Vernier Science Education - June  2024


Forums / Elementary Science / Phases of the Moon

Elementary Science

Phases of the Moon

Author Post
Jessica Williams Jessica Williams 1125 Points

What all some ways that I can teach 4th graders the phases of the moon without getting them overwhelm and confused?

Karen Reyes Karen Reyes 875 Points

Hello! I believe a great activity to have the students learn about the phases of the moon is through observations. Assign the students homework to go home and draw how the moon looks like that night. You can let them do this multiple nights so they can later on view the difference. This can be an introduction to the lesson before teaching the actual content. 

Amanda Firenza Amanda Firenza 735 Points

The moon phases can be confusing for students to grasp sometimes. I think a good way to introduce the phases of the moon would be to have students either draw the moon every night in the science journals for about two weeks or they have apps that allow you to track the phases of the moon as well. With the app you can put in a specific date and an image of the moon will appear. I think this would engage the students in learning the phases of the moon before they actually start learning. 

Eric Roth Eric Roth 3385 Points

I hang an inflatable sun and earth from my classroom ceiling.  I also hang a moon (I use a large computer mouse ball but you should be able to find something to model t he moon) at the location it would be in space relative to the earth and sun. I move the moon regularly to show the daily or weekly position of the moon. We discuss angles and figure out how many degrees the moon travels each day. I have a chair that rotates and the earth hangs above that chair. I have a student sit in the chair and rotate him or her slowly and ask when the moon (and the sun) would rise, be overhead, and set. Some students think that the moon comes out only at night. Also, w e turn the lights out and I shine at flashlight on the moon from the Suns angle. 

Laura Rodriguez Laura Rodriguez 2850 Points

I know this might be a little to simple but when you involve food some how students really like it and really learn. I don't know if you have already seen and maybe you are looking for something else but the Oreo cookie activity always works. By using the icing as the moon you can have the students take away the amount that is needed to create each phase of the moon and then they can eat their cookies :) hope that helped in some way..

Hannah Endicott Hannah Endicott 565 Points

Hello, I think that observations is a good way to start. I would also suggest incorporating a read aloud as well, I would even have a read aloud that might talk about how werewolves turn when there is a full moon. Then I would lead up to real life things that the moon has an influence on, such as the tide, etc. 

Kayla Luna Kayla Luna 635 Points

Observation is definitely a great way to start and i also suggest having the students observe the moon before you actually teach the content. Also, it would help to have the students create a foldable with the different phases of the moon that they can put in their science journals or keep for future reference. I'd also incorporate a brain pop video to help them see how the moon orbits around the Earth and why the moon goes through phases. 

Krystal Andreu Krystal Andreu 2285 Points

You can teach the phases of the moon through direct observation or videos online. Time lapse videos are always very interesting to students. There is also a wall lamp you can buy which allows you to click through the phases of the moon and the lamp (which is formed to look like the moon itself) lights up and dims through the phases. Another method which would be interesting for the students would be taking a field trip to the planetarium where they do presentations about the solar system.  

Natalie Machado Natalie 2130 Points

Emily Puttock Emily Puttock 125 Points

I am always wonder, do you feel phases of the moon on yourself? Is your mood or health status  changed? I understand it from the science maybe sounds not very confydently to be true, but many people says about that every day. Every time I hear about headache because of the moon, or bad mood, or depression, or something else. How to explain this or how to tell people that most of all everything depends on the human, but not on the moon or cloud, or rain or something else?

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