!ing it loo! bright in the s!y.ive them a few minutes to as! 'uestions about past material. (rrange the students in a circle around the KSun. located in their right eye and populated by Eyevillians. The students should understand that the Moon is a ball of roc!. So it is on the Moon as the Sun can only ma!e one. 8. KSo how does a chun! of roc! change shapeE Summari-e by describing that the Moon does not change shape but it loo s as if it does. (s!. &ow as!. E. They hold their Moon at arm s length right in front of the sun. .EarthHs rotation causes day and night is useful both for the analogy to how the Moon shines and to understand why we see it at different times. which they hold in their hand li!e a lollypop. To accomplish this. K#hat does the Moon loo! li!eEL Summari-e the discussion by pointing out it seems to change shape. and have demonstrated an understanding of the lessons of Day and Night on the Spinning Globe. ?. which shines because Sun lights it up. . 1emind them how. when Sun shines on Earth.half shine. (s!. They can imagine a town called Eyeville.ercise. :. (s!.ercise until they are comfortable with the idea of their head as Earth.plain that each student will be given a model of the Moon to add to his or her Sun/Earth System. E. (s!. it is light <daytime= on half of Earth. K(s the moon grows fuller is it moving towards or away from the sunEL @. #hat their right eye sees will reflect what the Eyevillians can see. (s!. B. They move the Moon in a circle until they can see it fully lit. Students imagine that their heads are Earth and the light in the center of class is the Sun. and dar! on the other half. &ow start tal!ing about the Moon. Students !eep moving their moons around their heads <Earth=. >. They stop when they can see half the Moon lit. The balls will play the role of the Moon <if the Moons are poc!mar!ed from previous use.

AA. Tell them this is cool.planations. K(t what time of day will you see a 3ull Moon directly overheadE #here is the moon when it is the smallest phases or shapesE (t what time of day could you see a U+ananaH or crescent MoonEL Tal! about how the SunHs light complicates seeing certain phases of the moon. Feep this going for a few minutes and move around to see if they really did get it. A8. weHll tal! about it ne. (s!.E. 7se the directions below. 0ave an overhead transparency of the wor!shop to use with the whole class. 0ave students do this for a few minutes for themselves. but for now show them how holding Moon a bit higher to !eep it out of shadow of their heads will eliminate the problem.t wee!. #hen finished the wor!sheet as!. Then e. The idea is that they should be able to see the shape of the Moon and move themselves until they see the shape you as!ed for. %nce most of the class is completed review their answers and e. Khalf <or 'uarter $ whatever you have called it to them= moonL.K5escribe where the Moon is located in the Sun/Earth/Moon systemEL Is it between the Earth and the Sun or on the opposite side of Earth from the SunEL C. It is called K&ewL because the ancients thought it was newly born each time. K(s it moves toward the Sun is it getting fuller or thinnerEL A9. how could this be possibleE . Students continue to move the moons until they are half full again. #hy notE This is the phase we call the K&ew MoonL. and they may as! what happened. etc. inadvertently. K0ow long from 3ull Moon to new MoonE 0ow long is one lunar cycleE Is it possible to have two full moons ever in one monthE If so. then call out commands and see if they can all do Kfull moonL.plain that when the moon passes the sun it usually is just above or below it and we cannot see it.Someone will ma!e an eclipse.plain the Moon Phases #or!sheet and complete Moon 5ay A and 5ay D together as a whole class.1epeat this activity several times ma!ing sure that the light source is appropriate so that the phases can be clearly seen.0ave them move their moons so that they become crescent slivers. (s!. Kbanana moonL. A:. Nou may want to show them how smaller phases happen when Moon is near Sun in the s!y. while doing this.

