Thursday, November 13, 2008
The Moon Features Lab was one of my all-time favorites. For me AND for my students.
I had found some beautiful raised-relief moon maps in a new science classroom I was assigned to one year. They showed all the main features with labels--in raised relief, no less!
I quickly found a black and white map of the Moon's Features in some old science workbook. (No Internet back then, you understand.) And the rest, as they say, is history!
I wrote up a version of this lab and gave my students an entire class period to find and label their maps. I had a huge 5 feet by 5 feet moon map that I taped to the front wall. It had all the Moon Landings as well as all the Moon Features.
My students LOVED the lab and I know for a fact they never looked at the moon in the same way again! I ran into a student of mine years later and he talked about THAT lab. Still knew the Moon's features and was looking forward to teaching them to his own children. That and Moon Phases AND Constellations, all of which I had taught that year's classes.
I remember another teacher sharing my classroom that year, on my planning period. She got interested in the lab and asked if she could do it with her students. This was a teacher who almost NEVER did any active labs or activities! SHE LOVED IT! So did her students and she was more open to trying active learning labs the rest of the year.
CONSIDER THIS: Teach the Features of the Moon!
FUN LINKS: Go to YouTube and look for Moon Clips to show during the Lab. The further they get into the Lab, the more Moon Features they will be able to call out to you as they look at the images on your Big Screen or SmartBoard! YouTube has several Moon Landings which would also be fun to show!
Starry Skies has a great Moon Features Image you could project as well.
And you ABSOLUTELY have to go to Google's Moon Map!!