“Giftedness is not what you do or how hard you work. It is who you are. You think differently. You experience life intensely. You care about injustice. You seek meaning. You appreciate and strive for the exquisite. You are painfully sensitive. You are extremely complex. You cherish integrity. Your truth-telling has gotten you in trouble. Should 98% of the population find you odd, seek the company of those who love you just the way you are. You are not broken. You do not need to be fixed. You are utterly fascinating. Trust yourself!”

Linda Silverman~Gifted Development Center Denver


Friday, 5 April 2013

Saw it on Pinterest...Bought it at Dollar Tree...Made it at Home...MOON PHASE FLIP BOOK FREEBIE

As most of you already know, I am a wee bit of a Pinterest addict.  In fact, Pinterest is what started me blogging, and tweeting and FBing...so it's all Pinterests' fault!  Right now I am teaching a unit on Space.  I love teaching this unit, but sometimes find the concepts a little abstract for my grade six students.  Here in Ontario students will cover Space and Astronomy again in grade 9, but I still like to do a good job teaching the expectations from the grade six curriculum.

By Moon_phases_en.jpg: Orion 8 derivative work: Arnaugir (This file was derived from:  Moon_phases_en.jpg) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0) or GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html)], via Wikimedia Commons

I saw a picture on the blog Science Teaching Junkie of a project that really struck me.  It was a hands-on way to demonstrate the phases of the moon.  I love teaching using hands-on materials!  The kids love it too.  I decided I had to make it...or rather I had to get my hubby to make it for me.  Here's what he made me (and my students) last week.





Where does Dollar Tree fit in?  I bought everything I needed there!  If you want to make your own Phases of the Moon viewer you will need:

  • 1 piece of black foam core
  • 8 mid sized foam balls
  • 1 larger sized foam ball
  • glue gun
  • markers
My hubby traced a circle in the middle of the foam core and cut it out with a box cutter.  He coloured half of each mid sized foam ball with a black permanent marker.  He also coloured the larger foam ball to look like a Sun.  I am sure you could paint the foam balls too, but the markers were fast and easy.  Next, he used the glue gun to mount the foam balls at evenly spaced intervals around the hole in the middle of the board and then mounted the Sun on one side.  This was students will get the view you see below, with the Sun always facing one side of the moon.



I was still skeptical about whether or not this would work until I stuck my head through the opening.  I was amazed as I rotated the board around! I was looking at each phase of the moon.  My head acted as the EARTH and I could see the Sun in some of the phases and not in others (like the diagram above).  This was awesome!  

I called my daughter and told her to put it over her head too. After an eye roll and strange look she tried it.   I had to talk her through the phases as she didn't remember any of them.  See what I mean about the concepts "not sticking" when you can't experience them in a hands-on manner?  She had studied Space last year, but had only learned about the phases by watching a video.  

You could label the phases on the board if you want to...but I think I am going to use it as a  pre and post assessment for my students.    






I love using the Moon Book by Gail Gibbons when I am teaching the phases of the moon.  Although this book is written for primary students, I use it to reinforce the phases of the moon with full-color illustrations and basic information. Using beautiful, spacious layouts, in addition to learning about lunar phases, students also learn about eclipses, lunar exploration, and the moon's effect on the earth. The detailled illustrations help readers visualize the movement of the moon in relation to the earth and sun, and moon exploration is explained simply, without too much overwhelming detail. Gibbons' direct style makes this book an excellent teaching tool for a first look at the moon, the earth's natural satellite. (adapted from Scholastic.com)


Each year the students make a Phases of the Moon Flip Book.  Each night students go outside and observe the moon.  They are to record the time, the weather and any other observations.  Students then sketch what they see when they look at the moon.  If they moon is not visible due to weather factors or time of night, they may use an on line source such as the one you can view HERE to find the phase and record it that way.  Once they have done the recording for 28 days, they carefully cut out all the dates, put them in chronological order, staple the corner and Presto!  they have created their own animated flip book.  Students will be amazed when the flip through the pages and see the phases of the moon come to life in an animated fashion.





Click on the image below to download this FREEBIE.





The other day I bought a huge number of Oreo cookies to try the Oreo Phases of the Moon activity I downloaded from Addie Education's TPT store.  Thank goodness the cookies were on sale for $1.99 a package!  I think the students will LOVE this too!



Looking for more great MUST READ mentor texts?  Check out Collaboration Cuties Link Up by clicking on the image above. There is a different topic each week.  You can read more about the topics HERE.


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20 comments:

  1. We have just started our space unit too! My students have already been working on their moon journals for a week and they each had a performance assessment
    where they had to demonstrate the Earth's rotation/revolution/axis and explain night/day/year and show the moon's revolution.