so people loo!ing up at the Moon from Earth will see a different shape depending on where the Moon is. ThatHs the part of the Moon that is colored in yellow and in blue. The line touches the Earth where someone standing on the Earth will see the Moon directly overhead. positions will the Moon be visible in daytimeE QQQQQQQQQQ be visible at nightE QQQQQQQQQQQ be visible at dawn or dus!E QQQQQQQQQQ B. 3or each Moon in the picture. 3or which of the si.W :. #hich day corresponds to the new MoonE QQQ The full MoonE QQQQ #hich to the wa. ?. #rite the phase you thin! the Moon will be under each Moon. 8. Sunlight hits one side of the Earth.ing Moon <the illuminated area getting bigger=E QQQQQQ #hich to the waning Moon <the illuminated area getting smaller=E QQQQQ . >. #hen we loo! at the Moon from Earth. #hen we loo! in the s!y. ma!ing it day there. 5raw a line from the center of the Moon on day A to the center of the Earth. half of the Moon that can be seen from the Earth. color the half of the Moon that faces the Sun yellow. 3or each Moon in the picture. This has a different shape for each of the Moons in the picture.Moon $hases New/%a0ing/.u!!/%aning A. we can only see the glowing part of the side of the Moon that is facing us. 6olor the half of the Earth where it is day yellow. Sunlight also hits one side of the Moon. VThis half of the Moon will glow in the s!y because much of the sunlight hitting it is reflected bac! into space. color in blue the one. we can only see the side of the Moon that is facing us.


3ill in with a pencil or crayon the area of the Moon that remains dar!. %utline the area of the Moon that is bright from your viewpoint on the &arth. Day 6 Day 9 Day 79 Day < Day 77 Day 66 Day 69 Day 6B . or else cut and glue the correct picture of the Moon in each position as it would loo! from Earth.Ciew of the Moon from the /arth Nou are now on the Earth loo!ing at each of the Moons shown in the previous diagram.

Day 69 .

egin three days after full !oon. &ow that the students have seen a simulation of the moon in orbit about the Earth. Measure and draw the moon s shape and position in relation to the Sun. $ook for the !oon in the #estern sky. they should be ready to ma!e actual observations and as! logical 'uestions.imately C . B from standard role" mar!ers" diagram of moon phases" compass. 3orm a fist with other hand and point the wide part to the sun. A. A8= for each student or group" pencils" folder such as file folder to store recordings in" Marge chart : . the Moon became an essential tool for survival. Move the fist toward the moon counting each fist placed. Students should practice measuring techni'ues in classroom. %bservers of the s!y noticed that the Moon s movements were not random and fit a pattern. 8. %n the recording sheet. or help those living in flood plains of large rivers to be prepared for the rainy season. This pattern would be the foundations of the first calendars <see 6hapter :=. AAR for each student or small group" heavy cardboard <appro. students should place an S in the middle of the .Additiona! Activity: @"serving the Moon-s $hases and Motion Ta!en from the (ctivity %bserving the MoonHs Motion found at htt ://heaDwww1harvard1edu//'T/theA"ook/'ha E/'ha terE1htm!Fotm 3or many cultures. 3ind a place to stand facing South. and location. 0old one hand bloc!ing an imaginary sun to protect eyes. height in the s!y. Guestions to ask: 0ow does the moon change from day to dayE Is it possible to see the moon in the daylight hoursE Is there any pattern to the various shapes of the moonE 0ow often does a full moon occurE 0ow could we observe and record the shape and placement of the moon in the s!yE #hen during school hours could we begin this study based on information given in the introductionE Materia!s: Sheets of paper @ A/8R . Morning @"servations Never look directly at the sun. and would aide early farmers in predicting planting and harvesting times. 2ractice several times. efore beginning this activity" check on the position of the !oon and #hether it is obstructed. The moon s regimented pattern can be seen over days and over months in its shape. Stand with arms raised above heads.

