Moon Mobile

Lesson #12191

Create a box that holds a moon mobile.

Grade Level:
3-5, 6-8

This clever Moon Phase box mobile will introduce and reinforce the phases of the Earth’s Moon. Students will also learn how to create a box from a piece of paper.

Students will learn how to make a box while reinforcing the waning and waxing of the Moon phases. Discuss how the position of the Sun and Earth show the amount of illuminated surface of the Moon as seen from Earth. As the Moon waxes, more of the illuminated surface can be seen. As the Moon wanes, less of the Moon is illuminated.

A11009-Sizzix Bigz Die - Moon Phases
Adhesive, Construction paper, Pen (white), Pencil, Ribbon, Ruler, Scissors
Adhesive, Construction paper, Pen (white), Pencil, Ribbon, Ruler, Scissors

The teacher will die-cut the materials for student use prior to the lesson.

  1. Die-cut the Moon Phases from yellow construction paper. Die-cut the full Moon circle from black paper. Cut enough of each phase and circle to show the waxing, waning and full Moon and to decorate the top of the box (Figure A).
  2. Adhere each Moon Phase to a black circle. Lay the phases in correct order facing down on the table.
  3. Cut a length of ribbon that will cover all the circles with an opening between the circles. Allow 6" of ribbon at the beginning of the mobile to connect the ribbon to the box lid. 
  4. Place adhesive on the back of each circle. Lay the ribbon down the middle of each circle. Place a black circle over the ribbon, sandwiching the ribbon between the two circles. Lay the ribbon and Moon shapes aside while creating the box.
  5. To create a box use two pieces of square paper. The lid of the box is a 9" square, and the bottom of the box is an 8 3/4" square.

For the box bottom:

  1. Use a ruler and pencil to mark each square from corner to corner on the diagonal.
  2. Fold each corner in to where the lines intersect. Press on each fold, and then open the folds.
  3. Bring each corner across to where the pencil line and the fold line intersect, and fold again on all four corners. Press on each fold, and open the folds.
  4. Take one corner to the first fold line, and fold. Fold all four corners. Press, and open the folds.
  5. Starting where the first two folds meet on a corner, cut along the fold line to the center fold. Repeat on the other side of the same corner.
  6. Go to the opposite side of the box and repeat this process.
  7. Cut only on two corners and not on all four corners.
  8. Position the box so that the cut areas are horizontal on the table.
  9. Place adhesive on one corner, and bring the point back to the original fold where the two pencil lines meet.
  10. Reverse fold, and bring in the edges of the fold.
  11. Turn the box around, and do the same with the other corner, bringing in the sides. The box will begin to take shape.
  12. On the two other sides of the box, place adhesive on the corners, and bring to the pencil lines, Press down.

For the box lid:

  1. Follow the instructions above for the lid of the box, except leave the last corner open to attach the end of the ribbon.
  2. Place adhesive on the inside bottom of the box lid. Take the extra ribbon at the beginning of the Moon circles, and press the ribbon end down to adhere to the box lid.
  3. Place adhesive on the last corner of the lid, and press the corner down over the ribbon.
  4. Fold the completed mobile into the bottom of the box (Figure B).
  5. Adhere a decorated Moon circle to the lid of the box, and write the title with a white pen.
  6. When the box is opened and the lid is lifted, the Moon Phases will rise to show the waxing and waning of the Moon (Main Photo).

  • Figure A

  • Figure B

Fine Arts-Visual Arts
NA-VA.K-4.2 Using Knowledge of Structures and Functions
Achievement Standard:

  • Students use visual structures and functions of art to communicate ideas

NA-VA.K-4.6 Making Connections Between Visual Arts and Other Disciplines
Achievement Standard:

  • Students identify connections between the visual arts and other disciplines in the curriculum


Science-Earth & Space
NS.K-4.4 Earth and Space Science
As a result of their activities in grades K–4, all students should develop an understanding of

  • Objects in the sky
  • Changes in earth and sky


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