Beacon Lesson Plan Library
Eight Stars in the Night Sky
Bay District Schools
Can you count eight stars in the night sky? This eighth lesson from the unit, Sky High Counting continues students' exploration of the day and night skies. A page for the number 8 is added to students' counting books.
The student uses titles and illustrations to make oral predictions.
The student dictates messages (for example, news, stories).
The student relates characters and simple events in a read-aloud book to own life.
The student counts up to 10 or more objects using verbal names and one-to-one correspondence.
The student uses numbers and pictures to describe how many objects are in a set (to 10 or more).
The student uses sets of concrete materials to represent quantities, to 10 or more, given in verbal or written form.
The student knows that the sky looks different during the day than it does at night.
The student knows that the position of the Sun in the sky appears to change during the day.
The student knows some of the objects seen in the night sky (for example, stars, Moon).
-Crews, Donald. [Ten Black Dots]. New York. Scholastic. 1968.
-Morozumi, Atsuko. [One Gorilla]. New York. Farrar, Straus & Giroux. 1990.
-Butler, Daphne. [First Look at Day and Night]. Milwaukee. Gareth Stevens Children’s Books. 1991.
-One copy of “Moving Sun Rhyme” from the associated file from the lesson plan Three Bears and Three Goats in the Morning Sun
-Student Web Lesson, Sunrise, Sunset (see Weblinks)
-Eight quarter-size, yellow, construction paper or sticker dots per student
-Yellow construction paper cutout of the numeral 8, one per student plus one for the teacher’s number wall card (see associated file from lesson plan One Sun, One Moon)
-Copy of the student worksheet from associated file – one per student
-Transparency of What Time Is It? from the associated file from the lesson plan Seven Quacks Me Up
-Copy of the formative assessment checklist previously used with this unit – one per student
-One sheet of chart paper
-Various colors of markers for writing on chart paper
-Eight large yellow stars traced from the pattern for the number wall cards (see associated file for lesson plan One Sun, One Moon)
-One 12 x 16 sheet of dark blue construction paper to make number wall cards
-One sheet per student of dark blue, 6 x 8 construction paper
-Pencils – one per student
-A set of multiple colors of crayons and/or markers per student or group
-One one-gallon plastic bag per student (previously used with this unit)
-One large ball (kickball size or larger – a beach ball is great)
-A copy of the “Earth Turns” rhyme from the associated file
1. Obtain and preview the book [Ten Black Dots]. This book is the basis for the unit and will be used daily.
2. Obtain and preview the book [One Gorilla].
3. Obtain and preview the book [First Look at Day and Night]
4. Preview the Student Web Lesson, Sunrise, Sunset from the Weblinks section. Because of the audio attached, the download time for each page is long. To reduce this waiting time, download each page prior to the students using the story. The pages will be stored on your computer for quick and easy student access as long as your Internet access is maintained. When you close your Internet access or shut down your computer, you will need to preload this lesson again.
5. Locate your copy of “Moving Sun Rhyme” from the associated file of the lesson plan Three Bears and Three Goats in the Morning Sun.
6. Cut or obtain 8 quarter-size, yellow, construction paper or sticker dots per student. (The Ellison cutouts work great.)
7. Cut a yellow construction paper cutout of the numeral 8 per student plus one for the teacher’s number wall card. Patterns are available from the associated file from the lesson plan One Sun, One Moon. (The Ellison cutouts work great.)
8. Download, print, and duplicate student worksheet from associated file – one per student.
9. Locate the formative assessment checklist previously used with this unit.
10. Locate 1 sheet of chart paper.
11. Locate various colors of markers for writing on chart paper.
12. Create 8 large yellow stars traced from the pattern in the associated file for lesson plan One Sun, One Moon for the number wall cards. (The Ellison cutouts work great.)
13. Locate one 12 x 16 sheet of dark blue construction paper to make number wall cards. On this dark blue paper, glue eight large yellow stars and a yellow cutout of the numeral 8.
14. Locate one sheet per student of dark blue, 6 x 8 construction paper.
15. Locate pencils, one per student.
16. Locate a set of multiple colors of crayons and/or markers per student or group of students.
17. Have gallon bags used previously hanging in the room and available for use today.
18. All books used in the unit that this lesson is part of should be obtainable from various school libraries in your district. To locate the books, use the Sunlink Web site from the Web Links section of this lesson plan. Ask your media specialist to request the books for you from the various libraries. I have found all media specialists to willingly share their books.
19. Locate the transparency of What Time Is It? from associated file to the lesson plan Seven Quacks Me Up.
20. Download and print a copy of the “Earth Turns” rhyme from the associated file.
21. Locate one large ball. A beach ball works great. The ball should be at least kickball size or larger.
Note: This is lesson plan number eight of ten that makes up the unit, Sky High Counting, available from the link in the top corner or the Extensions section of this lesson plan. This integrated lesson plan includes reading, writing, mathematics, and science.
