Science for the youngest of many

First-born preschooler:  Mama, where did the sun go?


Mama: Actually, the sun didn’t go anywhere.  The earth, our planet, is rotating on its axis.  Every day it does one full revolution.  When it faces the sun, it is daylight.  When it faces away, it is night.  See, here is a grape.  Let’s pretend it’s the Earth.  We’re here.  Now let’s pretend the lamp is the sun.  Watch how one side faces the sun and the other side is away from the sun…


*******


Second-born preschooler: Mommy, where did the sun go?


Mommy: Actually, the sun didn’t go anywhere.  The earth, our planet, is spinning.  During the day, we face the sun and during the night, we don’t.  Here, let’s spin this ball.  You see how sometimes this side has the light shining right on it….


*******


Third-born preschooler: Mom, where did the sun go? 


Mom: Actually, our planet is spinning like a top. Sometimes we face the sun and sometimes we don’t. So it looks like the sun has gone away, but it’s really that we have spun away from it…




*******
 
Fourth-born preschooler: Mom, where did the sun go?
 
Mom: To sleep.  Like you need to.
 
*******
 
Fifth-born preschooler: Ma, where did the sun go?
 
Ma: It went to the other side of the world so that they can have sunlight and we can get a good night’s sleep.
 
*******
 
Sixth-born preschooler: Mommy, where did the sun go?
 
Mommy: To China.
 
SBP: China?
 
Mommy: Yup.
 
SBP: Why to China?
 
Mommy: It’s their turn.  We’re sharing.
 
SBP: Why we sharing?
 
Mommy: Well, it wouldn’t be nice if we kept the sun all the time, right?  Now they get a chance to have some sunlight and we get a chance to go to bed.
 
(next morning)
 
SBP: Mommy, where’s the sun?
 
Mommy: Still in China.  It’ll be here soon.
 
SBP: Oh.  OK.
 
…to be continued, every day and night, for the next 3 or 4 months…

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