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  • Suggested Age Range: 4 – 5 years; 5 – 6 years; 6 – 7 years
  • UK Curriculum: EYFS; KS1
  • Suggested UK Year Group: Year 1
  • UK Primary Curriculum Link: Living things and their habitats
  • Science Subject: Animals
  • Science Question: Why do we have day and night? Why do some animals like the day and some the night?
  • Suggested Science Activity: Day and Night
  • Children with SEND: Use to boost comprehension of science vocabulary
  • EAL children: Beginners level
  • Country of Origin: First Nations of Canada
  • Source: The Man in the Moon by Alta Jablow and Carl Withers

Long ago, when the world began, before the humans came, there was one Earth and there was one Sun, but there was no Moon in the sky.
And at night – it was very, very, very dark!
All the night-time animals found it very difficult to see. They bumped into trees, they fell over rocks, and, worst of all,  they could not see to find their food.

Except for Bat of course – he could see by sound!
But, for everyone else, it was very difficult indeed.

One night, Owl, Wolf, Otter and Bat met at their favourite meeting place, a tree, by the edge of the forest down by the river-bank, deep amongst the long prairie grass.

“I am so hungry” said Owl “I haven’t eaten for hours!”
“I am so hungry” said Wolf “I haven’t eaten for days!”
“I am so hungry” said Otter “I haven’t eaten for weeks!”
“Well I am not hungry at all” said Bat happily  “I had a nice juicy snack an hour ago!”
“Hah” said Wolf.  “It is all right for you, Bat! You can see by sound. But we can’t.  We cannot see at all! It is too dark! We need more light at night!”
And Owl and Otter said “Yes you are right – we need more light at night!”

But how? Where could they find more light? They thought for a while.

“Ahah!” said Owl. “I remember! I was flying past the mountain one night, and at the bottom of the mountain there was a cave. And in the cave there glowed a strange silver light! What can it be?”

“Ahah” said Wolf “I have seen it too! Bear lives in the cave!  It is his light!” 
“Ahah!” said Otter “I have seen it too! The light is big and round and silver! But what is it?”

“I know, I know, I know!” squeaked Bat with excitement. “I have seen it too! He has a big bag hidden in his cave and inside that bag is a huge silver ball of light.”

“Wow” said Owl “A big silver ball of light! Is it big enough for all of us to share?”
“Oh yes” said Bat, “it is really really really big and very bright!”
“Let’s ask Bear to share the light with us, so we can all find food to eat!” said Wolf.

And so they did. 
Otter jumped into the river and swam towards the mountain. 
Wolf ran beside the river and Owl and Bat flew overhead. 

They saw the mountain in the distance.  And they were right! 
At the bottom of the mountain was a cave. 
And, from inside the cave, came a silver glow of light. 
As they came closer and closer, they could see Bear! 
He was curled up beside was a big bag. 
And inside the big bag glowed a silver light, that got bigger and bigger and bigger as they came closer and closer and closer to the cave.

And at the entrance of the cave, they stopped, they listened.
And from inside the cave, they heard sounds of snoring. Bear was fast asleep!

“Bear” squeaked Bat, “Wake up!” But he carried on sleeping!
“Bear” called Owl, “Wake up!” But he carried on sleeping!
“BEAR” howled Wolf, “Wake up!”  And Bear did!
“What’s up? Whats the matter? Why are you making so much noise?” said Bear, grumpily.
“Bear!” said Owl, “We need your help! Please will you share your light with us?”
“No!” said Bear.  “Go away!”
“But we need light to live” said Otter.  “Please share your light with us!”
“No!” said Bear.  “It’s my light. Go away!”
“Bear, please!” begged Wolf.
“No!” said Bear “Its my light. And I won’t share it with anyone! Go away!”

Oh dear! What to do?
The animals went away. Back to their favourite tree. And they thought for a while.
“It’s no good!” said Wolf. “If he won’t share the light. We shall just have to steal it!” 
“And then we can share the light with everyone” said Otter.
“But how?” said Owl.
“I know, I know, I know!” said Bat excitedly, “I have a  cunning plan to steal the light from Bear and give it to everyone!” 

And once the animals had heard the plan, they all agreed to help!

So …

Owl flew to the top of their favourite tree and stayed there. 
Wolf ran to a rock that was half-way between the mountain and the tree and hid behind the rock. 
Otter dived into the water and swam to the bottom of the mountain and waited by the entrance to the cave.
Bat flew into the cave, as quietly as he could. 
Was Bear still asleep? Yes he was! Bat could hear him snoring! 
So as quietly as he could, Bat flew into the cave. He saw that bag with the silver ball!   He grabbed the bag with the ball and carried up into the air  and out of the cave.  
But, Bats are tiny and the bag was very heavy! 

The bag was too heavy! Bat found himself falling …
And as Bat fell, Otter jumped! And caught the bag! Otter grabbed in his strong jaws and dived back into the river!

Bat squeaked with excitement!

“Otter!” “Otter!” “Otter!” “Go, go, go!”
“Otter!” “Otter!” “Otter!” “Go, go, go!”
“Otter!” “Otter!” “Otter!” “Go, go, go!”

But of course his cries – woke up Bear! Who saw that the bag hag gone! 
Bear roared with rage and ran out of the cave to see Otter swimming as fast as he could with the bag in his jaws.
Bear dived into the water and chased after Otter.

Bat squeaked with excitement

“Otter!” “Otter!” “Go, go, go!”
“Otter!” “Otter!”“Go, go, go!”
“Otter!” “Otter!” “Go, go, go!”

But …

Oh no!  Bears are bigger than Otters and can swim faster! 
Bear swam closer and closer and closer to Otter.
The bag was very heavy. Otter began to slow. Bear grew closer!
But, Otter saw a large rock, on the riverbank. And behind the rock was Wolf!
Wolf reached out a paw, grabbed the bag from the Otter and ran as fast as he could.
Bear climbed out of the water and chased after him! 

Otter and Bat, jumped and squeaked with excitement !

“Wolf!” “Wolf!” “Go, go, go!” 
“Wolf!” “Wolf!” “Go, go, go!”
“Wolf!” “Wolf!” “Go, go, go!”

But …

Oh no!  Bears are bigger than Wolves and can run faster! 
Bear ran closer and closer and closer to Wolf.

And the bag was very heavy. Wolf began to slow. Bear grew closer …
But, there was their favourite tree, and there was Owl! 
Wolf threw the bag up into the air! And Owl caught it.

Wolf, Otter and Bat, jumped and squeaked and howled with excitement! 

“Owl!” “Owl!” “Go, go, go!”
“Owl!” “Owl!” “Go, go, go!”
“Owl!” “Owl!” “Go, go, go!”

And Owl carried the bag up into the sky. And then he opened it!
The big ball of silver floated up and up and up into the air and became the Moon.
And from that day on, the Moon shone for everyone.

And so all the nighttime animals had enough light to live.
And so they lived – happily ever after!

But do YOU think this is true?
Why does the Moon shine at night and the Sun in the day?

Scientists say it is because the Earth is spinning in the sky. And because the Earth is always moving, sometimes we face the sun and sometimes we do not.

The part of the Earth that is facing the sun has lots of light, which we call day and the part of the Earth facing away from the sun is dark, which is we call night.

But what do YOU think is true?

Copyright: Cassandra Wye, 2019