Phases of the Moon

Phases of the Moon Pictures

New Moon- In astronomy, new moon is the first phase of the Moon, when it orbits as seen from the Earth, the moment when the Moon and the Sun have the same ecliptical longitude. The Moon is not visible [note 1] at this time except when it is seen in silhouette during a solar eclipse or illuminated by earthshine.

Waning Crescent- Waning Moon means the moon is decreasing in size, moving from the Full Moon towards the New Moon. This is a time for spells that banish, release, reverse.

First Quarter- A first quarter moon rises at noon and is high overhead at sunset. It sets around midnight.

Third Quarter- A last quarter moon looks half-illuminated. It rises around midnight, appears at its highest in the sky at dawn, and sets around noon.

Waning Gibbous- The waning gibbous moon, is defined to occur when the Moon appears to be more than one-half but not fully illuminated by direct sunlight.

Full Moon- the phase of the moon in which its whole disk is illuminated.

Waxing Gibbous- The word crescent refers to the phases where the moon is less than half illuminated. The word gibbous refers to phases where the moon is more than half illuminated. Waxing essentially means "growing" or expanding in illumination, and waning means "shrinking" or decreasing in illumination.

Waxing Crescent- After the new moon, the sunlit portion is increasing, but less than half, so it is waxing crescent. After the first quarter, the sunlit portion is still increasing, but now it is more than half, so it is waxing gibbous.

Phase of the Moon Chart


1. When only a small part of the moon is visible, the moon may be in its

A. first-quarter phase
B. waning-crescent phase
C. new moon phase
D. last-quarter phase

2. Approximately how many days does it take the moon to go through a complete cycle?

A. 7
B. 11
C. 27
D. 29

3. When the visible portion of the moon is increasing, the moon is

A. waxing
B. full
C. waning
D. waning-crescent

4. Earth has seasons because

A. the temperature of the sun changes
B. Earth rotates on its axis
C. Earth's axis is tilted as it moves around the sun
D. the distance between Earth and the sun changes

5. From new moon to full moon phase you see

A. a decreasing amount of the lighted side of the moon
B. an increasing amount of the lighted side of the moon
C. more of the lighted side, then less of the lighted side of the moon
D. the same amount of the lighted side of the moon

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