Lunar and Planetary Institute

Moon Phases

Activity: Share the Story

Children retell the story of The Girl Who Married the Moon to reinforce their understanding of why we see different phases of our Moon.

The Activity
Invite the children to retell the Native American and science stories. Help them begin prompt them through the discussion. Help the children remember incidents that are left out or out of order.

  • Why did the girls go to the beach every night?
  • What did they tell the Moon when he visited?
  • What did the Moon say to the girls?
  • What happened as the Moon was taking the girls away?
  • What was it like living with the Moon?
  • What happened next?
  • What did the Moon change and, according to the Native American legend, why do we have phases?

You may wish to keep a list of events as the children build the story. Follow the Native American narrative with a discussion of the science story in the same way. Have the children connect the events in the Native American story to the events in the science story where they can.


You may want to have the children reenact the story as a play, taking turns as the narrator. They can create songs or dance the stories. Invite them to illustrate the stories using craft materials (see the ”Drawing Conclusions” activity).

More Activities


Last updated
January 9, 2007


Ages 5 and up

How Long?

What's Needed?

• Poster Paper
• Markers

Connections to the National Science Standard(s)

Standards A&D (grades K–4): Understand and communicate the explanation (this communication might be spoken or written) of the pattern of move-ment of the Moon across the sky, as well as the observable cycle of changes in the Moon's shape within a month.

Standards A&D (grades 5–8): Understand and communicate the scientific explanation of how objects in the solar system have regular and predictable motion that explains such phenomena as the phases of the Moon and eclipses.