>. It will appear as a thin crescent. The moon is no longer visible during the morning ten days after the full moon. 2lace another large sheet of paper on wall and draw observations as in daytime observations showing number of fists away from moon to sun. #rite this date and the number of first measurements under moon.top of the paper. 2lace a large chart on the wall. (s! them to predict where the moon will be after a few days and also to predict how far from the sun it will be in fists. Students should thin! about and discuss why the moon is no longer visible during the day. and the date of observation. ?. :. 5raw or have students draw hori-on objects and label directions. /vening @"servations A. as! students if the curved part of the moon is facing toward or away from the sun. 1ecord all other observations in fists and shapes. They record the setting sun and then draw the moon every other clear day at sunset with the date and fist measurement from setting sun to moon and the fist measurement from hori-on. students watch at sunset to see when the moon first appears near the setting sun. Discussion: 5iscuss observations and the moon s shapes at different times. the observations may be summari-ed on a large sheet of paper. (s! the students to use their observation sheets to describe the shape of the moon on that day. number of fists from hori-on to moon. Two or three days after the new moon. (fter each observation. 5iscuss the changes in shape and distance from sun after observations. 5raw the sun and moon as they loo!ed on the day of observation. %bserve and record daytime moon and sun every other day <does not need to be at the same time= labeling each drawing with the date of the observation and the distance between the moon and sun measured in fists. #hat patterns have they observedE 6an we predict if this pattern will be recurringE #hat will help us to decide thatE #hat use could we ma!e of this recorded informationE 0ow were these observations of the moon helpful in earlier timesE Might the phases of the moon contribute to the understanding and ordering of the ancient worldE . :. E on the left hand upper corner. # on the right hand corner and than draw the hori-on leaving a large space for the s!y. 8. They do this on clear days until the full moon which is about two wee!s after the new moon and add their recordings to their folders. Start with the first observer. (fter about five measurements. 0ave them share their fist measurements and use the average of these. They should thin! about and predict when and where it will be visible again.

%f course. or ?> years.?: X B?@:. two solar eclipses separated by this interval will not be visible from the same place on Earth because of the . +ecause the full Moon is visible from one. allowed them to predict eclipses. lines up along the Earth.: day" a repeat eclipse in <almost= the same location will happen after three saros intervals. The direction of the tilt of MoonHs orbit is itself changing <precessing=.alignment leads to a Solar and a lunar eclipse during the same month or eclipse season. It turns out that the line of nodes.t viewable lunar eclipse in the &orth (merica is on @cto"er 7<+ 7==81 . The EarthHs shadow plays no role in the MoonHs phases butO our shadow does dar!en the Moon during a lunar eclipse. There isnHt an eclipse every month because the MoonHs orbit is titled and that causes the Moon to pass above or below the earthHs shadow. the line common to the plane of the MoonHs orbit and to the ecliptic. :> days. an eclipse will be followed by another after this interval <the saros' A@ years.%here Did the Moon Go& /c!i ses Activity $ur ose: The phases of the Moon occur because of changes in how much of the MoonHs surface we see lit up.: days. The MoonHs deep orange color comes about as the earthHs atmosphere bends the red.Sun line once every :>B. and how the Moon s shadow can prevent light from reaching some of the surface of the Earth. Teacher "ackground: The Earth circles the Sun once a year in an ecliptic plane that contains the Earth. +ecause AC:>B. (n eclipse occurs when this time coincides with either a full <lunar= or a new <Solar= Moon.B X 88:8C.: times a year and Solar eclipses about twice.orange part of the sunlight into the shadow <similar bending happens at sunrise and sunset when the s!y appears red=.orange.: months=. %ur Moon that circles Earth appro. EarthHs shadow and the Sun. AA. discovered by the ancients.half of Earth <the night side=. This interval. %ften the same near. (lignment does not need to be perfect. Each month as the Moon is on the side of the Earth away from the Sun it passes close to an eclipse. 5uring the %here Did the Moon Go activity the students will find out why and how the EarthHs shadow bloc!s all or some of the SunHs light from hitting the Moon.imately once a month orbits the Earth titled ? from the plane of the ecliptic. The ne. everyone on the night side can see all or part of the lunar eclipse when it happens. 5uring a total eclipse the Moon loo!s reddish.B days. and on average lunar eclipses occur 8.

