Beacon Lesson Plan Library

Phase In, Phase Out, the Magnificent Moon

Cathy Burgess
Bay District Schools

Description

Students know very little about the moon, so investigate what's in the night sky and find out why the moon looks different every 28 days.

Objectives

The student uses simple reference material to obtain information (for example, table of contents, fiction and nonfiction books, picture dictionaries, audio visual software).

The student uses complete sentences in writing.

The student writes simple informational texts (for example, two-step instructions in sequence, directions, reports).

The student knows appropriate tools (clocks and calendar) for measuring time (including days, weeks, months).

The student knows that the amount of light reflected by the Moon is a little different every day but the Moon appears the same again about every 28 days.

The student knows and differentiates objects seen in the day and night sky (for example, clouds, Sun, stars, Moon, planets).

Materials

Day 6
-Suggested book, [The Moon Seems to Change], Emberley, HarperTrophy, 1987
-Computer with Internet access
-T-chart of what is in the night sky (from day 2)
-Song, “Tuning Up for Outer Space” (from day 1
-Index cards (enough for each student plus two for the word wall words)
-Clock
-Calendar
-Flashlight
-Ball (big one like basketball or volleyball)
-Triangle sentence writing chart (from day 2)
-Triangle writing sheet (from day 2: one copy for each student)
-Dictionary
-M encyclopedia
-Chart paper
-Nursery rhyme, “Hey Diddle, Diddle”
-Moon phase cards (see associated file)

Day 7
-Nursery rhyme chart of, “Hey Diddle, Diddle”
-Jellyroll pan
-Sand (enough to fill a jellyroll pan)
-Several rocks
-Large TV with Internet hook up (usually available in your media center)
-Encyclopedia or other books with pictures of the moon (use these if large TV and Internet are not available)
-Suggested book, [Papa, Please Get the Moon for Me] by Carle, Little Simon, 1999
-Lunar calendar for current month you are teaching this unit (download off Internet; see Weblinks; enough for each student and the teacher)
-Circle pattern (several for students to trace; see associated file)
-White construction paper 9x11 (one for each student)
-Yellow crayon (one for each student)
-Blue tempera paint
-Paintbrush (1 medium size)
-Scissors
-Science journal
-Moon phase cards from day 6
-Moon report checklist

Preparations

Day 6
1. Have the book, [The Moon Seems to Change], out and ready to read.

2. Gather an encyclopedia, dictionary and other nonfiction books you are using in this unit for the Six Blocks.

3. Write the nursery rhyme, “Hey Diddle, Diddle,” on chart paper.

4. Gather clock, calendar, flashlight, and ball.

5. Have the triangle-writing chart accessible.

6. Duplicate triangle-writing sheet. (Enough for each student)

7. Gather index cards for each student.

8.(Optional) Provide a computer with Internet access, in case students need to view the phases of the moon.

9. Download and print a copy of the moon phases. Cut them out so they are cards. Laminate for durability and future use.

Day 7
1. Have the book [Papa, Please Get the Moon for Me] ready to read.

2. Have the nursery rhyme chart, “Hey Diddle, Diddle,” available.

3. Gather jellyroll pan, sand, and rocks for crater activity.

4. Have large TV with Internet access out and ready to use. (Optional)

5. Have encyclopedia or other books with pictures of the moon ready to show if you are not using the Internet sites.

6. Have moon cards from day 6 available for review.

7. Download circle pattern from associated file and make several copies for students to use for tracing.

8. Gather supplies for moon art activity: white construction paper, blue paint, paintbrush, yellow crayon, and scissors.

9. Take the blue tempera paint and water it down to a wash consistency.

10. Make a sample of the moon art activity ahead of time to show the children. (You can test your blue wash here.)

Procedures

Day 6 of Eye on the Sky unit

*At this time, students should have been participating in the Night Watcher’s Club and observing the moon for 3 weeks. If for some reason a student has not been able to observe the moon nightly, he/she can see what the moon looks likes every day on the Internet at school. It is located at the following Website: http://www.lunaroutreach.org/. However, this should not replace students actually observing the night sky.

Author’s chair- A special seat in the classroom that writers sit in to share their writing.

