The Earth and the Moon Emily Atkinson Grade: 3 Objective: Students will understand that the shape of Earth and the moon are spherical and that Earth rotates on its axis to produce the appearance of the sun and moon moving through the sky. Describe the appearance of Earth and the moon. Describe the movement of Earth and the moon and the apparent movement of other bodies through the sky. http://www.flashearth.com/ Here is a view of the Earth from space! Before clicking on the next link, list some things you already know about Earth: http://www.frontiernet.net/~kidpower/earth.html A. Here are some facts about Earth. Maybe there are some things you didn’t even know about! 1. How many days does it take the Earth to make one COMPLETE orbit around the sun? 2. How much of Earth is covered by water?
3. How many satellites does Earth have? What is it called? http://www.onr.navy.mil/focus/spacesciences/observingsky/motion1.htm Motion of the Earth Click play to watch the motion of the Earth http://www.windows2universe.org/the_universe/uts/earth2.html B. Earth’s rotation 1. What is the Earth rotating on? 2. Is Earth on a vertical or horizontal axis? To what degrees is it “tipped”? 3. How long does it take Earth to make on full rotation? What do we call one rotation? http://spaceplace.nasa.gov/dr-‐marc-‐earth/en/ Ask Dr. Marc about the rotation of the Sun and Moon! Click on the link that says “Why is Earth rotating? Did it always have the same rotation period? Will it always have the same rotation period?” Before clicking the next link, list some things Dr. Marc said about why the Earth rotates and its rotational period: http://www.windows2universe.org/earth/moons_and_rings.html C. The Moon – facts and information 1. What is another name for the Moon? (First sentence) What is it’s diameter? 2. How many regions make up the Moon? What kinds of regions are they? 3. What is the Moon’s top layer made of?
4. What is under the Moon’s top layer? Go back to Dr. Marc! What does he have to say about the Moon? http://spaceplace.nasa.gov/dr-‐marc-‐earth/en/ What does he know about our Moon? List some things Dr. Marc says about the moon. http://btc.montana.edu/ceres/html/Birthday/birthdayphases.html D. The Phases of the Moon 1. Define what PHASES are: 2. How long is the Moon’s complete cycle? 3. How many phases of the Moon are there? What are they called? 4. What are some other names for these phases? (Bottom of the page) http://www.fearofphysics.com/SunMoon/phases.html E. Causes of the Moon Phases 1. Because the Moon’s light is just a reflection from the Sun, what causes the Moon phases?
http://www.harcourtschool.com/activity/moon_phases/ Watch the Phases of the Moon! Now that you know what each phase looks like tonight, look at the moon and see what phase it is in! Come back to school tomorrow with an answer and a picture you have drawn of the moon. http://www.bbc.co.uk/schools/scienceclips/ages/9_10/earth_sun_moon.shtml F. Watch this video on how the Earth, Moon and Sun all rotate together! Make FULL SCREEN, Click PLAY and play with the number of hours, days and months 1. Can you make the Earth orbit just once around the Sun? How many MONTHS does it take? 2. Can you make the Moon orbit just once around the Earth? How many DAYS does this take? 3. Can you make the Earth turn just once on its axis? How many HOURS does this take? 4. Click on LABELS and then click on each magnifying glass to find out more details about the Earth, Moon and Sun.
Answer Sheet A. Facts about the Earth 1. Makes one complete orbit around the Sun every 365.27 days. 2. Is mostly covered by water (75%). 3. Has a total of 1 satellite (the Moon). B. Earth’s Rotation 1. The Earth is rotating around an axis (called its rotational axis). 2. Some objects rotate about a horizontal axis, like a rolling log. Some objects, such as a skater, rotate about a vertical axis. The Earths axis is tipped over about 23.5° from vertical 3. The Earth rotates around once in 24 hours -‐ thats a rate of 1000 miles per hour!. The time it takes for the Earth to rotate completely around once is what we call a day. Its Earths rotation that gives us night and day. C. The Moon – Facts and Information 1. The Earths one natural satellite, the Moon, is more than one quarter the size of Earth itself (3,474 km diameter). 2. While there are only two basic types of regions on the Moons surface, there are many interesting surface features such as craters, mountain ranges, rilles, and lava plains. The structure of the Moons interior is more difficult to study. 3. The Moons top layer is a rocky solid, perhaps 800 km thick. 4. Beneath this layer is a partially molten zone. Although it is not known for certain, many lunar geologists believe the Moon may have a small iron core, even though the Moon has no magnetic field. D. The Phases of the Moon 1. The revolution of the Moon around the Earth makes the Moon appear as if it is changing shape in the sky. This is caused by the different angles from which we see the bright part of the Moons surface. These are called "phases" of the Moon. 2. The Moon passes through four major shapes during a cycle that repeats itself every 29.5 days. 3. Below are pictures of the four major shapes and a description of each. New Moon: The lighted side of the Moon faces away from the Earth. This means that the Sun, Earth, and Moon are almost in a straight line, with the Moon in between the Sun and the Earth. The Moon that we see looks very dark.
