Teaching Resource

How to Make a Sundial

$0.99 or Free on Plus | 2 pages (PDF)|Grades: 3 - 4

A worksheet outlining how to make a sundial.

Use the information sheet to guide your students on how to make a sundial. Students are then required to record their results on the worksheet provided.

  NSW Curriculum alignment

  Victorian Curriculum alignment

  Australian Curriculum alignment

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We followed the instructions to make this sundial but when we went out to mark in the time at 1clock the shadow was at 11am any ideas why this happened? Should we have been standing facing a certain direction?

ELAINE SIPPEL · Nov 25th, 2019

Hi Elaine,
The sundial needs to be calibrated at noon (12:00 pm) and 1:00 pm. Once you have these two marks (hours) on the sundial, the other shadow positions can be estimated and marked accordingly.
In the Southern Hemisphere, sundials operate anticlockwise. That may explain why the shadow was at 11:00 am on your class’s sundial.
If you have any other questions, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

Tom (Teach Starter) · Nov 25th, 2019

I was told at university that sundials were designed for the Northern hemisphere

Nusrat Aga · Jun 1st, 2020

Resource Updates

  • A note has been added to the resource to inform students that sundials operate in a clockwise direction in the northern hemisphere and in an anticlockwise direction in the southern hemisphere.

    Addition by Stephanie (Teach Starter) Aug 3rd, 2020

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