1. Draw students’ attention to the wall chart for the numbers that were previously presented. Orally review the lines of the numerals by having students trace them in the air as you verbally describe them. Ask a student to count the number of stars on the chart as you touch the stars to demonstrate one-to-one correspondence. Ask whether the blue paper is supposed to be the day sky or night sky and encourage students to explain how they know.
2. Show the book, [One Gorilla]. Ask for predictions of what the book may be about. Ask how the students know that it might be about animals.
3. Read the title to the students. Ask for further predictions about the contents of the book now that the title is known. Ask about where the story might take place. Ask how the students arrived at the prediction. Encourage them to realize that it is the title and illustrations that help them predict.
4. Read the book, [One Gorilla]. As you read, demonstrate one-to-one correspondence while counting the various animals in the story.
5. Ask students to relate the book to their own experiences of catching butterflies, pets they may own, animals they have seen in their yards, etc. Ask guiding questions about these experiences that help students relate the illustrations to their own lives.
6. As each page is read, have the students predict what might be on the following page. Ask why they made that prediction. They can predict what number will be displayed, what animals may be used, or what the gorilla may be doing.
7. Display the number wall card for the number 8. Ask students which number will be our special visitor today.
8. Trace the cutout numeral on the chart with your finger. As you do, talk to the students about the shape of the numeral eight. Verbally trace the eight by modeling and saying, “Trace around, cross over and go around the other side. Now trace around, cross over and go back up to where you started.” Have the students trace the eight in the air with their fingers.
9. Touch the yellow stars on the wall chart and say the number words “one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight” demonstrating one-to-one correspondence.
10. Make the relation with the numeral eight and the eight stars obvious. Touch the stars and say “one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight.” Then, trace the numeral and say “eight.” Remind students that the numeral tells how many stars are on the paper.
11. Hang the wall card on the wall high enough that students can see it but low enough that they can touch the stars.
12. Display the chart paper. Remind students that their homework last night was to ask their parents what might have eight parts. Make a list as related by the students. The list should be words and drawings if possible. As the students respond, give formative feedback such as, “Yes, an octopus has eight legs.” or “No, ladybugs have six legs. How many legs do you think a spider has?” When students have had the opportunity to add as many answers as possible to the list, hang the list under the wall chart for the number 8. Eight is a hard number to make associations with, so this list may be very short and include eight spider legs and eight octopus legs.
13. Pass out the worksheet from the associated file. Have students write their names on the papers. Using their fingers, have the students trace the numeral 8 on the paper. As students are tracing with their fingers, verbally describe the procedure saying, “Trace around, cross over and go around the other side. Now trace around, cross over and go back up to where you started.” Have students pick up their pencils and trace the numeral 8 using their pencils. Verbally describe the tracing again.
14. Ask students how many stars will be colored today. How do they know? How many colors may they use? How do they know? They can be colored any way the student chooses as long as they only use eight colors and only color eight stars. The purpose is to be sure the student understands the concept of eight.
15. Collect the papers. Use the papers to formatively assess individual student’s knowledge of the numeral and number eight. Mark students' ability on the formative assessment records sheet. Remember that you are assessing whether students adequately demonstrate their knowledge of counting to eight, not their coloring or tracing abilities.
16. Begin giving Summative Assessment #3, Counting the Stars, to those students ready to demonstrate the ability to master the three math standards targeted in this unit/lesson.
Reading (read-aloud) –
Note: While asking questions and requesting student input, be sure all students have the opportunity to demonstrate knowledge, share their predictions, and abilities, etc. Don’t allow the more vocal students to dominate.
17. Show the book, [First Look at Day and Night].
18. Look at the cover of the book. Ask if students can predict what the title might be. Remind students to predict by using what they see. Ask guiding questions such as: Is this a day sky, night sky? Is the sun coming up or going down? Why do they think so? (Sunrise and sunset look similar. The only constant is that the sun rises in the east and sets in the west.) After students predict the title using the illustration, read the title to them.
19. Now that students know the title of the book, ask them to predict what they think the book will be about. Give formative feedback as to whether they are using the title and illustration to make their prediction and whether the prediction is realistic. Possible feedback might be, “Looking at the picture, we see a sunset, but the title has the words ‘day and night’.” Is a sunset part of the day or night skies? Think about it some more and I’ll come back to you for another guess.” Remember, formative feedback tells why the student is correct and/or guides the student towards the correct answer.
20. Drawing attention to the cover illustration of a sunset, ask students to predict what will come next. Ask them what comes after sunset.
