Why do we have seasons and how do they affect my life?
We have seasons because the earth is tilted on its axis, as it makes its yearly journey around the sun.
The Earth’s axis is tilted at an angle of 23.5 degrees. This means that the earth is always ‘pointing’ to one side as it goes around the sun. So, sometimes the sun is in the direction that the earth is pointing, but not at other times. The varying amount of sunlight around the earth, during the year, creates the seasons.
We have hot summers and cold winters because of the tilt of the earth’s axis.
The tilt of the earth means that earth will lean towards the sun, which creates ‘Summer’ or lean away from the sun which creates ‘Winter’, 6 months later. In between these, spring and autumn will occur.
The North Pole begins to move away from the sun. The sun rises lower in the sky, so the days start getting shorter. When the sun is at mid-point in the sky, we reach the ‘Autumn Equinox’ around the 22nd of September. Day and night are both 12 hours long and it’s the beginning of autumn.
The earth continues on its path, and our North Pole starts moving towards the sun again. The sun moves upwards in our skies and the days continue getting longer. We reach a mid-point when day and night are both 12 hours long. This is called the ‘Vernal (or spring) Equinox’, and happens around the 21st of March.
During the summer, the sun rays hit the earth at a steep angle because the sun is higher in the sky. The light does not spread out very much; this increases the amount of energy hitting any place. The long daylight hours during the summer months allow the earth plenty of time, to reach warm temperatures. This is why the days are hotter in the summer months.
Because the sun is higher, in the sky our shadows our shorter than they are in any other three seasons.
During the winter, the sun rays hit the earth at a shallow angle, because the sun is lower in the sky. The...
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