When Night and Day Get Even

Today, March 19 is the first day of spring. It’s the earliest date that spring can arrive, thanks to Leap Day. It’s also the vernal equinox: because the earth is tilted neither toward nor away from the sun today, everyone on our whole planet has a 12-hour night and a 12-hour day. But if you missed it, don’t worry — we’ll get another equinox as the first day of fall!

Wee ones: The sun rose today at about 6 am everywhere.  But if you have Daylight Savings, your clock time said 1 hour later than that. What time did your clock say at sunrise?

Little kids: The sun actually takes a couple of minutes for the whole disc to show in the sky. If the sun started rising at 6:57 am, and takes 2 minute to rise fully, at what time is the whole sun up?  Bonus: If you’ll have sunshine for 12 hours today but stay awake 3 hours longer than that, how long are you awake?

Big kids: Sunrise and sunset change the most from day to day at this time of year. If the sun now rises 2 minutes earlier each day, how much earlier will it rise 2 weeks from now?  Bonus: So if the sun rose for you today at 7:05 am, at what time will sunrise be for you in 2 weeks?

Wee ones: 7 am.

Little kids: 6:59 am.  Bonus: 15 hours.

Big kids: 28 minutes earlier.  Bonus: At 6:37 am.

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