21. Read page 6. Ask if the illustration on page 7 has a day sky or a night sky. Ask for an explanation. Why aren’t many stars seen? Why does it look purple at the bottom of the illustration? Guide students to awareness that the sun has just gone down so some of the light from the sun can still be seen. It is not totally dark night yet.
22. Tell students that many things are happening at night and this book tells about four of them . Ask students to tell some of the things that happen at night. Ask for predictions of what they think the book will tell happens at night. Possible predictions may be that people sleep, animals sleep, hamsters run on their wheels, and parents drive their cars. Give feedback on their predictions as to whether they are logical.
23. Read pages 8 - 15 to the students. Ask students to relate the illustration to their own lives. Do their parents work at night? Have they slept in a car on a trip?
24. Ask if the illustrations have a day sky or a night sky. Ask for an explanation.
25. Show the picture on page 16. Ask students to predict what will happen next. Possible predictions might be that the sun comes up, people wake up, or the sky is not so dark. Give feedback on their predictions as to whether they are logical and whether students used the illustrations to make the prediction.
26. Continue reading pages 17 – 24 that discuss morning. For each page, follow the read, relate to students’ own lives, tell about day sky or night sky, and predict what will come next, procedures that have been established.
27. Pages 25 – 29 are about noon until sunset. For each page, follow the read, relate to students’ own lives, tell about day sky or night sky, and predict what will come next, procedures that have been established.
28. Place the book in a predominant place in the classroom, such as on the chalk tray. Invite students to read the book during their “self selected” reading time.
29. Lead the students in reciting the “Moving Sun Rhyme.” Remember to either do the movements that accompany the rhyme or use the stick suns to represent the movement of the sun.
30. Show the transparency, What Time Is It? Ask various students to explain the apparent movement of the sun across the sky. Give affirmative and corrective formative feedback such as: “Yes, at noon the sun is straight over our head. The our town is turned straight toward the sun.” or “No, the sun is not gone. What did the Earth do so that we can’t see the sun?” Mark the formative assessment checklist.
31. As you review each movement of the sun, have the student point to the sun on the transparency display.
32. Show page 14 of the book, [First Look at Day and Night]. Remind students of how the sun is always in the same place, but the Earth turns.
33. Demonstrate the rotation of the Earth. Place the large ball on the teacher’s desk (or another prominent location in the room where it will not fall). Tell students that the ball is going to be the sun.
34. Select a student. The student must always look straight forward not turning his/her head at all. The student’s face is where we live on the Earth. Place the student with his/her back to the ball (sun). Ask if he/she can see the sun at all. Ask what time of day it is (night).
35. Turn the student ninety degrees so the side of the student is facing the ball. Allow the student to look out of the corner of his/her eyes, but not turn the head. Ask if the student can see the ball (sun). How well can the sun be seen? Ask what time of day it is (morning).
36. Ask the student to turn so that it is noon. After the student turns, ask others if the student is correct. How do they know? If the student is mistaken, allow the student to make the correct turn. Be sure to give affirmative and corrective formative feedback such as: “Right. If it is noon, the sun is straight in front of the Earth. His nose is pointing straight towards the sun.” or “Remember that the sun is straight up over the Earth. How should (student’s name) face if the sun is straight up? Turn again and make the sun straight in front of you.”
37. Repeat procedure #35 for sunset. Now, one student has demonstrated the rotation of the Earth for one day.
38. Repeat procedures #33 – 36 several more times. Select a variety of students to be the Earth.
39. Read the rhyme, “Earth Turns.” As you say the chorus, ”breakfast, lunch, supper, sleep” demonstrate how the Earth turns using the ball for the sun and yourself as the Earth with your face as your home.
40. Select a student to demonstrate the turning of the Earth as you repeat the rhyme. Have the class join in saying the chorus with you as the student turns.
41. Repeat procedure #39 with several students.
42. Repeat procedure #39 with the entire class saying the chorus with you and turning.
43. Students now have a beginning knowledge of the apparent movement of the sun during the day. The Student Web Lesson will help cement this concept into their long-term memory. This interactive Web lesson has audio capabilities to integrate reading and science. The Student Web Lesson can be done individually, but students gain the most from working in pairs as this strategy encourages discussions that assist students in understanding concepts. This Student Web Lesson will be included in the procedures for the next three lesson plans of this unit. Do not try to find time for every student to complete the Web lesson today. This is the fourth of five days to complete the Web lesson.
44. The Student Web Lesson can be found by clicking the link in the preparation section of this lesson plan, or the link from the Weblinks, or the link from the unit plan. Once you have opened the Student Web Lesson, add it to your favorites by clicking the Favorites button, Click Add, then OK.
45. Review the chart of things in the night sky. Ask for anything the students may want to add to the list. Discuss what there might be eight of in the night sky.