hours before the Sun so are best viewed in the morning and set around noon. with the Sun in the center. &ow we get to eclipses. and set around midnight. Start by reminding them of the lesson learned last wee!) the Moon changes shape in the s!y because the angle at which the Sun illuminates it. :. wa. . 0ave them imagine their head as Earth <this is im ortant for the ne0t thing::= and have people living in Eyeville loo! up at the Moon at whatever phase they are ma!ing. 3ull moons rise at sunset and are up all night. #e will set up the class much the same way we did last time. 8. 2oint out how the shape correlates with the MoonHs position relative to the Sun.plain how eclipses happen. &ew moons rise and set with the Sun. months because of the MoonHs tilted orbit but because the MoonHs shadow is so small only a small part of the EarthHs surface will see the Moon totally eclipse the Sun. The coincidence that ma!es this possible is that the Moon is also appro. and discuss what has happened to the Moon $ it has been swallowed in the EarthHs shadow <remind them that your head is Earth here=. if the Moon where to pass directly between the Earth and the Sun. This is what we call a !unar ec!i se.ing half moons rise and set about B hours after the Sun so are best viewed in the afternoon. (nd this too happens about once every si. the SunHs light would be bloc!ed creating a solar eclipse. and to e. Show them this can happen only at full moon. Show them other phases and as! how Earth can shadow Moon <it canHt=. &ow show them how you can ma!e a full Moon disappear. 5ue to this coincidence. A. . are highest in the s!y at sunset. Ma!e sure they can see your shadow on the wall. 'an the /yevi!!ians see the Sun& #hat time is it in EyevilleE <since they are turning to follow the KMoonL this is always at its highest point in the s!y for the Eyevillians= >.( strange coincidence allows the Sun and the Moon to appear to be the same si-e even thought the sun is >99 times larger than the Moon. Set yourself up with a KMoonL in front of a wall. changes as the Moon orbits Earth. relative to the direction from which we view it. The ne0t viewa"!e so!ar ec!i se in NorthDeastern North America wi!! "e on August 6+ 7==<1 2n3uiry Activity: The idea in this activity is to reinforce the previous discussion of lunar phases. %thers see a partial solar eclipse that using the right technology will loo! li!e a bite was ta!en out of the Sun.imately >99 times closer to us than the Sun. ( solar eclipse happens when the Moon is on the same side as the Sun $ the &ew Moon phase.et them up in a circle around the KSunL and lead them through ma!ing phases one more time. Try to get them to figure out how the phases are related to the times at which we can see the Moon. #aning 'uarter moons rise si.

et their attention again <as! them to put their hand with the KMoonL straight down so the thing is out of the way and not distracting them $ and they canHt play with it=. E. partner them up and have one ma!e an eclipse while the other loo!s at them to see the dar! spot on their face. . @.?. B. Show them how if you do it slowly <and in real time it does happen slowly $ ta!es about an hour= you can see the Moon disappear one bit at a time. This wor!s best if you hold moon closer to you. &ow have them ma!e lunar eclipses. Turn your head a bit to mimic Earth. Show how people elsewhere can still see Sun <rest of your face is not dar!=. 2ost the students drawings and descriptive paragraphs around the room for students to observe when the activity if finished.plain to students the %here Did the Moon Go& and %here Did the Sun Go& #or!sheet. Show them how you ma!e a solar eclipse by getting the Moon in front of your face. show how eclipse moves along Earth. 0ave them ma!e Solar eclipses. Ma!e sure they understand that people there will see their day dar!en $ so first that it is day and second that Sun is hidden. Ma!e them loo! at your face as you do this and notice the dar! circle where the Sun is hidden. D. and close one eye $ so you are loo!ing from the point of totality. .

Earth.%here Did the Moon Go& Each month as the Moon is on the side of the Earth away from the Sun it passes close to an eclipse. There is an ec!i se a"out every si0 months causing the Moon to "e artia!!y or com !ete!y ec!i sed "y the /arth1 +elow draw the Sun. +elow describe what is happening in your picture above and how a lunar eclipse happens. There isnHt an eclipse every month because the MoonHs orbit is titled and that causes the Moon to pass above or below the earthHs shadow. . the EarthHs shadow and Moon so that the Moon is being eclipsed by the EarthHs shadow.

+ut because the MoonHs shadow is so small only a small part of the EarthHs surface will see the Moon totally eclipse the Sun. (nd this too happens about once every si. months because of the MoonHs tilted orbit. and the MoonHs shadow so that the Sun is being eclipsed by the MoonHs shadow. Earth. Moon. +elow describe what is happening in your picture above and how a solar eclipse happens.%here Did the Sun Go& ( solar eclipse happens when the Moon is on the same side as the Sun $ the &ew Moon phase. . %thers see a partial solar eclipse that using the right technology will loo! li!e a bite was ta!en out of the Sun. The ne0t viewa"!e so!ar ec!i se in NorthDeastern North America wi!! "e on August 6+ 7==<1 +elow draw the Sun.

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