Day and Night

Contributor: Samantha Penna. Lesson ID: 11975

When the sun comes up, where does it come from? When it goes down, where does it go? Actually, it stays where it is, and WE move! Learn about why we have day and night with a simple, fun experiment!


Physical Science, Space Science and Astronomy

learning style
Kinesthetic, Visual
personality style
Grade Level
Primary (K-2)
Lesson Type
Quick Query

Lesson Plan - Get It!

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Do you sleep during the day or at night? Why DO we have day and night?

The majority of people around the world sleep during the dark hours of the night.

Every day you experience day and night, but why does this happen? Read on to find out!

day and night

The Earth is rotating in space. This means the Earth is spinning in a circle on its axis. Stand up and rotate in a circle. This is what the Earth is doing in space.

There are twenty four hours in day. It takes the Earth twenty four hours to complete one full rotation. The Earth's rotation causes day and night. As the Earth rotates, some places on the Earth experience day, while other parts of the world experience night. One side of the Earth will face the sun, and the opposite side of the Earth will face away from the sun, causing it to be dark.

Take a look at the example below. North America and South America are experiencing daytime, while Africa, Europe, and Asia are experiencing nighttime:

day and night

Now, you see how the Earth rotates and how its rotation affects day and night. How can you tell the difference between day and night? Share your answer with your parent or teacher.

day and night

During the day, it is light out. Even if the sun is hiding behind blankets of clouds, the sun is still in the sky and providing everyone on Earth with its light. Gloomy, rainy days can make it seem a little darker, but as long as it is daytime, you should be able to see outside. A sunny day is a great day to go on an adventure and see all the sights around you. Thanks to the sun, you can see the beautiful landscapes that surround you!

sunny landscape

During the night, everything becomes dark! Cloudy nights block out the stars and the moon, causing it to be pitch black. Nights with clear skies will be lighter than nights with cloudy skies. The moon reflects the light from the sun and provides the Earth with a little bit of light at night. The beautiful stars in the sky also provide the Earth with light at night.

night sky

You learned about why the Earth has day and night. Tell your parent or teacher why this happens.

After sharing, move on to the Got It? section to reveal the answer.

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