The Moon and its Phases
Because the Moon is fully lit, it often appears to be bigger and closer to the Earth.

The Moon and its Phases

This Science quiz is called 'The Moon and its Phases' and it has been written by teachers to help you if you are studying the subject at middle school. Playing educational quizzes is a fabulous way to learn if you are in the 6th, 7th or 8th grade - aged 11 to 14.

It costs only $12.50 per month to play this quiz and over 3,500 others that help you with your school work. You can subscribe on the page at Join Us

Before we get into the phases of the Moon, let’s first find out what the Moon is. The Moon is a natural satellite. A natural satellite is a celestial body that orbits around another body. In our solar system, there are 173 natural satellites that are currently known. The Moon is Earth’s only natural satellite and was formed about 4.5 billion years ago. Its rotation synchronizes with the Earth’s. It is also the second brightest object in the Earth’s sky after the Sun.

The Moon orbits around the Earth once every 27.3 days. However, because the Earth is also rotating and orbiting around the Sun, the phases of the Moon occur about every 29.5 days.

So what are the phases of the Moon? The phases of the Moon are also known as “lunar phases” and they occur in a repeated cycle. The phases are directly related to the positioning between the Earth, the Moon and the Sun. This relationship affects how visible the Moon appears from the Earth. There are four primary phases of the Moon that include the 1st Quarter Moon, the Full Moon, the 3rd Quarter Moon and the New Moon. The 3rd Quarter Moon is also referred to as the Last Quarter Moon.

The New Moon: This is actually the first phase of the Moon in a lunar month (not a calendar month). This occurs when the Sun and the Moon are aligned on the same side of the Earth and the Moon is closest to the Sun.

1st Quarter Moon: This phase occurs between the New Moon and the Full Moon. It is the phase when only half of the Moon appears to be visible from Earth. At this phase the Moon rises at noon and is high overhead at sunset. Finally, it sets around midnight. Although it is referred to as a “quarter” – half of the Moon’s surface is visible so it is also often referred to as a Half Moon.

A Full Moon: This is when the Moon is completely illuminated by the Sun because it is opposite of the Sun. Because the Moon is fully lit, it often appears to be bigger and closer to the Earth.

3rd Quarter Moon (Last Quarter Moon): This phase occurs between the Full Moon and the New Moon with only half of the Moon’s surface visible from the Earth. This phase of the moon is not seen as often because it occurs between midnight and noon, meaning the moon rises at midnight and sets at noon. If you are seeing the Moon during daylight hours, then you know it is the 3rd Quarter/Last Quarter Moon.

The Moon’s phases do not fully align with a dated calendar. Therefore, to track the Moon’s phases, a lunar calendar is used. A lunar calendar is a calendar that is based on the phases of the moon and cycles approximately every 29 to 30 days.

1.
This is the first phase of the Moon.
Full Moon
1st Quarter Moon
New Moon
3rd Quarter Moon
The first phase of the Moon occurs when the Sun and the Moon are aligned on the same side of the Earth. This is known as the New Moon. Answer (c) is correct
2.
The Moon’s phases are tracked using a ______.
microscope
monthly calendar
sundial
lunar calendar
As the Moon’s phases cycle every 29 to 30 days, a lunar calendar is used to track it. Answer (d) is correct
3.
This Moon phase falls between the Full Moon and the New Moon.
1st Quarter Moon
3rd Quarter Moon
Waxing Crescent
Blue Moon
A Blue Moon is when two Full Moons occur in the same calendar month and it describes the second Full Moon in that month. As it is a Full Moon, Answer (d) is not correct. As the 1st Quarter and Waxing Crescent Moons occur before a Full Moon, neither Answer (a) nor (c) are correct. A 3rd Quarter Moon occurs between a Full Moon and a New Moon. Therefore, Answer (b) is correct
4.
There are _____ natural satellites in our solar system.
182
1
4.5 billion
9
At present, there are approximately 182 known natural satellites in our solar system. Answer (a) is correct
5.
This phase of the Moon rises at noon and sets at midnight.
3rd Quarter Moon
Full Moon
1st Quarter Moon
New Moon
The 1st Quarter Moon rises at noon, is at its highest at sunset and then sets at midnight. Answer (c) is correct
6.
In this phase of the Moon, the Moon is completely illuminated by the Sun because it is opposite of the Sun.
1st Quarter Moon
New Moon
3rd Quarter Moon
Full Moon
The phase in which the Moon is completely illuminated by the Sun is known as the Full Moon. Answer (d) is correct
7.
The Moon is a ______.
dwarf planet
stationary meteor
natural satellite
large asteroid
The Moon is a natural satellite and Earth’s only natural satellite. Answer (c) is correct
8.
There are __ principal phases of the Moon.
6
8
5
4
Although there are sub-phases of the Moon, it has four principal phases that include the New Moon, 1st Quarter, Full Moon and 3rd Quarter/Last Quarter. Answer (d) is correct
9.
This is also known as the Last Quarter Moon.
Full Moon
3rd Quarter Moon
New Moon
Half Moon
The Last Quarter Moon is also known as the 3rd Quarter Moon. It occurs between the Full Moon and the New Moon. Answer (b) is correct
10.
The Moon orbits the Earth approximately every ___ days.
27.3
28
29.5
30
The Moon orbits the Earth approximately every 27.3 days. Answer (a) is correct
Author:  Christine G. Broome

© Copyright 2016-2019 - Education Quizzes
TJS - Web Design Lincolnshire
View Printout in HTML

Valid HTML5

We use cookies to make your experience of our website better.

To comply with the new e-Privacy directive, we need to ask for your consent - I agree - No thanks - Find out more