SC.4.E.5.2

Describe the changes in the observable shape of the moon over the course of about a month.
General Information
Subject Area: Science
Grade: 4
Body of Knowledge: Earth and Space Science
Idea: Level 2: Basic Application of Skills & Concepts
Big Idea: Earth in Space and Time - Humans continue to explore Earth's place in space. Gravity and energy influence the formation of galaxies, including our own Milky Way Galaxy, stars, the Solar System, and Earth. Humankind's need to explore continues to lead to the development of knowledge and understanding of our Solar System.
Date Adopted or Revised: 02/08
Date of Last Rating: 05/08
Status: State Board Approved
Assessed: Yes

Related Courses

This benchmark is part of these courses.
5020050: Science - Grade Four (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 - 2022, 2022 and beyond (current))
7720050: Access Science Grade 4 (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 - 2018, 2018 and beyond (current))

Related Access Points

Alternate version of this benchmark for students with significant cognitive disabilities.
SC.4.E.5.In.2: Label three phases of the moon, including full, half (quarter), and crescent.
SC.4.E.5.Su.2: Identify a full moon and a half (quarter) moon.
SC.4.E.5.Pa.2: Recognize a full moon as a circle.

Related Resources

Vetted resources educators can use to teach the concepts and skills in this benchmark.

Lesson Plans

Lesson #3 - Moon Phase Unit:

This is the final lesson in the Moon Phase unit. In this lesson, students will complete an algorithm sheet to understand how they can connect the flowchart model to real-world programming. It also gives an insight to various blocks used in Scratch and their significance. This lesson allows students to program in Scratch based on the flowchart model made in the previous lesson and switch the costumes based on the operational conditions placed on the sprite. The final product in this lesson will showcase the students' conceptual understanding of the Moon phases in a computer science medium.

Type: Lesson Plan

Lesson #2 - Moon Phase Unit:

This is lesson 2 of 3 in the Moon Phase unit. This lesson will help students design a flowchart model to find the phase of the Moon by making decisions based on certain conditions. This lesson also gives students insight into working with the design model made earlier and an opportunity to upload/draw costumes of different lunar phases in Scratch.

Type: Lesson Plan

Lesson #1 - Moon Phase Unit :

This is lesson 1 of 3 in the Moon Phase Unit. This lesson introduces students to the eight Moon phases and their names in a counter-clockwise sequential order starting with the New Moon as phase 1. Students will also be introduced to how a flowchart can help make decisions, in this case whether or not the Moon is full.

Type: Lesson Plan

Moon Phases:

This activity asks students to use models of Earth, the Sun, and the Moon system to discover why moon phases occur. Students use a Styrofoam ball to represent the Moon, which will be lit by a single light source in the classroom, to observe how different portions of the ball are illuminated as they hold it in various positions.

Type: Lesson Plan

Dance by the Light of the Moon:

Professional Partiers, Inc. is having a difficult time setting a date for a client's Halloween party. The client has specific criteria they like would to have included in deciding on a good date. This project will familiarize students with the phases of the moon. It allows students an opportunity to interpret data from charts and collaborate with one another to provide a thoughtful written response for the company.

Model Eliciting Activities, MEAs, are open-ended, interdisciplinary problem-solving activities that are meant to reveal students’ thinking about the concepts embedded in realistic situations. Click here to learn more about MEAs and how they can transform your classroom.

Type: Lesson Plan

Traveling to the Moon MEA:

This MEA is designed to help students create a process for selecting a Space Shuttle to send to the moon given the particular criteria provided. Students will master the Science Standard SC.4.E.5.2: Describe the changes in the observable shape of the moon over the course of about a month . Students will also practice and reinforce the Math Standard MAFS.4.MD.1.2: Use the four operations to solve word problems involving distances, intervals of time, and money, including problems involving simple fractions or decimals. Represent fractional quantities of distance and intervals of time using linear models. Students will also practice ELA Standard LAFS.4.W.2.4: Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development and organization are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.

Model Eliciting Activities, MEAs, are open-ended, interdisciplinary problem-solving activities that are meant to reveal students’ thinking about the concepts embedded in realistic situations. Click here to learn more about MEAs and how they can transform your classroom.

