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Lesson 6

Content
Australian

Science
Class: 6/7
Time: 1:15
Exploring Eclipses- investigating lunar eclipse
Science

Curriculum

Number of Children: 28

Predictable phenomena on Earth, including seasons and eclipses, are


caused by the relative positions of the sun, Earth and the moon
(ACSSU115)

Success

By the end of this lesson students will be able to:

Criteria
Resources

Understand that lunar eclipses are related to the moons position relative
to the sun and Earth.

Website Eclipses and transits (NASA)


http://www.nasa.gov/topics/solarsystem/features/eclipse/index.html
Website Lunar Eclipse 2105 (NASA)
http://science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-atnasa/2003/04nov_lunareclipse2105/
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0FdeLGpAQwQ
Experiment:
Orange
Grape
Tooth Pic
Torch
Blue tac
Interactive Activity:
http://highered.mheducation.com/olcweb/cgi/pluginpop.cgi?
it=swf::640::480::/sites/dl/free/007299181x/220730/eclipse_interactive.swf::Eclips
e%20Interactive

Introduction
10 minutes

Main Body
45 minutes

Explore eclipses

Share ideas about What is an eclipse? through reading


out loud the definitions of solar and lunar eclipses

Review the concept of how size is relative to distance.

Conduct a simulation to illustrate how a small object can


conceal a large object.

Show two YouTube videos on prezi that display the two


eclipses and discuss how size has a huge impact on the
causes of eclipses.

Describe eclipses students have seen either in person or in


the media. Talk about the eclipse that occurred the other
day and refer to Milis photo.

Examine lunar eclipses

Discuss ideas about how lunar eclipses occur. Do the


experiment as a whole class demonstration and display the
2 different eclipses.

Examine how an eclipse involving the sun, Earth and moon


can only occur when they are nearly in a straight line, with

one being hidden behind another, being viewed from a


third.

Clarify the terms penumbra, where the suns light is only


partially obscured; and umbra, where all direct light from
the sun is blocked.

View a simulation of a lunar eclipse that illustrates the


positions of the Earth, moon and sun during a lunar
eclipse.

Identify the relationship between the positions of the Earth,


sun and moon during lunar eclipses.

Activity
Show students the link to the interactive activity and ask them
to read through the first two sections and then to move onto
the activity. Complete worksheet in pairs through using the
interactive model. This interactive model allows student to
view the result of different positions of the moon on the earth
and sun. This worksheet allows children to experiment with the
model while also grasping a deeper understanding on the
eclipses.
http://highered.mheducation.com/olcweb/cgi/pluginpop.cgi?
it=swf::640::480::/sites/dl/free/007299181x/220730/eclipse_int
eractive.swf::Eclipse%20Interactive
Extension
Draw an annotated diagram to illustrate the positions of the
Earth, moon and sun during a lunar eclipse.
Conclusion

Go through the questions together as a class and discuss

10 minutes

reasoning using the interactive model. Refer back to the


success criteria and discuss with students if they have felt they

Catering to

have met it.


Through working in pairs ensure that students are paired up with appropriate

Individual

children. Also wandering around the classroom and assisting students where

Learners
Behaviour

needed through scaffolding.


Paddle pop sticks with names on ensure that students pay attention at all time in

Management

case their name gets called out.


3 warning system

Comments

Interactive Activity on the Moons Eclipses

1). Where is the moon in its orbit when a solar eclipse occurs? Where is the moon in its orbit when
a lunar eclipse occurs?
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2). What is the phase of the moon during a solar eclipse? What is the phase of the moon during a
lunar eclipse?
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3). Set the size of the moon and the size of its orbit to 100%. Set the tilt of orbit slider to zero
degrees, and watch a complete orbit of the moon. Do any eclipses occur? Now set the tilt of orbit
to about 3 degrees, and again watch one complete orbit. Do eclipses occur now?
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4). In real life, the tilt of the moons orbit is about 5 degrees. Should the moon cover the sun as it
moves past?
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5). However, even though the moons orbit is tilted so much, we still occasionally see eclipses.
Can you explain why?
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6). Set the size of the moon to 100%. Reset the orbital tilt to zero degrees and arrange a perfect
solar eclipse. Vary the size of the moon. Would a solar eclipse look dramatically different if the
moon were 20% larger? 20% smaller? Would a lunar eclipse look dramatically different?
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7). Reset the orbital tilt to zero degrees and size of moon to 100%. Increase the orbit size to 140
percent, and watch a solar eclipse. What do you see? Look at the shadow of the moonwhere
does it end?
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8). Reset all parameters to the their default values, and watch both a solar eclipse and a lunar
eclipse. Totality is defined as the time during which one body is completely covered by another,
either the sun by the moon, or the moon by the earths shadow. Which is longer, the totality of a
solar or lunar eclipse? Why?
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