1. Call students to circle time. Ask students to recall what is found in the day sky. Sing the song, “Tuning Up for Outer Space,” from day one as a review. Ask: When you have the sun followed by the moon what do you have? Yes, day and night! How much time makes up day and night? (24 hours) What tool would you use to measure 24 hours? (A clock) What tool would you use to measure how long you have been observing the moon? You have been doing that for 3 weeks or 15 days. (Calendar)

2. Show the clock and calendar. Review all concepts from the previous day. Suggest to students that these two words be put on the word wall. Pick a student to do this.

3. Focus on what is found in the night sky by looking at the night sky t-chart from day 2. Talk about the moon, stars, planets, and constellations. Ask students what part of the night sky they notice first when they look up at the sky? (Hopefully they will say the moon, but if not steer them in that direction.) Tell students our moon is the brightest and biggest light in our night sky. It outshines all the stars and planets.

4. Hand out index cards and pencils. Ask students to draw a picture of the moon on an index card. Give students several minutes to do this. Have them place the cards on the chalkboard tray (or in some other place where everyone can look at the pictures). Discuss how they are alike and different. If students mainly drew a full moon, ask if there are other shapes of the moon not represented.

5. Introduce and read [The Moon Seems to Change]. Talk about when the moon changes shape that is called phases of the moon. Talk about how the moon looks like a big O. That is the full moon. Show that card. On other nights the moon does not look so big. It looks like a fat D. That is a half moon. Show that card. Some nights the moon looks like a C. You see just a little of it. That is a crescent moon. Show that card. And some nights you can’t see the moon at all. That is called the new moon. These are the phases of the moon. But, does the moon really change shape? (No)

6. Talk about how the moon does not change shape. It is always shaped like a big ball. It just looks like it is changing shape. The moon does not have light of it’s own. You see the moon because of light that comes from the sun. The sun not only shines on Earth where you are. It shines on the moon, too, and makes it take different shapes.

7. Demonstrate this concept by doing the moon activity with the students. Say: I am going to show you how the sun’s light shines on the moon using a flashlight and a ball. Look for the different phases of the moon we just talked about. We need a person to hold the flashlight to pretend to be the sun. The sun will stand still and hold the flashlight. We need another person to pretend to be the Earth. The Earth needs to hold the moon (ball) up over its head with two hands. The Earth needs its back to the sun.

* Shine the flashlight on the ball so that you can see the whole side of it. The ball looks like a big O in the light. That is the full moon.

* Now the Earth (still holding the moon up in the air) needs to make a quarter turn to the left. The left side of the Earth’s face is facing the sun. Shine the light on the moon. Now you see less of the moon, about half. That is a half moon.

* The Earth (still holding the moon up in the air) needs to make another left quarter turn again. The Earth and the sun should be facing each other. Now the light shines on the side of the ball you can’t see. You can hardly see the moon at all. This is the crescent moon.

* Keep turning left until you are standing with your back to your friend, the sun. You are back to where you began. Again, the part of the ball you can see looks like a big O in the light. Is the ball changing shape? No. What changes as you turn is how much of the ball you see in the light. This is how the moon moves around the earth. It takes about 28 days to do this. That is close to 30 days or one month. It takes about a month for this to really take place. Show the calendar and count 28 days. Ask: How many more days to complete a month? The phases of the moon clearly are seen on a calendar. It takes about 30 days or one month to see all the phases of the moon.

* The sun is always shining, like the flashlight. The earth and the moon keep turning like you and the ball. The moon seems to change because of how much of the moon you can see in the sun’s light, but it doesn’t really. It’s the amount of light reflecting on the moon is different every 28 days. Repeat the activity to further develop a better understanding. This time use different volunteers for the earth and sun.

8. Ask: Who has seen these changes in the moon when you observe the night sky? Have students tell you what they have seen. Tell the moon goes through even more shapes and sizes as the month goes by, but that we are concentrating on few that are the most noticeable.

9. Tell students: This book, [Moon Seems To Change], gives information. It is not a story. It is like the dictionary or encyclopedia (hold those up). You can use books like these to do the reports we have been practicing. Model how to find information and writing sentences into a simple report.

10. Now practice writing complete sentences about the phases of the moon together as a group. Review what makes good sentences:

* A sentence makes sense.

* Good sentences have nouns that name a person, place, or thing. They are “the who or what” of the sentence.

* Good sentences have verbs. Verbs are the action and they finish the thought.

* Good sentences have adjectives. Adjectives describe the noun. Adjectives give color, shape, and size.

* Add more words like a, an, the

* Be sure to capitalize and punctuate.

Using the triangle-writing chart, write light at the top of the triangle. Tell students this is the noun. Then ask students to give you the following: (This is just an example; use any words you wish.)

