Contributor: Rachel Lewis. Lesson ID: 12035

You have seen your shadow on the ground and maybe have sat in the shadow of a tree or rock to cool off. What if a shadow were big enough to cover the sun or moon? Find out how that actually happens!


Space Science and Astronomy

learning style
Kinesthetic, Visual
personality style
Otter, Beaver
Grade Level
Intermediate (3-5), Middle School (6-8)
Lesson Type
Dig Deeper

Lesson Plan - Get It!

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Have you ever wanted to see a solar eclipse? Check the Nasa Eclipse Web Site Solar Eclipse Page for upcoming solar eclipses! Make sure you wear protective glasses when viewing the eclipse and watch what happens when day turns to night!

"Hey! Who turned out the light?"

What would you think if the sun suddenly disappeared from the sky in the middle of the day? Well, that is exactly what happens during an eclipse.

An eclipse occurs when one object in space moves into the shadow of another object in space. In this lesson, you will explore two different types of eclipses: lunar and solar.

  1. Learn more about lunar eclipses by reading Moon eclipses from the European Space Agency. Then, discover what happens during solar eclipses by reading The European Space Agency's Sun eclipses.
  2. Now, sit back and relax while you watch Eclipses: Crash Course Astronomy #5 to see some cool pictures and get behind the science of solar and lunar eclipses:Image - Video

That video was filled with some pretty amazing information. It's time to use what you've learned and take a look at the Eclipse: Lunar Eclipse and Eclipse: Total Solar Eclipse diagrams at Britannica Kids. Using these images as a guide, draw your own diagrams of a solar and a lunar eclipse. Label the positions of the sun, Earth, moon, umbra, and penumbra for each type of eclipse.

Can you believe how amazing our solar system is? Just imagine the sun being completely covered during the day! The sun and moon are in perfect alignment for brief periods of time, and it only happens once every few decades. Don't miss it!

Move on to the Got It? section to play some online games and create a lapbook!

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