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What does the shadow know? If it’s a shadow across a sundial, it knows the time of day. Experiment with shadows and timekeeping with Crayola Giant Sidewalk Chalk.
Sundials have been used since ancient times to mark the time. They were even used to check the accuracy of early mechanical clocks. Sundials work because as the Earth rotates around the sun, the sun’s place in the sky changes. Students research about sundials and their operation.
You will find that shadows are created by a central stick or triangle set perpendicular to the base plate of a sundial. This "shadow stick" is called a gnomon.
Bring students to a large, safe outdoor area to draw a human sundial, which will give students an idea of how a sundial works. Make sure it is in full sun.
Using Crayola Giant Sidewalk Chalk, draw a large circle. Make evenly spaced marks around the outside edge for each hour of the day. Figure out where the center of the circle is located and mark that, too.
Students stand on the center mark in the morning when the sun is out. A classmate traces where the shadow falls on the sundial. Inside the traced shadow, write the time of day. Keep recording the results throughout the day to see how the shadow moves around the sundial. Use different colors for each recorded time.
Ask students how accurate they think their sundial is? Why?
People around the world give thanks for their food. Celebrate a harvest of pineapples, pumpkins, or pomegranates-and sho
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