Moon Phases Activity for Kids

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My kids and I love the moon and love to study the different moon phases.  I have a little moon phases activity you can use to teach them to your kids. I hope you’ll add this activity to your lesson plans! It’s great for any grade.

moon phases activity for Kids

When I was a kid, I would look out the window at night while driving and watch the moon. I remember always saying that it felt like the moon was following me. So, we started calling it “My Friend the Moon”.  I think that has always made the moon a special thing to me. I dreamed of one day walking on the moon. Ok, I still do! Did you know this year is the 50th anniversary of Neil Armstrong walking on the moon?  Cool, right?

Moon Books for Kids

I have two moon books books to share with you that are greatly loved around here:

If You Decide to Go to the Moon by Faith McNulty

Kitten’s First Full Moon by Kevin Henkes.

Both of these are fun and great to read to kids of all ages! And they go perfectly with the moon phases activity I am sharing today.

What are your favorite books about the moon?

Moon Phases Activity for Kids

Now, on to the Moon Phases Activity!

This is a super simple thing to create and it shows just how a moon looks at the different phases of its orbit. I made it into a printable to make it simple for you to use. You can get the template in my shop!

moon phases activity


To make this moon phase slider, print out the template. Cut out the circle template of the moon’s surface from the first page. Glue the first and second page together along the top and bottom edge. Trim off the side edges to make it smaller.

moon phase activity for kids

Use the template page to make the slider out of black paper. Once the glue is dry, insert the slider in-between the two pages and use it to make the different moon phases.

moon phase slider

About the Moon Phases:

The moon goes through each of these phases in a calendar month. The moon changes daily because the moon orbits the earth as the earth orbits the sun. The moonlight we see is just a reflection of the sunlight. It does not create its own light.

Did you know we only ever see half of the moon?  There is a portion of the moon that always faces away from the earth.  When the sun shines on the other side of the moon, this is when we have the new moon phase. It just appears to be dark to us.

There are 12 different phases of the moon cycle:

  • New Moon
  • Waxing Crescent Moon
  • First Quarter Moon
  • Waxing Gibbous Moon (or a half moon)
  • Full Moon
  • Waning Gibbous Moon (also a half moon)
  • Last Quarter Moon
  • Waning Crescent Moon



Isn’t it fun?!  We love it!

Download it here:


See More of My Space Science Activities:

Shooting Star Spinner
Space Lesson
Straw Rocket
Constellation Cards


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  1. I’m so grateful for the freebies but this doesn’t really show the moon phases. I didn’t even realize it until I had finished the craft. I think maybe the name should be changed. This isn’t a mean comment, just an observation.

  2. I don’t see where the moon phase printable is? Also reading the comment about the eclipse you could make the black slider paper a square and use the straight edge for the 1/2 moon phase.

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