The Moon Phase Game

Why

Study the phases of the moon then test your knowledge with this exciting in-class moon game!


Steps

1. The lunar month is 29.5 days long. During this time, the moon orbits the earth. As it travels, we see different portions of the moon at night, depending on where the moon is in relation to the sun and the earth. The different views we see are called the phases of the moon. Each lunar month starts with the first phase of the moon called new moon.


2. With your class, research the 8 phases of the moon. Find the name of each phase and a picture of what the moon looks like during that time. Why does the moon appear to change with each phase?


3. Play the moon game with your class! Split up into four teams and choose a color of Crayola Dry-Erase Markers or Dry-Erase Crayons for your team. Select one member of each team to go up to the class whiteboard on each turn. When the teacher calls out a phase of the moon, each contestant will draw that phase of the moon on the whiteboard with your team’s color. The first contestant to correctly draw the phase wins a point for his or her team!


Safety Guidelines

Adult supervision is required for any arts & crafts project. Observe children closely and intervene as necessary to prevent potential safety problems and ensure appropriate use of arts and crafts materials. Some craft items, particularly beads and buttons, are potential choking hazards for young children. Avoid use of such small parts with children younger than 3 years. Craft items such as scissors, push pins and chenille sticks may have sharp points or edges. Avoid use of materials with sharp points by children younger than 4 years. Read all manufacturers' safety warnings before using arts and craft supplies.

Adaptations

  • Keep a moon-tracking journal. For the next 30 days, draw a small picture of the moon each night in a journal. Label the drawing with the phase of the moon that you think applies. Share your results with your class and compare! Did each student track all 8 phases of the moon during the 30-day study? Are the results consistent among the class?
  • Which team correctly identified the most phases of the moon? Which phase was the most missed during the game? Review each phase on the board with the whole class again.

Related Lesson Plans

Lesson Plans

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Supplies

crayola supplies
  • Dry-Erase Markers
  • Dry-Erase Crayons

Overview

grades

  • Grades 1 to 3
  • Grades 4 to 6
  • Grades 7 to 12

subjects

  • Science
  • Visual Arts

time

  • 30 to 60 minutes

benefits

  • Students define lunar month, new moon, waxing crescent, first quarter, waxing gibbous, full moon, waning gibbous, last quarter and waning crescent.

  • Students research with their classmates to find the names of each phase of the moon and illustrations of each phase as well.

  • Students recall the phases of the moon during an in-class game.

Cirriculum

Research Canada Standards
Research UK Standards
Research U.S. Standards