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Vocabulary List

Chapter 1-3 Earth, Moon & Sun

Pages 20-29

1) What does “phase of the moon” mean?  

It is the different shapes of the moon we see from Earth as the moon makes a complete revolution around Earth.

 

2) Waxing:  

When the portion of the moon we see is growing (more light) - In the North East waxing moon phases are always on the right.

 

3) Waning:  

When the portion of the moon we see is shrinking (less light) - In the North East waning moon phases are always on the left.

 

4) Crescent:  

This is when the moon's shape resembles a crescent roll - a slice

 

5) Gibbous:  

This is when the moon's shape resembles an oval

 

6) Solar Eclipse:  

When the moon passes directly between Earth and the Sun. The sunlight is blocked from part of the Earth. Earth is in the Moon's shadow. Solar eclipses occur during the New Moon Phase

 

7) Lunar Eclipse:  

A lunar eclipse occurs at a Full Moon when Earth is directly between the moon and the sun. Earth blocks sunlight from reaching the moon. The moon is in Earth's shadow.

 

8) Umbra:  

The darkest inner shadow during a total eclipse

 

9) Penumbra:  

The lighter outer shadow during a partial eclipse

 

10) Tides:  

The rise and fall of the oceans caused by the moon's gravitational pull on Earth. They occur every 12.5 hours. Every 6 hours we have a high tide and then a low tide. So every day we have two high tides and two low tides in a given spot on Earth.

 

11) Spring tides:  

These are the when we have the greatest difference between high tides and low tides. This occurs at the full and new moon phases because the sun's gravitational pull adds to the force that the moon's gravity is exerting and we have the greatest difference between high and low tide.

 

12) Neap tides:  

This occurs at the first and last quarter moon phases because the sun's gravitational pull is at right angles to the to the force that the moon's gravity is exerting and we have the smallest difference between high and low tide.

Lowest high tides and Highest low tides take place

 

13) How is the relative motion of the Earth, the moon, and the sun related to the phases of the moon?  

The revolution of the moon around the Earth causes different amount of Sunlight from reflecting off of it. This causes us to see the moon appear differently to us on Earth. This is because the Sun, moon and Earth are in different positions during their revolutions.
 

How is it related to eclipses?  

Eclipses are caused when one object in space blocks sunlight from another object. While the Earth is revolving around the sun, the moon is revolving around Earth. When the moon's shadow falls on Earth we are experiencing a solar eclipse. When Earth's shadow falls on the moon the moon is having a lunar eclipse.

 

14) When would you be able to see a lunar eclipse?  

You can see a lunar eclipse during the full moon phase, when the Earth is blocking sunlight from hitting the moon. A total lunar eclipse can be see from anywhere on Earth.
 

15) When would you be able to see a solar eclipse?  

You can see a solar eclipse during the new moon phase. This occurs when the moon is directly between the Sun and the Earth. Most months the moon is higher in the sky so the sunlight is not totally blocked, however during a solar eclipse they are directly in line. A total eclipse can only be seen on the part of the Earth that is in full shadow (the umbra)
 

16) How does the moon affect tides on the Earth?
The moon's gravitational pull causes the tides to occur on Earth.