Last Night There Was A Mesmerizing
About Last Night
And, I’m not talking about one of those wimpy ones. It was one of those giant, glowing, fill-the-sky full moons. Only, I didn’t know there was going to be one. Instead, I noticed completely by accident. As I was climbing into bed for the night, its light was shining through the crack between my curtains.
It reminded me of another full moon night. One that occurred in July of the year I turned 30 years old. We hosted a 30th birthday party in the backyard. This is actually a rare thing in my world. Generally, I downplay birthdays. But you know, it was 30.
The party was surprisingly well attended. The weather was perfect. It had been slightly too hot during the day. But, the lake effect and later hours created a far more pleasant evening. Friends wanted to stay, to hang outside. Very early into the morning, a few stragglers were still hanging on.
Another friend who had arrived much later in the evening asked if I wanted to go for a quick walk. How could I say no? It was so beautiful outside.
A Walk In The Moonlight
We decided to head toward Lake Michigan. The lakefront was only about a half mile away from my home. When we arrived to the shoreline, I found myself mesmerized. Even though it was two or three in the morning, the solid black sky was lit up by the brightest glow I had ever seen. It was a cloudless night. The waves beneath responded with loud, repetitive crashes. The fiery glow reflected off the surface of the water.
Last night’s moon was much like this.
I cracked my curtains open a few inches more, put my glasses back on and stared out my window into the moonlight. To be completely accurate, its official name was a “sturgeon moon.”
The word sturgeon does not describe the type of moon. Instead, it indicates the time of year. Apparently, mid-August is best for fishing the sturgeon residing within the Great Lakes. Once again mesmerized, the sturgeon moon led me into a teacher memory.
It got me thinking about how full moons might affect people’s behavior. Specifically, the behavior of students in our classrooms. Over the years, I have discovered two camps of believers when it comes to full moons: Teachers who believe full moons affect the behavior of children and teachers who don’t.
“There Must Be A Full Moon”
During my first-year teaching at a new school, I remember one particular dismissal. Classes were slowly making their way through the after school bus line. The line was at a standstill, so I struck up a quick conversation with the teacher behind me. I quickly mentioned to her what a crazy day I had. She responded, “Yes, that’s because there is a full moon tonight.” It was the first time I remember hearing anyone say this. I found her idea interesting.
Later in the same line and waiting for a late bus, I wound up next to a different teacher. A similar conversation occurred. She mentioned her kids were acting extra silly that day. Not having thought about this before, I suggested to her maybe it’s because there will be a full moon tonight. She looked me straight in the eyes and responded with great certainty, “Hogwash! I don’t believe in any of that moon nonsense. Behavior is just behavior.”
I needed to think about this some more. Maybe behavior was just behavior. But, weird things do seem to happen around full moons.
A full decade later, I’ve chosen a side.
I think full moons DO affect people’s behavior. I know, it might sound a bit hippy dippy. But think about it.
Last year, one of my students became very interested in outer space. Following the child’s interest, we did some research on moons, water in outer space, and terraforming Mars (not such a good idea in my opinion).
Before last year, I hadn’t quite understood how the tides were affected by the moon. It all comes down to good old fashioned gravity.
Earth’s gravity holds the moon in its orbit. In return, the moon’s gravitational pull generates something called the tidal force. The tidal force causes Earth—and its water—to bulge out. These bulges of water are called high tides. The bulge occurs on the side closest to the moon.
The Gifts of Montessori
Inversely, the earth’s gravitational force pushes the moon away again. The affect of the moon weakens on the earth and its water. This is called a low tide. And this goes on, and on, and on…
The Montessori Methodology has given me many wonderful gifts. The one I find most valuable is the realization of the interconnectedness of all things.
We are literally connected to the universe. In fact, every discovered element in our Universe began within a star.
Carbon, Hydrogen, Oxygen, Nitrogen. The elements that make up the vast majority of our atmosphere. They also make up the majority of our bodies. This means, we were born among the stars.
The gravity of the moon is strong enough to pull and push vast oceans of water. It isn’t much of a leap then, in my opinion, to connect this same concept to people. The Earth and the Moon’s gravity is so powerful. Powerful enough to remind us a couple times a year we were all born among the stars.
Do you have thoughts or ideas about full moons or high tides? Do you have a suggestion for another blog topic? Please send me an email with your ideas or experiences at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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