Learning About the Moon: Activities for Kids

learning about the moon: activities for kids

I hope your child has been enjoying using the moon journal that I shared over at Playful Learning recently.  If your child has been observing the moon, no doubt he has many questions.  When my children first began their moon journals it didn’t take long before they asked questions like:  Why does the moon change?  Why does the moon glow?  Why is there is no moon at night sometimes?  Why can we see the moon during the day sometimes?  If we see the moon during the day, does that mean that in parts of the world where it’s night there is no moon?  What causes a halo around the moon?  What caused the craters?

If your child has similar questions, exploring these resources and activities will help answer those questions and further his investigations about the moon:

  • About Our Moon:  This short, child friendly video by NASA eClips answers some basic questions and shows how to simply demonstrate the phases of the moon.  Study Jams also has a simple video.
  • Making craters: This activity will demonstrate the impact that meteors have on the moon’s surface.  Make sure to note the differences between meteors of different sizes (depth of crater, how far the ejecta radiates, etc).  I do recommend using flour with cocoa as it demonstrates the effects of impact and so well.  However, if you prefer not to use food items, try this activity with water balloons dropped from different heights.
  • Moon Halos: Here is a brief description of moon halos.  Adding a record of the day’s weather to his moon journal may help your child discover the correlation between lunar halos and weather.
  • Phases of the Moon: Click here for instructions from NASA for demonstrating moon phases.  You could also give this “moon phases transporter” from Scholastic a try.
  • Other activities: Living Montessori Now has put together a nice collection of moon activities to peruse.
  • Books: Phases of the Moon by Gillia Olson; The Moon Book by Gail Gibbons et al

Many wishes for fun and inspired exploration!

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