Here we present a significant upgrade to the first in
a series of innovative, experiential lessons we call Kinesthetic
Astronomy. The Sky Time lesson reconnects students with
the astronomical meaning of the day, year, and seasons.
Like all Kinesthetic Astronomy lessons, it teaches basic
astronomical concepts through choreographed bodily movements
and positions that provide educational sensory experiences.
Kinesthetic Astronomy lessons are science-rich
and fun. They are intended for sixth graders up through
adult learners in both formal and informal educational
settings. They emphasize astronomical concepts and phenomenon
that people can readily encounter in their "everyday" lives
such as time, seasons, and sky motions of the Sun, Moon,
stars, and planets.
Kinesthetic Astronomy lesson plans are
fully aligned with national science education standards,
both in content and instructional practice. Our lessons
offer a complete learning cycle with written assessment
opportunities now embedded throughout the lesson.
Field testing with non-science undergraduates,
middle school science teachers and students, Junior girl
scouts, museum education staff, and outdoor educators
has been providing evidence that kinesthetic astronomy
techniques allow learners to achieve a good intuitive
grasp of concepts that are much more difficult to learn
in more conventional ways such as via textbooks or even
We hope you will enjoy our efforts to
make the Sky Time lesson more accessible and useful to
you and your students.
Lesson 1: Sky Time LESSON DESCRIPTION:
Modern everyday association with time involves
watches, clocks, and calendars instead of the astronomical
motions that were the original bases for time keeping.
Through a series of simple body movements, students gain
insight into the relationship between time and astronomical
motions of Earth (rotation about its axis, and orbit
around the Sun), and also about how these motions influence
what we see in the sky at various times of the day and
year. The lesson can be applied to understand the times
of day and year on other planets (e.g. Mars). The lesson
can be taught with or without an emphasis on the reasons
for seasons, but in any case is an excellent set-up for
Middle school ages and up.
An indoor or outdoor space large enough for
your students to form a circle with arms outstretched
to their sides. For a class of 25-30 students one needs
a space whose size is about half a basketball court.
This lesson is best with at least eight students participating.
Download the Sky Time Lesson
3, August 2004)
Proceed to Download Page. Note: to read these files you will need the
free Adobe Acrobat Reader.