LIGHT
A verb that finishes the thought: reflects
An adjective describes the noun: bright light reflects
Add more words like a, an and the: the bright sunlight reflects on the moon
Add punctuation and capitalization: The bright sunlight reflects on the moon.

11. Have students practice writing complete sentences on their own about the moon. Hand out the triangle-writing sheet. Tell students to practice writing with the noun, moon. Circulate and observe students while they write their sentences. Give feedback and help individuals who are struggling. Collect for formative assessment.

12. End the lesson by asking who remembers the nursery rhyme, “Hey, Diddle, Diddle?" Read and recite it with the children. Ask: What phase was the moon do you think the cow jumped over? Then review the lesson by asking:

* What makes the moon look like it is shining?

* Does the moon change shape?

* Explain what is actually happening.

* How long does it take to see all the phases of the moon?

* What would be a good tool to use to measure the phases of the moon?

Formatively assess students' oral answers listening for statements like:

* Light from the sun shines on the moon and makes the moon appear to shine.

* No, the moon does not change shape.

* The sun is always shining like the flashlight. The earth and moon keep turning. The moon’s shape seems to change because of how much of the moon you can see in the sun’s light.

* It takes about 28 days or almost a month.

* A calendar.

Day 7
*Have the moon phase up on the computer from the Website: http://www.lunaroutreach.org/ when the children enter the room for those who might have missed it the night before.

*Remind students about the Night Watcher's club. Discuss their discoveries thus far.

Author’s chair- a special seat in the classroom that writers sit in to share their writing.

1. Call students to circle time. Review what is found in the day/night sky. Then, read and recite together “Hey Diddle, Diddle.” Ask students to tell you when they see the moon, in the day or night sky. Review how the moon is a sphere like a ball, but that it seems to change shape every night. Use the moon phase cards. Sometimes you might see it as a round ball in the sky like an O. That is a full moon. Sometimes you may see it as a half circle like a D or a half moon, or slivers like a C, that is called a crescent. And sometimes when there is a new moon and there is nothing at all. Remind students of the moon activity from day 6. If you shine a light on a round object, such as a ball, half of the ball will be in the light and half will be in shadow. The same thing happens when the Sun shines on the moon.

2. Tell students the moon is a round rocky world. It has tall mountains, deep craters, and valleys. Craters are similar to a hole in the ground. The moon’s craters were formed a billion years ago when meteors pounded its surface. To help students understand craters on the moon, do the following crater activity:

*Show them the jellyroll pan filled with sand. Let students make craters by dropping rocks in the sand. Explain that the surface of the moon is covered with prints of objects such as rocks and meteors that have hit it.

3. (Optional) This is a good time to use the Internet to show students actual pictures of the moon. If the Internet and TV are not available, show pictures from encyclopedias or other books. Talk about the moon’s surface. When you look at it, you can see light and dark patches. Some people say that the patches look like a human face. You may have heard of the Man in the Moon. But there are no men on the moon, because there is no air. Without air we can't breathe.

4. Introduce and read, [Papa, Please Get the Moon for Me]. Ask: What happened to the moon? Yes, it was large, got smaller, and then large again. When that happens, what is it called? (Phases of the moon) What different shapes of the moon that we learned about yesterday are in this story?

*What is on the cover? A full moon.

*Do you see a crescent moon?

*What about a half moon?

*Did the story mention a new moon?

5. Now hold up a copy of a lunar calendar.
*Ask: what do you see? (A calendar that shows phases of the moon.)

*What is it used for? (A calendar is a tool for measuring time.)

*Review that a calendar measures days, weeks (which are seven days), and months, which are made up of 30 or 31 days.

*Ask: how many days does it take for the moon to appear the same again? (28 or 29 days which is almost a month.)

*Put your finger on the first day of the month. Look carefully at the phase of the moon and count 28/29 days. The phase of the moon on the 28th /29th day should be exactly the same. Point that out to the students. Mention the phases of the moon as you go along. (Some research shows the moon changes every 29 days, but the standard says 28 days. You may have to count one more day for it to be exactly the same. That happened to me with the June 2002 calendar I downloaded. You may have to tell the students this.)

6. Review these facts about the moon and calendar. Have the students show thumbs up if the statement is correct or thumbs down if it is wrong.

*The amount of light reflected on the moon makes it look like it is changing shape.

