Reply To: Module 2 – The Moon, the Earth and the Sun

Mary Herlihy

    I would choose activity set The Sun and shadows

    These activities from the sun resource booklet by Maeve Liston from Mary Immaculate College are ones that I would use in my classroom. I think the children would find them very engaging and enjoy them.

    Activity: The Day and Night Sky

    You will need: Pictures of the day and night sky, paper and crayons.


    1. Place different pictures of the day and night sky on display and ask the children “what

    are the differences?” between the two.

    Questions: Describe the sky during the day. Describe the sky at night. What is the

    difference between day and night?

    2. Ask them to list as many things they see in the sky at night (Moon, Stars) and during

    the day (Sun, Moon, Clouds). Get them to describe shapes, size, textures and colours

    of these objects and the sky using descriptive and comparative language for example

    light, dark, bright, shade etc. Discuss how we are never in total darkness because of the

    Moon and stars.

    3. Ask them to draw pictures of a day and night sky or make a collage of a day and

    night sky as a whole class group.


    Activity: The Sun in the Sky

    You will need: Pictures of a cloudy and sunny day (in the sunny day try to include shadows).

    1. Show them pictures of a cloudy and sunny day. Ask them to describe the sunny day.

    Ask them: do they notice anything else in the picture (shadows)? Ask them what are

    shadows, what does your shadow look like? how are they formed?

    2. There are many Videos on YouTube about Shadows for example ‘Sesame Street – My

    Furry Little Shadow.’

    3. Ask them to describe the cloudy day. Discuss: is the Sun around on a cloudy day?

    Note: Shadows are the absence of light i.e. darkness. They are black. They are not grey or

    any other colour that children may decide to use to draw shadows.


    Why is it darker on a cloudy day? What does the Sun give us? Is the Sun important? If we

    had no Sun in the sky would it matter?

    Discuss that the Sun gives us light and heat and why these forms of energy are important to

    support life. Discuss how you are hot on a summer’s day and cold on a winter’s day.

    What type of clothes would you wear on a hot day and on a cold day?

    1. Ask them to complete the picture of a cloudy day (might discuss the rain here) below.

    2. Ask them to complete a picture of a sunny day (discuss shadows here) below. Get them

    to draw in the Sun’s rays of light.




    Activity: Shadows in the School Yard


    • Light travels in straight lines.

    • Sunlight light does not travel through opaque objects and so casts a shadow.

    • Shadows are areas of darkness.

    You will need: Worksheets and black crayons

    1. Go outside on a sunny day.


    Why can we see today? Where did the light come from? The Sun.

    What do you think your shadows will look like? Why?

    2. Then get them to stand in a line with their back to the direction of the Sun so that they

    can see the shape of the shadow that forms on the ground in front of them.

    3. Get them to describe its shape and colour.


    Ask them why is it black or dark?

    So, what is a shadow?

    4. Trace with chalk the shadows of some pupils in the class.

    5. Ask them to describe its shape.

    What does your shadow look like?

    Is it the exact shape of the person? Why?

    When can you see your shadow best of all?

    Do you always have a shadow?

    How do you think Shadows are formed?

    Where is the light coming from?


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