Wow! A solar eclipse is coming to the United States on August 21st. What a great learning opportunity for children. Over the next few weeks, we will be suggesting a few activities that are meaningful and will guide children as they understand this unique occurrence.
But before we learn more about the sun and its importance to life on Earth, a few safety rules are necessary. Let’s start with those.
Begin by asking children to observe (safely) the sky. Remind them that they should never look directly at the sun. This is one of those direct instruction types of safety rules. In other words, be clear! Show pictures of people wearing sunglasses and then ask children to verbalize for themselves why sunglasses are important along with the idea that looking directly at the sun is never a good idea. They could create a paper plate depiction of themselves, wearing sunglasses as a reminder of this safety rule.
You can help children understand (and see for themselves!) the importance of sunscreen by engaging them in a simple experiment. After this, you may never have those squirmy children who balk when the sunblock appears. Use a black piece of construction paper. Take a small amount of sunscreen and gently rub it on one side of the paper. I like to have children do this. Then leave the paper in the sun for a few hours. When you return, ask children to explain what happened to the side that did not have the sunblock (it faded!) while the side with the sunblock did not. Ask children to draw conclusions about another sun safety rule!
Stay tuned for more as we approach the solar eclipse!
NAEYC - 2.G. & 2.K.03 & 04.
Head Start - I.A. & B.,XI.A. & B.