Today’s Wonder of the Day was inspired by HoZa from AL. HoZa Wonders, “What happens on full moon” Thanks for WONDERing with us, HoZa!

Listen! Do you hear dogs howling? How about birds cawing? Do you see signs of other strange behavior? You’d better check the sky. There could be a full moon!

Have you ever seen old scary movies? If so, you probably already know that a full moon is supposed to bring out werewolves. These aren’t the only things supposedly affected by the phase of the moon, though.

Throughout history, different phases of the moon — especially the full moon — have been linked to all sorts of behaviors. Some police officers believe that a full moon leads to more crimes being committed.

Others believe a full moon can lead to accidents and natural disasters. Some hospital workers also think birth rates go up around the time of the full moon every month. One belief — that the full moon causes madness — is very widespread. In fact, moon-inspired words sometimes describe it: lunacy and lunatic!

So are all these beliefs true? Do weird things happen during a full moon? It’s true that weird things can happen during a full moon. After all, weird things happen every day, right? However, there’s no proof that any particular behaviors occur because of or more frequently during a full moon.

Many scientific studies have been conducted in an effort to try to find proof of a “full moon effect.” What have they found? There’s no strong evidence to tie the full moon to odd behaviors. Not yet, anyway.

So there’s no scientific proof that a full moon encourages weird behavior. Then why do so many people believe it does? For one thing, popular media help to perpetuate these beliefs. Hundreds of books, television shows and movies make the link between a full moon and odd behavior.

Scientists know that the moon does affect the ocean’s tides. Many people have extended this scientific fact into fantasy, though. They claim that something powerful enough to affect the world’s oceans could also affect human behavior.

More likely, people are more likely to notice the full moon when weird things happen. It makes them  WONDER whether the moon had something to do with what happened. At other times, no one thinks to consider whether the moon has anything to do with behavior.

What do you think? Do you believe human behavior is affected by the moon? Why or why not? Whether it’s true not, the full moon still seems magical hanging in the night sky!

Standards: NGSS.ESS1.A, NGSS.ESS1.B, C3.D2.Geo.1, CCRA.L.3, CCRA.L.6, CCRA.R.1, CCRA.R.2, CCRA.R.10, CCRA.W.3, CCRA.L.1, CCRA.L.2, CCRA.SL.1

Wonder What's Next?

This Wonder of the Day is brought to you by the letter “zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz!”