Reflection: Adjustments to Practice Why Does my Shadow Change? Day 1 - Section 2: Warm Up


Teachable Moments 

This lesson was a great lesson, full of teachable moments.  This was the first time I had taught this lesson and as we got into discussion, my vision for what it could be grew.  While creating the shadow puppets, I learned that a discussion about light energy and how it reacts to different materials was necessary.  The fact that a shadow is created because their hand blocks out or stops the light was something I did not think I would have to teach, but many of my students did not know that.  We discussed how the light would react if it were to hit a mirror instead (reflect), which would still create a shadow because it is stopping the light.  We then discussed how the results would be different if the object the light was hitting was a piece of glass.  Students told me it would go through the window so a shadow would not be created.  

We had discussed light energy earlier in the year but did not relate it to forming shadows when the light is absorbed.  We playing with mirrors and reflected light around the room and  discussed how light that hits the wall, a desk, our arm, etc. is absorbed but still did not relate it to forming shadows.  After teaching this lesson I thought how great it would be to teach it at the beginning of the year, instead of at the end.   It would fit perfectly into the first unit on scientists at work because models are being introduced in that unit and this 3 day lesson has students create a model, and test it against real life shadows to see how accurate the model is.  It also provides so much background knowledge about energy (solar and light), as well as background information about how the Earth rotates causing the sun to appear to move across the sky.  This would be great information to be able to pull back in as these concepts are taught later in the year.  

  Changes for Next Year
  Adjustments to Practice: Changes for Next Year
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Why Does my Shadow Change? Day 1

Unit 6: Earth's Place In Space
Lesson 5 of 9

Objective: SWBAT build a model to determine how a shadow changes throughout the day.

Big Idea: Students build a model to investigate how the position of the sun affects a shadow.

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13 teachers like this lesson
Science, Earth and Space Science, space, Planets
  60 minutes
model set up 2
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