Earth and Space

Earth and Sun movement

Classroom Activity for 11-14 Supporting Physics Teaching

What the Activity is for

This activity involves constructing a model to help explain why we have day and night.

What to Prepare

  • pencils and paper

What Happens During this Activity

It is important to explain that one of the major activities of scientists is constructing models to represent events in the real world. This is an opportunity for the pupils to engage in such an activity.

  • Instruct the pupils to work in pairs, with one of them as the Sun and the other the Earth. Ask them to draw a picture or write a label to show which they are.
  • Tell them that the Sun has to write instructions for how the Earth should move over 24 hours. Likewise that the Earth must write how the Sun should move over 24 hours.
  • Now ask them to face each other. Tell them that you are going to call out the hours of the day and that they have to move as per their partner's instructions.
  • Call out the hours of the day regularly but fairly fast.
  • The first round is usually chaos so give them another chance to repeat it.
  • Now ask them to discuss briefly whether the instructions were correct.
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