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Lesson Plan #:AELP-SPA0016
Author: Meridene Grant
Endorsed by: These lesson plans are the result of the work of the teachers who have attended the Columbia Education Center’s Summer Workshop. CEC is a consortium of teacher from 14 western states dedicated to improving the quality of education in the rural, western, United States, and particularly the quality of math and science Education. CEC uses Big Sky Telegraph as the hub of their telecommunications network that allows the participating teachers to stay in contact with their trainers and peers that they have met at the Workshops. Date: May 1994

Grade Level(s): 1, 2


  • Science/Space Sciences

Overview: When a month has two full moons, the second moon is sometimes referred to as a Blue Moon.


The students will demonstrate an understanding of moon features by creating an art/writing project about the moon.


  • white paper (8 1/2 x 11 (2 sheets per child)
  • circle patterns (about 7 in diameter)
  • white glue in squeeze bottles
  • watercolors
  • brushes
  • pencils
  • scissors
  • books and pictures about the moon
  • book – The Nightgown of the Sullen Moon
  • Activities and Procedures:

    Part 1: Moon Story

    Read a picture book about the moon to the class. An excellent choice for this activity would be the book, The Nightgown of the Sullen Moon, in which the moon is painted in blues, greens, and purples. If this book is not available, choose another favorite. Explain to the class that there is a full moon every month. Show the class a picture of a full moon from the story you read. Tell the class that occasionally a month will have two full moons and the second full moon is call a blue moon. Tell the class that they will be making an art/writing project about the moon.

    Part 2: Watercolor Paintings

    To demonstrate the watercoloring of the blue moon, ask the students to gather around your workspace table. Place the circle pattern in the center of the white paper and trace around it with a pencil to make the outline of the moon. Draw five or seven crater outlines inside the moon outline. Apply a heavy bead of white glue on top of the crater outlines. Stop the demonstration and instruct students to trace their moon circles and to outline their craters with glue. When everyone has completed the glue outlining and the glue is partially set, resume the demonstration. Limit watercolors to shades of green, blue, and purple. Paint the inside of the craters first with a dark shade of one of the above colors. Use watered-down solutions of the other two colors to wash across the face of the moon so it has a hazy appearance. Let students complete their paintings in the same manner. When painting are completely dry, they can be cut out along the outside line.

    Part 3: Writing Moon Facts

    Discuss physical features of the moon with the class. List these ideas on the board as they are presented. An effective way to do this would be to divide the class into small groups and assign each group to find several facts about the moon from resource books. When all ideas are on the board, direct the students to use the pattern to trace and cut out another circle of paper of the same size. Show them how to begin writing facts about the moon along the edge of the circle, turning the circle every few words and spiraling toward the center until they run out of facts or space. Facts to include:

  • The moon is smaller than the Earth.
  • The moon has no light of its own, but reflects light from the sun.
  • There is no air or water on the moon.
  • The moon’s surface is dusty and brown in color.
  • There are many craters on the moon.
  • To complete projects, glue written and painted circles back to back.