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Lunar Eclipses

Lunar Eclipses

Introduction: Have you ever seen a red moon? It's a sight that usually happens only a couple times a year. What causes a red moon? The ancient Incan people believed that when the Moon turned blood-red, it was being eaten by a jaguar. Today we understand that the Moon turns red as it passes through Earth's shadow, or umbra, during a lunar eclipse. For a total lunar eclipse to happen, Earth, the Sun, and the Moon must align precisely. Because it does not happen very often, the sight of a lunar eclipse is as marvelous today as when the ancient Incan people gazed upon it hundreds of years ago.

Directions for This Lesson: In this lesson, you will learn about lunar eclipses. First, try the practice questions to determine what you already know about lunar eclipses. Then, watch the video lesson to learn more about lunar eclipses. Finally, apply what you learned in the activity and practice sections. 


Required Video:

Explore what happens during a lunar eclipse by changing variables with this interactive. Be sure to select "Lunar Eclipse" before starting. Visit here to find when to watch for the next lunar eclipse. 

Practice what you have learned by completing the post-lesson worksheets.

Additional Resources: