Monday, June 27, 2011

science week: SUN and MOON

wednesday we learned about the SUN and MOON. first we learned that the sun is the center of the solar system and that the earth and all the planets rotate around it. a neat way to show this happening is by watching shadows move.

we took a stick, a rock and piece of string.
we tied the string around the rock and the other end of the string around the stick.
we found a soft spot in the ground and stuck our sticks down into the earth so it would stand on its own.
then we looked for where the stick was casting a shadow.
you used your string and rock to follow the shadow line.
we then placed a little marker where the shadow was.
an hour later we check again, and what do you know.... the shadow moved!
we we moved our sting line and placed another marker.
(this is pretty much the same idea as a sun dial, so on our markers we wrote the time of day.)

these photos of our yard are so sad, but that was where it was easiest to put our sticks into the ground.

it was really fun the next day we came out and checked our shadows and could tell what time it was by where the shadows were in comparison to our markers. this was a great way to show the kids that the earth is always moving.

next we learned about the MOON. i had a really fun book we read and we learned that the moon rotates around the earth just like the earth does the sun. the way we can see that this is true is by the phases of the moon and how each night you see a little more or little less of the moon. we went into a dark room with a ball and flashlight to test this out for ourselves :)

one person held the flashlight, they were the sun.
one person held a ball (like a basketball or soccer ball) over their head, the person holding the ball was earth and the ball was the moon.

the "earth" starts with its back to the "sun" and you can see that the whole ball is lit up, like a full moon. then the person slowly turned to the left until he was sideways with the "sun". then you could only see one half of the moon. the "earth" kept rotating until they were facing the "sun" then they couldnt see any of the moon. it was like a new moon.... and so on.

does that make sense? im tired and feeling like that was really wordy and not very clear. we did it a couple of times and it really started clicking with the kids.

we also learned fun facts about the moon and sun and wrote them down on flash cards as well.

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