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Investigation 2 – PostLab








Complete the Focus Question in your SDR then discuss it as a class.



Complete the Analysis Questions in your SDR then discuss them as a class.

  • Describe the movement of the Sun, Moon, and Earth in our solar system. 

Note: Questions marked with a triangle (∆) are included to enrich your understanding. These questions do not appear in your SDR  but should be used as additional discussion points during the PostLab.Like most models, the simulation that your group performed in the lab was not a perfect representation of the Earth, Moon, and Sun. Discuss the following question in your group.

  • ∆ What are some ways in which the model did not accurately represent the relationships between the Earth, Moon, and Sun? 
  • ∆ Did the simulation of the Moon’s phases have value to you in spite of the imperfections of the model? 

Recall the first part of the simulation when the student representing the Earth rotated on the stool as the Moon revolved around the Earth.

  • ∆ Based on your model, how many days does it take for the Moon to complete one revolution around the Earth? 
  • What allows us to observe the different phases of the Moon from the Earth?
  • ∆ What caused the illumination of the Moon? 
  • During one complete revolution of the Earth, how much of the Moon, or how many of the Moon’s surfaces, were you able to see? 

Your simulation modeled four of the Moon’s phases. These phases are known as the New Moon, First Quarter, Full Moon, and Last Quarter (or Third Quarter).

  • ∆ What phase of the Moon should be assigned to each of the four positions in your simulation?
  • ∆ What causes the phases of the moon? 
  • What phases did you see between Tape A and Tape B positions? Draw and explain your answer. 
  • What phases did you see between Tape C and Tape D positions? Draw and explain your answer. 
  • In what phase is the Moon not visible?
  • How many days are between the First Quarter and Full Moon phases? 


Based on your model, why do you think we observe different phases of the Moon from the Earth?