Doppler 9&10 STEM: Phases of the Moon

Teachers & Parents:

Does your kid have a science question?

Have them send us a video with a weather question to!

Today we talk about the moon phases. Over the next month you’ll be able to follow the moon cycle and sun when looking at the moon you’ll be able to tell which is which.

We will take you through the phases and talk about a cool astronomical phenomenon that occurs in March.

The first phase of the moon cycle is a New Moon. A full cycle goes New Moon to New Moon.

New Moon: The moon is not light up or illuminated.Pexels Dom Le Roy 3567673

Waxing Crescent: The waxing phase meaning becoming lit or illuminated. Crescent for the crescent shape it appears as. Moon is becoming illuminated from right to left. More dark than light.

First Quarter: The moon is half illuminated. It is lit on the right side and dark on the left side. It is called the first quarter because it is the point at which the moon is a quarter of the way through its cycle.

Waxing Gibbous: Continues to become more illuminated. Almost a full moon, only a sliver left of darkness.

Full Moon: when the moon is fully Illuminated.

The Worm Moon, March 28th – In March it is special though. The first full moon in March is considered the Worm Moon. It is called the worm moon because in March the ground typically starts thawing from winter. This allows worms to start to come out to the ground. So once we get rain in late March look for them.

Waning Gibbous: The moon has passed its full illumination and is getting darker. The moon now gets darker from right to left. Dark is on the right, it is still mostly lit on the right side.

Last Quarter: The second half-moon. This time the moon will be illuminated on the left side and dark on the right. It is the last quarter moon because it is in the last quarter of its cycle.

Waning Crescent: This phase is the last sliver of light on the left side of the moon, the moon is barely illuminated in the crescent shape. This is the last phase before the new cycle begins.

New Moon: There you have it, we are back to a new moon. That is what the cycles look like. Always remember: “If the light is on the right, it’s getting bright”.

Also, check out the equinox experiment from a few months back. It shows you how the sun illuminates the earth and seasons are created. You can use a similar concept with the moonlight as well.


If your kiddos try this experiment, send us photos of you and your experiment and you might get to see it during weather on The Four on Tuesdays!

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