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Get kids excited about learning with this easy-to-make lunar eclipse kids’ craft. It’s a great hands-on project that teaches about stargazing.
With movable parts like the sun, moon, and planet Earth, this lunar eclipse craft makes learning fun! Read on to find out how to make this moveable shoebox craft that illustrates what happens during a lunar eclipse.
What is a lunar eclipse?
A lunar eclipse occurs when the Earth gets between the sun and the moon. When the eclipse happens, it will be nighttime for part of the world and daytime for many others!
Why do we see a lunar lit sky during a lunar eclipse?
The Earth casts a shadow onto the surface of the Moon creating what astronomers call “a penumbra”. The light from all around us can still reach through so there isn’t total darkness like during totality.
How to make a lunar eclipse craft
- Cardboard box- a shoebox works as well
- PDF Template
- Construction paper– you’ll need black, green, blue, yellow, orange, and white
- Popsicle sticks
- Rubber bands
- Black paint
- Paintbrush– you can also use inexpensive foam brushes for your project. They’re easy to clean up or dispose of if they get messed up.
For this project, you’re going to want a regular box about the size of a shoebox.
1. To prepare the cardboard box, open up the folds of the box until it lays flat.
2. Next, trim the box flaps leaving about an inch of the flap for the border on all four sides, and cut out a square window from the middle.
If you’d prefer to use a shoebox instead, cut a square out of the lid leaving a 1″ border around the edge.
3. Paint the background (the opposite side of the box than the opening) black using black paint and a foam brush or paintbrush, depending on what you have.
You can also glue black craft paper instead of paint. Glue the paper onto the back of the box and trim the excess.
4. Carefully cut 3 horizontal slits on the top portion of the box that are parallel, running the length of the box, but not reaching the edges.
5. Then fold the box back to its original shape and cover the edges with yellow construction paper or paint if you prefer.
6. Cut 8 white construction paper starts, using paper star templates. Use the stars to decorate the corners of the front of the box. Then glue the other 4 stars onto the black background.
7. Use the PDF template to cut out the Earth, moon, and sun. Use a marker pen to draw some details on the moon.
8. Glue the green pieces on the Earth and then glue the orange sun rays on the back of the yellow sun.
9. Take 3 popsicle sticks, and glue them on the back of Earth, the sun, and the moon.
10. Wrap rubber bands on the ends of the popsicle sticks to keep them from falling through the slits you cut in the previous step.
11. Put the moon, earth, and sun, through the slits on top of the box (in that order from back to front) to finish your craft.
Now you have a working moveable lunar eclipse model for learning about how this cool event happens!
I hope you enjoyed this lunar eclipse craft. It is quick to make from things you probably have already in your house. The hands-on experience will help kids love what they are learning during homeschool lunar eclipse lesson plans or as a fun weekend project!
- Take a cardboard box and open up the folds of the box.
- Cut out a square window from the middle part of the box. Leave at least a 1-inch border on all four sides
- Paint the side of the window without the square cut-out using black paint. You can also glue black construction paper instead.
- Cut 3 horizontal slits in the middle of the top portion of the box.
- Fold the box back to its original shape. Decorate the corners using paper stars (from the templates).
- Glue some stars on the black background.
- Use the PDF template to cut out the earth, moon, and sun.
- Use a pencil or marker to draw some details on the moon, glue the green pieces on the earth, then glue the orange rays on the back of the yellow sun.
- Take 3 popsicle sticks, and then glue them on the back.
- Wrap rubber bands on the ends of the popsicle sticks.
- Put the moon, earth, and sun (in that order from back to front) through the slits on top of the box to finish your craft.