Type: Lesson Plan

Phases of the Moon:

In this lesson, students will model and draw the phases of the moon from the perspective of both the Earth and the Sun using 3-dimensional foam balls. Students will learn the reason for the moon's phases and that the moon is always illuminated on one side by the sun.

Type: Lesson Plan

The Lunar Cycle:

In this lesson, students learn about the Moon's changing appearance and its pattern of movement. Through class discussion, activities, and multimedia resources, students explore the phases of the Moon and are introduced to the concept of orbital motion. The Moon, Earth's only natural satellite, is easily observed with the naked eye. Over the course of one month, students observe and investigate its full range of appearances and its pattern of movement in the sky. Students then model the sun, earth and moon system in the classroom.

Type: Lesson Plan

Moon Light Through the Month:

Students will work in small groups to arrange moon phase cards into the correct sequence.

Type: Lesson Plan

What Causes the Phases of the Moon?:

The phases of the moon occur because of the revolution of the moon around the Earth. The amount that one sees of the moon depends on where the moon is in its revolution around the Earth. The time it takes for the moon to rotate/revolve around the earth is about 28 days.

Type: Lesson Plan

Original Student Tutorial

The Phases of the Moon:

Use observations to discover how the moon's appearance changes during a lunar cycle and learn the names of the moon's phases in this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Teaching Ideas

Earth and Moon Viewer:

This website can be used to show students views of the moon. The Earth can also be viewed.

Type: Teaching Idea

Lunar Lollipops:

The students work in teams of two to discover the relative positions of the Earth, Sun and Moon that produce the different phases of the Moon.

Type: Teaching Idea

Moon Phases:

Interactive moon phases

Type: Teaching Idea

Text Resource

Interesting Earth Questions and Answers:

In this resource scientist Dr. Marc answers 6 interesting questions about space technology, the Earth and the Moon. There is an option to have Dr. Marc read the answers by simply clicking on the speaker icon beside each question.

Type: Text Resource

Video/Audio/Animation

Lunar Phase Animation:

This Youtube video provides a continuous time lapse sequence video of the lunar phases.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

STEM Lessons - Model Eliciting Activity

Dance by the Light of the Moon:

Professional Partiers, Inc. is having a difficult time setting a date for a client's Halloween party. The client has specific criteria they like would to have included in deciding on a good date. This project will familiarize students with the phases of the moon. It allows students an opportunity to interpret data from charts and collaborate with one another to provide a thoughtful written response for the company.

Model Eliciting Activities, MEAs, are open-ended, interdisciplinary problem-solving activities that are meant to reveal students’ thinking about the concepts embedded in realistic situations. Click here to learn more about MEAs and how they can transform your classroom.

Traveling to the Moon MEA:

This MEA is designed to help students create a process for selecting a Space Shuttle to send to the moon given the particular criteria provided. Students will master the Science Standard SC.4.E.5.2: Describe the changes in the observable shape of the moon over the course of about a month . Students will also practice and reinforce the Math Standard MAFS.4.MD.1.2: Use the four operations to solve word problems involving distances, intervals of time, and money, including problems involving simple fractions or decimals. Represent fractional quantities of distance and intervals of time using linear models. Students will also practice ELA Standard LAFS.4.W.2.4: Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development and organization are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.

Model Eliciting Activities, MEAs, are open-ended, interdisciplinary problem-solving activities that are meant to reveal students’ thinking about the concepts embedded in realistic situations. Click here to learn more about MEAs and how they can transform your classroom.

Original Student Tutorials Science - Grades K-8

The Phases of the Moon:

Use observations to discover how the moon's appearance changes during a lunar cycle and learn the names of the moon's phases in this interactive tutorial.

Student Resources

Vetted resources students can use to learn the concepts and skills in this benchmark.

Original Student Tutorial

The Phases of the Moon:

Use observations to discover how the moon's appearance changes during a lunar cycle and learn the names of the moon's phases in this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Text Resource

Interesting Earth Questions and Answers:

In this resource scientist Dr. Marc answers 6 interesting questions about space technology, the Earth and the Moon. There is an option to have Dr. Marc read the answers by simply clicking on the speaker icon beside each question.

Type: Text Resource

Parent Resources

Vetted resources caregivers can use to help students learn the concepts and skills in this benchmark.

Teaching Idea

Earth and Moon Viewer:

This website can be used to show students views of the moon. The Earth can also be viewed.

Type: Teaching Idea