46. Remind students that they are creating a counting book somewhat like [Ten Black Dots] using yellow dots.
47. Ask students what today’s page in their counting books will be for. Ask how many yellow dots each student will need for this page.
48. Pass out one piece of dark blue paper to each student. Ask whether this page will be about things in the day sky or night sky. Ask students to explain their answer.
49. Show a container with the yellow dots, and another container with numeral cutouts. Call on groups of students to come get eight dots from the dot container and a numeral 8 from the numeral container. As they get their dots and numerals, have students show you what they have selected as they walk back to their seat. Correct any miscounting or misconceptions as the individuals show you their dots and numerals. Mark your formative assessment checklist.
50. Have students place the dots and numerals on their papers (just place, not glue). Ask several students to share what their dots are going to be and what they are going to draw. Give feedback to help guide students such as, “Yes, if the dots are stars, you can draw the moon, too. The moon is in the night sky, too.” or “No, if the dots are stars, you may not draw a rainbow. A rainbow is not in the night sky.”
51. Remind students that each page must have a story that goes with it. Demonstrate how the story on each page must match the picture on the page.
52. Stories should include the number word “eight”, that this is the night sky, and what the item is in the picture. Model a story about eight clouds such as: “Eight bright stars make a picture of a tree in the dark night sky.” Ask students what would be in the picture for this story.
53. Give examples and non-examples of stories that could be on the page. A non-example might include the story, “Eight Spiders.” Explain that the story must be about the night sky and since spiders are not in the sky, they can’t be in our story.
54. Pass out crayons and/or markers. Have students turn their papers the tall way to do their drawing. (Then the large construction paper cover can be folded to be the front and back of the book.)
55. As students are drawing, they should be thinking about the story that goes with this page. Tell them to be ready to tell you their story as you come to them, and you will write their stories on their pages for them.
56. Assist students with sticking their dots to their paper.
57. As students are drawing, circulate and write students’ stories as they dictate them to you. Remind students that their stories must match their drawings; so only tell you a story about what they are drawing. Guide students to use the words “eight and night sky” in their story. Give formative feedback as to whether their drawings are appropriate for the day sky and whether their stories match their drawings. Mark your formative assessment checklist.
58. Have students store their completed pages in their gallon bags.
Note: This is the last instruction day for all ten of the standards listed. The next two days will be spent doing similar activities in all curriculum areas, however you will be assessing rather than teaching. Be sure to formatively assess all students and correct any problems today. Your formative assessment checklist should be used to guide your formative feedback.
59. Tomorrow you will be learning about the number nine. Ask your parents if they know of anything that has nine parts.
60. Show your parents how the Earth turns to look at the sun. Remember to say, “breakfast, lunch, supper, sleep” as you turn.
Formative assessments are performed throughout the lesson as indicated, with both affirmative and corrective feedback given. A formative assessment checklist is available from the unit plan attached files. See Extensions for a link to the unit plan.
Begin giving Summative Assessment #3, Counting the Stars for the unit, Sky High Counting. The assessment tool is available from the unit plan. See the Extensions section of this lesson plan for the link to the unit. This tool assesses the three math standards taught in this and the previous eight lessons of the unit. Because this is a one-on-one assessment, it will take a couple of days to assess all students. The assessment can be given during center time or in individual conferences.
1. Students can do the Student Web Lesson as a whole group activity using a projector connected to the computer.
2. Students can do the Student Web Lesson in a lab setting.
3. With minor adjustments, this standard (reads and writes numbers to 10) could be added to the unit. This would require additional practice in writing the numerals.
4. Number words can be added to the wall cards, worksheets, and book pages.
5. Zero can be added to the wall cards and book pages.
6. Adult volunteers can help with assembling wall cards, gluing yellow dots and numerals, and taking dictations.
7. ESE modifications may include guiding students’ hands while touching the stars being counted or having students put a mark on rather than color the stars on the worksheet.
8. ESOL modifications may include reading to small groups of students rather than the whole group.
9. If the specific books used in this lesson cannot be located, a book with similar content can be substituted.
10. The Beacon Unit Plan associated with this lesson can be viewed by clicking on the link located at the top of this page or by using the following URL: http://www.beaconlearningcenter.com/search/details.asp?item=2982. Once you select the unit’s link, scroll to the bottom of the unit plan page to find the section, “Associated Files.” This section contains links to the Unit Plan Overview, Diagnostic and Summative Assessments, and other associated files, (if any).
1. The Beacon Learning Center Student Web Lesson, Sunrise, Sunset should be completed by all students.Sunrise, Sunset
2. All books used in this lesson should be obtainable from various school libraries in your district. To locate the books, use the Sunlink Web site. Ask your media specialist to request the books for you from the various libraries. I have found all media specialists to willingly share their books. SunLink