Wednesday, 18 March 2015
Learning about the solar eclipse
This Friday we will see the first total solar eclipse for 16 years! It's all very exciting and we are eagerly awaiting this rare event. I remember watching the last solar eclipse in 1999. We were all anticipating a spectacular sight of the solar corona surrounding the hidden sun but, unfortunately, we did not get a chance to witness this due to the cloudy weather. Still, it was an unusual occurrence, seeing the sky blacken for a few minutes in the daytime, which has stayed with me. Although I don't remember much, I was quite young, I do remember hundreds of camera flashes during the blackness when people were trying to catch a shot of the sun's sensational corona.
As we will be watching the eclipse on Friday, I thought it would be a good idea to brief the children on what will be happening and why it happens. First, I explained how an eclipse occurs. They seemed very interested in this. I told them about partial eclipses and total eclipses and we filled in the above worksheet which I downloaded from the twinkl website.
Next, we made some solar eclipse artwork. This piece of art aims to capture the magnificence of the sun's corona. It is very simple to do. Simply take some black card or paper, a circular piece of card and some chalks in colours such as red, orange and yellow.
Stick the circular piece of card in the middle of the black paper using blu tac. Then, use the chalks to draw the corona round the edge of the sun. Use your fingers to smudge the chalk to create an amazing effect. When you have finished, remove the circular card.
Here is D's finished piece, I think it looks really effective!
This is R's artwork.
Next,, the kids asked to do some painting so I thought we could paint the different types of eclipses. I got some white paper and drew two circles onto it. Then, the children used orange and black paint to paint a partial eclipse and a total eclipse.
Here they are getting stuck in.
They were using orange and black paint.
Here is D's finished work. She really enjoyed doing this and I believe it has helped her to understand what an eclipse is.
R got bored quite quickly so this is all he did. He did, however, help me draw the circles.
Have you done anything to prepare for the upcoming solar eclipse?