Over the last two weeks, we studied the Sun, Moon and our “Blue Planet”. I admit I’m taking a week longer to finish what’s scheduled, but as long as we’re enjoying the process and continue to learn. I’m good with the pace.
We learned that the gravity of the Sun holds its gases together; forming a consistent shape and size. The Sun’s gravity also pulls on the planets so that they go around it. It is also the perfect distance between the Sun and Earth that allows life to flourish. How amazing is that?!
To demonstrate what “orbit” meant, I got Hannah to swirl a ball of blue play dough (Earth) around a piece of orange play dough (Sun) on a dish. It certainly takes practice to steady our hands and swirl the ball at a constant rate!
We learned that the Earth rotates every day and takes a year to orbit around the Sun. To understand how day and night occurs, we used a flashlight (Sun) to shine on a ball (Earth). We mark a spot on the ball as Singapore, then rotate it slowly.
Next, Hannah became the Sun. She had to hold still (which was difficult) with the flashlight while I go around her with the ball. She couldn’t wait to be Earth! As she walked around me, she sang the months of year in English and Mandarin.
Now the messy bit!
We read that the Moon’s craters are formed when meteorites hit its surface. And because the Moon has no atmosphere, it has no weather or wind. So once a crater is formed, there is no way to remove it.
Hannah had fun throwing peanuts (meteorites) onto a plate of flour (moon). We had observed that the greater the force used to throw the peanut, the bigger/deeper the crater. Eventually, she decided to put her hands on the “moon”!
I love this model because it summarises nicely what we’ve learned. You can download the Sun-Earth-Moon Orbiting Craft here.
Here’s the list books we’ve used:
- Sun: Energy for Our Solar System by Julie K. Lundgren
- The Sun: The Star of Our Solar System by Ellen Lawrence
- The Moon by Nuria Roca, Carol Isern, Rocio Bonilla (check out “The Sun” by the same authors too!)
One reason why I enjoy homeschooling? It’s because I’m always learning together with my child. And without fail, I walk away awe-struck by God’s greatness.
What have you been learning lately?