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Science - 3rd Grade
Standard 1 Objective 1
Science - 3rd Grade
Standard 1 Objective 2
1 class periods of 60 minutes each
In a small group setting, the Earths counterclockwise revolution, counterclockwise rotation, tilt, day and night cycle, and the Suns apparent movement across the earth are explored. Students, also, model the phases of the moon in groups of two.
Materials based on a class of 30 students split up into groups of 6.
Presented within the context of the lesson.
3a. Know science information specified for their grade level.
3c. Explain science concepts and principles using their own words and explanations.
4c. Use scientific language appropriate to grade level in oral and written communication.
Pre-lab discussion: Ask the students for some background information they already have on the Earth, Moon, and Sun. Clear up any misconceptions quickly. Review for them gravity and its effects on our solar system. Discuss that the Earth orbits the Sun because the Sun is much larger than Earth. The Moon orbits Earth because Earth is larger than the Moon. Explain that today they are going to model how the Earth revolves around the Sun, how the Moon revolves around Earth, and why the Moon appears to look different over the course of a month.
I. Earth The small globe represents the Earth and a flashlight represents the Sun. Use these models to demonstrate the following concepts.
II. Moon -- The small Styrofoam ball will represent the Moon. Demonstrate these concepts using all three models. Approximately four Moons equal the size of our Earth.
III. Phases of the Moon-- Use the Moon models and flashlight for the following experiment. Poke one wooden skewer into each Moon so that the students can hold the Moon up. Divide the students into groups of two. Make sure the students each get a turn looking at the moon and reciting the phases. The person holding the moon should call out the phases of the moon as they move to each new position. Give the person holding the moon the half page Phases of the Moon sheet so they can compare what they are seeing to the name of the phase.
** The rest of these descriptions describe what the student who is holding the moon observes. This student will see the phases of the Moon as they rotate with the Moons revolution.
IV. Using our bodies to review the concepts of the Earth and Sun. Put a table in the middle of the room. Have a lamp on the table with a light bulb in it but no lampshade. Turn off the classroom lights, close the window blinds, and have the students form a large circle around the lit lamp. The lamp represents the Sun and the students represent Earth.
Have the students form a large circle around the Sun. Students should face the Sun and answer the following questions. Act out the actions indicated. This performance assessment should help you judge whether the students understood the concepts from the lesson.
Rio Tinto Hands-on Science Curriculum Team