painted and foil-covered circles on a ribbon in the order of the phases of the moon below a moon phases template


Learn About The Moon’s Phases With This Wall-Hanging Craft

Mar 1, 2021

Watching the moon at night when the sky is clear is one of our favourite activities, any time of year. We love looking at all the phases of the moon, but especially when it's full and at its brightest.

The phases of the moon are the different ways it looks from Earth over about a month. This craft will help your child visualize how the moon moves in its eight phases.

  1. New moon — the moon is dark, so not visible.
  2. Waxing crescent — the moon starts growing, since a slice is visible.
  3. First quarter — the moon looks like a semicircle, since half is visible.
  4. Waxing gibbous — the moon continues growing, more than half is visible.
  5. Full moon — we see the entire circle of the moon lit up.
  6. Waning gibbous — the moon starts shrinking.
  7. Third quarter — again, only half a circle is visible.
  8. Waning crescent — the moon is about to go dark and disappear.

everything you'll need to make your moon phases craft

What You'll Need:

  • cereal box or card stock
  • mug, cup or glass 
  • black and white acrylic paint
  • paint brushes
  • aluminum foil 
  • glue stick (school glue will work too)
  • pencil
  • scissors
  • piece of string or ribbon
  • glue gun
  • moon phases template

Note: If you don’t want to use aluminum foil, you can just paint your cereal box or card stock. And if you don’t have a printer, you can use the template as a guideline on your screen.

How about a paper towel palm tree to sit under your moons? Find that fun and simple craft here.

How It's Made:

Take your cereal box and open it up so it lies flat. Use your cup or mug and trace out eight circles with your pencil. When those pieces are drawn out, cut out your circles. Circles are tricky to cut out, so be careful and go slow for precision.

tracing circles on the cereal box or card stock to cut out

Next, take your aluminum foil and crumple it up and then lay it flat. This will make a crater-like texture for your moon phases. Take your cereal-box circles, glue them on top of the foil and cut them out.

gluing cereal box circles onto the crumpled aluminum foil and cutting them out so you have foil-covered circles

Use the moon phases template as a guide and use your pencil to indent the foil with the crescent shapes of the moon.

indenting crescent shapes onto the foil-covered circles to match the phases of the moon

Using the template as a guide, paint on the moon phases in black. Feel free to leave the moons silver for an intergalactic feel. Or once the black paint is dry, use white paint for the remaining sliver of moon on each.

painting the foil-covered circles in black and white based on the moon phases

Spread your moons out in order (refer to the template if you forget), beginning with the new moon. Use the glue gun and put a dab of glue behind each moon, and attach them to a string or ribbon. 

moons (painted and foil-covered circles) attached to a ribbon in order of their phases and hung up

When your moons are glued down, hang them on a wall vertically or horizontally. We chose to hang ours close to a window, and wrote the moon phases on the back for reference when we are looking out at the moon at night.

young child holding the moon phases template below the moon phases hanging on the wall behind him

Article Author Vanessa Magic
Vanessa Magic

Read more from Vanessa here.

Vanessa Magic is a writer, award-winning costume designer and musician. She loves making up magical stories and singing songs to her adorable four-year-old son. When she is not in mama mode, she facilitates workshops with Inclusive Stylist Toronto, an initiative she co-founded that encourages inclusivity within the film industry for costume design and wardrobe styling. Currently, she is a participant in the BIPOC Film and TV Kids writing workshop where she is developing an afro-futurist science-based show.

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