Objective: The children will make telescopes and explore what is in the sky during both day and night.‹ Return to Theme
Note: This lesson requires taking the children outside after making their telescopes.
Common things that we can see in the sky are clouds, raindrops, the Sun, the Moon, stars, airplanes, kites, and birds. Some of the things in the sky are easy to see, and some things are harder to see. The Moon and stars are in the sky during the day, but we cannot usually see them because during the day, the Sun brightens the sky. The Sun is actually a star, and it is the closest star to the Earth. As the Sun sets, it begins to dip below the horizon so that the Moon and stars become more visible. As the Sun goes down, the sunlight disappears, making other things in the sky more difficult to see.
We have day and night because the Earth spins, or rotates, on its axis. We have daytime when our side of the Earth is facing the Sun. While we are having daytime, the other side of the Earth is experiencing nighttime. The process that causes day and night is called “rotation.” When we look up, it appears as if the Sun is moving across the sky. It rises in the east and sets in the west. The Sun is not really moving; the Earth is slowly spinning, making the Sun appear to move. It takes 1 full day (24 hours) for the Earth to complete its rotation.
Be sure to clearly explain to the children that they should not look directly at the Sun.
These lessons are aligned with the Common Core State Standards ("CCSS"). The CCSS provide a consistent, clear understanding of the concepts and skills children are expected to learn and guide teachers to provide their students with opportunities to gain these important skills and foundational knowledge.
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There are currently no Common Core Standards for pre-k, but these lessons are aligned as closely as possible to capture the requirements and meet the goals of Common Core Standards. However, these lessons were neither reviewed or approved by the National Governors Association Center for Best Practices or the Council of Chief State School Officers, which together are the owners and developers of the Common Core State Standards.