    We're going to make a fun wheel to put in our notebook's with the moon's phases but now I am going to add in this awesome idea! When we had briefly discussed the moon phases the students were getting a bit confused with eclipses, so I think being able to see them will really make it stick! Thanks for sharing!

    Also, Pinterest is what got me blogging too!
    Upper Grades Are Awesome

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  2. Your performance assessment idea is great! Very similar to my idea for using the phases of the moon model/poster board. I know my students will "own it" when while turning the board, they can tell me what each phase of the moon is and why. Glad to meet another Pinterest inspired blogger!
    Sidney

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  3. Wow! Your board looks WAY better than mine! Thanks for the shout-out.

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    Replies
    1. Shayna,
      Your board is awesome! Mine is just markers and glue! I LOVED that you said go to Dollar Tree. We finally have one here in Toronto and I am addicted to it. I knew just what to buy and where to find it. I made the board for about $2.50 total. I took it to school and the first thing that happened was another teacher knocked off one of the foam balls! ACK! I glued it back on, and it's good as new. I think your idea was brilliant! Thanks again for sharing. I hope you can use the flip book with your class!
      Sidney

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  4. Thanks for the shout-out! Love the ideas on your blog!

    Addie

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  5. And I love the ideas on YOUR blog..so we both win! Hope you are having a great weekend my Canadian friend. Hope you linked up with the TEST PREP LINKY PARTY too...I did send you an invite!
    If you didn't get it you can link up here: http://teachingisagift.blogspot.ca/2013/04/test-prep-linky-party.html. I love that test prep idea with the coloured post its!
    Sidney

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  6. Love this! It's so wonderfully hands-on and I just have to make it!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I hope you enjoy it. It was so easy to make and it works, it really works!
      Have a great week!
      Sidney

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  7. Love the idea- kids need to learn in a hands on and relevant way or else they have no incentive to remember the information! I teach 3rd 4th and 5th graders so, from the younger perspective, we put a standing lamp in the middle of the classroom and all spun around in circles to see what effect the spinning of the earth had on day and night. Your board is a great next step to introduce the moon into that equation!

    Polka Dots & Teaching Tots

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  8. Susan,
    I agree totally. I also do the lamp activity if I can get my room dark enough! My blinds are broken and it's hard to get the shadow. Even though I have done this activity every year, I found I still had students who didn't "get it". I was always looking for new ways to teach the concept. I hope this board will help fill the gap for some of the students who still need reinforcement. I also want to use it to assess how much they did learn!
    Thanks for your comment.
    Sidney

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  9. Love the interactive moon phases board!!! Great stuff!

    -gayla
    Teach On.

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  10. Glad you visited and left a comment. The board is awesome! You would not believe how many adults have tried it too! Everyone who visits my class has to put their head through it and try it. It's funny how somethings seem so simple and yet are so effective!
    Sidney

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  11. Great post! I love that book! I'm going to pass these ideas on to the teacher that I'm teaming with...she's teaching all the science this coming year. I'm language arts and social studies. Thanks for the great ideas!
    Fabulous Fifth Grade Fun

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    Replies
    1. I have never had the luxury of co-teaching, so I get to teach it all. I wonder what it would be like to focus on only one area for a year. I often think that trying junior high or high school might be interesting, and then I think of all things I WOULDN'T be able to teach! I love to integrate! Thanks for visiting and sharing with your colleagues, that's what it's all about!
      Sidney

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  12. Oh, I totally think our books could be used together this week. Great activity! Thanks for sharing. :)
    ~Brandee
    Creating Lifelong Learners

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    Replies
    1. Brandee,
      I thought so too! I love learning about a new book I can add to my "unit box" so reading your post was inspirational to me! Thanks for visiting and leaving a comment!
      Sidney

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  13. Oh, wow, this is great! I have never seen the poster board that they can stick their head into! That's great! I love it! I may have to try this this year!

    Thanks so much for linking up!
    Amanda
    Collaboration Cuties

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    Replies
    1. Amanda,
      It is a hoot! You just have to be certain to glue down the styrofoam balls really well! My class loved it, but honestly, I have to admit I think I loved it the most! Hands-on learning is the way to go for me!
      Sidney

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  14. This was one of my favorite books to use this year during our Moon unit. Thank you for sharing your great ideas! I am a new follower.

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  15. Miss King,
    Why thank you for becoming a new follower! I love to know who is reading my lil ole blog! The Moon book is great isn't it? Glad you agree! Some times the old stand bys are worth a second look.
    Sidney

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