In this activity, students engage in an ongoing investigation to find patterns of sunlight and shadow in a classroom (or any room that gets sunlight) at different times of the day and different times of the year. Students look for repeating patterns, keep a log to describe and sketch observations of when and where certain easily recognized patters appear and turn the room into a solar calendar that may survive into the future for other classes to use. Part 1 of this activity requires occasional note-taking and casual observation over the course of a day. Part 2 requires 30-60 minutes to create the calendar record, then casual observation and note-taking throughout the school year. The lesson plan includes a math extension activity and background information about the Sun Dagger at Chaco Canyon. This activity is the third lesson in the Ancient Eyes Look to the Skies curriculum guide.


  • Mathematics > General

Education Levels:

  • Grade 1
  • Grade 2
  • Grade 3
  • Grade 4
  • Grade 5
  • Grade 6
  • Grade 7
  • Grade 8
  • Grade 9
  • Grade 10
  • Grade 11
  • Grade 12


NSDL,Grade 4,Grade 5,NSDL_SetSpec_ncs-NSDL-COLLECTION-000-003-112-115,Mathematics,History of science,Upper Elementary,The nature of science:The scientific process,Solstices,Earth and space science:Earth, moon and sun:Days,The nature of science:Science and society,Archaeoastronomy,Middle School,oai:nsdl.org:2200/20140407124054820T,Elementary School,History/Policy/Law,Equinoxes,Mathematics:Geometry,Heliophysics,Vocational/Professional Development Education,Mathematics:Measurement,Earth and space science:Earth, moon and sun:Seasons,Geoscience



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