*The changes in the moon take about 28/29 days.

*28 or 29 days equals a week.

*A clock is used to measure days, weeks, months, and years.

7. Tell students you want them to think of their favorite phase of the moon to make for an art activity. Show them one that the teacher made for an example. Have them return to their desks and hand out circle patterns, white construction paper, and yellow crayons. They are to trace the circle onto the construction paper with a yellow crayon. Decide which is their favorite phase of the moon and color in that part by pressing hard on the yellow crayon. When students have that part done, they are to go to the teacher and paint the blue wash over the moon shape. (For the sake of time and less mess, have one station for the blue paint that is monitored by the teacher.) After it is dry, cut out the moons and hang somewhere in the classroom.

8. While the moons are drying, have students make a report in their journals about the phases of the moon. Tell them up front you are looking for how many days it takes for the moon to appear the same in the sky, and what makes the moon look like it is changing shape. Hold up several informational books and tell them they can be used in reports. They contain factual or true information. Hold up [Papa, Please Get the Moon for Me], and ask if it is a storybook or an information book with facts. Could it be used in a report? Remind students of what reports must have. Give them a copy of the moon report checklist.

*A title

*About 4 sentences

*Facts or true statements

*Non-fiction reference materials (books, encyclopedia, etc…)

9. Encourage them to write complete sentences that make sense.

10. Have several students share journal reports in the author’s chair. Pick out some complete sentences and showcase what an excellent job students are doing writing complete sentences. Give a cheer for those who told how many days it takes for the moon to appear the same in the sky. Do this by writing them on the board. Have students help you find the noun, verb, and adjectives. Check for capitalization and punctuation and ask if they make sense.



Assessments

Day 6
Formatively assess that students know and differentiate objects seen in the day and night sky in procedure #1 and 3. Listen for:
Day Sky: birds, planes, rainbows, sun, clouds
Night Sky: stars, moon, constellations, planets

Formatively assess that students know that the amount of light reflected by the moon is a little different every day, but the moon appears the same again about every 28 days in procedure #11. Listen for statements like:

* Light from the sun shines on the moon and makes the moon appear to shine.

* No, the moon does not change shape.

* The sun is always shining like the flashlight. The earth and moon keep turning. The moon’s shape seems to change because of how much of the moon you can see in the sun’s light.

* It takes about 28 days or almost a month.

* A calendar.


Formatively assess that students know appropriate tools (clocks and calendar) for measuring time in procedures #1 and 2. Clocks measure days in hours and minutes. Calendars measure days, weeks, months, and years.

Formatively assess that students use complete sentences in writing by observing the sentences they write in procedure #10. Check for complete sentences that make sense with a noun, verb, adjective and they are capitalized and punctuated.

Day 7
Formatively assess that students know that the amount of light reflected by the moon is a little different every day, but the moon appears the same again about every 28 days in procedure #8. Look for:

* How many days it takes for the moon to appear the same in the sky.

* What makes the moon look like it is changing shape.

* The student knows appropriate tools (clocks and calendar) for measuring time in procedures #5 & 6.

* The changes in the moon take about 28/29 days. (Thumbs up)

* 28 or 29 days almost equal a week. (Thumbs down) Restate: 28 days almost equal a month

* A clock is used to measure days, weeks, months, and years. (Thumbs down) Restate:
A calendar is used to measure days, weeks, months, and years.

Formatively assess that students use complete sentences by observing the sentences they write in their journals during procedure #9. Check for: nouns, verbs, adjectives, capitalization and punctuation.

Formatively assess the moon report with the checklist. Look for students using reference material.

Extensions

1. Invite an astronomer to come talk to your class or someone who uses a telescope to watch the night sky.

2. Writing center- have the children illustrate the cow jumping over the different phases of the moon on the chart.

3. The Beacon Unit Plan associated with this lesson can be viewed by clicking on the link located at the top of this page. (Or by using the URL http://www.beaconlearningcenter.com/search/details.asp?item=2983. Once you select the unit’s link, scroll to the bottom of the unit plan page to find the section, Attached Files. This section contains links to the Unit Plan Overview, Diagnostic and Summative Assessments, and other associated files (if any).

Web Links

Download a copy of the rhyme/
Hey Diddle, Diddle

Look at the lunar calenday.
Lunar Calendar

Look at the actual phase of the moon.
Moon Phase

Attached Files

Moon file     File Extension: pdf

Return to the Beacon Lesson Plan Library.