Modeling Day and Night

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In this activity (on page 1 of the PDF), learners make a "mini-globe" to investigate the causes of day and night on our planet. This is an introductory activity in a guide related to the science of sleep and daily rhythms. This lesson guide includes background information, information about cooperative learning, setup and management tips, extensions and handouts.

Quick Guide

Preparation Time:
10 to 30 minutes

Learning Time:
30 to 45 minutes

Estimated Materials Cost:
$1 - $5 per group of students

Age Range:
Ages 8 - 14

Resource Types:
Activity, Experiment/Lab Activity, Lesson/Lesson Plan, Model, Simulation


Materials List (per group of students)

  • Large paper clip
  • Table tennis (ping-pong) ball or round foam ball (diameter of 1/2 in.)
  • Colored markers or pencils
  • Sheet of cardstock (8.5 in. x 11 in.)
  • 2-3 strips of masking or clear tape
  • Copy of student sheets (pp. 4-5)


  • Earth and Space Science
    • Earth Structure
    • Earth, Moon and Sun
      • Days
  • Life Sciences
    • Human Body
  • Mathematics
    • Data Analysis and Probability
      • Data Analysis
      • Data Collection
      • Data Representation
    • Geometry
      • Solid Geometry
  • Physical Sciences
    • Motion and Forces
      • Rotation Motion
  • The Nature of Science
    • The Scientific Process
      • Conducting Investigations
      • Gathering Data
      • Formulating Explanations
      • Communicating Results

Informal Categories

  • Model Building


To use this activity, learners need to:

  • see
  • read
  • touch

Learning styles supported:

  • Involves teamwork and communication skills
  • Involves hands-on or lab activities


Includes alignment to state and/or national standards:

This resource is part of:

Access Rights:

  • Free access


  • Moreno, Nancy P. ; Tharp, Barbara Z. ; Vogt, Greg L.


  • All rights reserved, Baylor College of Medicine, 2009

Funding Source:

  • NASA, NCC 9-58