First Quarter: The right half of the Moon appears lighted and the left side of the Moon appears dark. During the time between the New Moon and the First Quarter Moon, the part of the Moon that appears lighted gets larger and larger every day, and will continue to grow until the Full Moon. Full Moon: The lighted side of the Moon faces the Earth. This means that the Earth, Sun, and Moon are nearly in a straight line, with the Earth in the middle. The Moon that we see is very bright from the sunlight reflecting off it. Last Quarter: Sometimes called Third Quarter. The left half of the Moon appears lighted, and the right side of the Moon appears dark. During the time between the Full Moon and the Last Quarter Moon, the part of the Moon that appears lighted gets smaller and smaller every day. It will continue to shrink until the New Moon, when the cycle starts all over again.4. There are also four other phases of the Moon sometimes used. They are as follows: This is known as a Waxing Crescent Moon. This Moon can be seen after the New Moon, but before the First Quarter Moon. The crescent will grow larger and larger every day, until the Moon looks like the First Quarter Moon. This Moon is known as a Waxing Gibbous Moon. This Moon can be seen after the First Quarter Moon, but before the Full Moon. The amount of the Moon that we can see will grow larger and larger every day. ("Waxing" means increasing, or growing larger.) This Moon is called a Waning Gibbous Moon. This Moon can be seen after the Full Moon, but before the Last Quarter Moon. The amount of the Moon that we can see will grow smaller and smaller every day. ("Waning" means decreasing, or growing smaller.)
This Moon is called the Waning Crescent Moon. This Moon can be seen after the Last Quarter Moon and before the New Moon. The crescent will grow smaller and smaller every day, until the Moon looks like the New Moon. E. Causes of the Moon Phases 1. So heres where the phases of the moon come from: Unless it moves behind the Earth, half of the moon (that faces the Sun) is always lit by the Sun. Thats why the moon always appears like a bright round ball in the left video. But look at where your green city viewpoint is in the left video; sort of off to the side of the moon. You are not looking at the moon directly-‐-‐ from the side, you see part of the lit side, and part of the dark side. How much of each depends on exactly where you are, and where the Sun, Moon, and Earth are. What the moon would look like from your green city is shown in the right video. F. Video on Earth, Moon and Sun 1. 12 months 2. 28 days 3. 24 hours 4. Earth i. What is it? The Earth is a planet made of rock, air and water. ii. What shape is it? Roughly spherical, like a slightly squashed ball. iii. How big is it? It has a circumference of about 40,000 km iv. How fast does it move? The Earth travels around the Sun once every year, at the speed of about 100,000 km per hour. v. Did you know? The Earth also spins on its axis (an imaginary line through its center) once every 24 hours 5. Moon i. What is it? A large ball of rock that moves around the Earth ii. What shape is it? Roughly spherical iii. How big is it? About a quarter of the size of the Earth iv. How fast does it move? The Moon travels around the Earth once every 28 days, at a speed of over 3,000 km per hour v. Did you know? Sometimes we see the whole Moon, and sometimes we see only part of the Moon, This is because of the way the light from the Sun falls on it 6. Sun i. What is it? The Sun is a star, it is very hot and it gives us heat and light ii. What shape is it? Roughly spherical iii. How big is it? The Sun is more than 100 times bigger than the Earth iv. How hot is it? 15 million degrees at the center v. Did you know? Our Sun is just one of about 400 thousand million stars in the galaxy we call the Milky Way