Day 13: Sky Domes

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Model building and going old school. Check out the paper and Elmer’s glue. Students in the astronomy class are building their own sky dome that allows them to understand the spatial relationships between constellations. The project is best done in steps with a day or two between work periods to allow the glue to dry and the model to be stronger in the end. It makes for a nice break from the planetarium and stellar notes!

Day 7: First Day in Planetarium

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My one elective class is astronomy with 15 students in grades 9-12. So far they have been the hardest working astronomy class I have had. After a couple of days in the classroom (using Stellarium and discussing seasons) we had class in the planetarium for the first time. We covered Ursa Major, Ursa Minor, Cassiopeia, Cepheus, and Draco. The students learned how to find Polaris and were surprised (as always) to learn it is not a particularly bright star. Our planetarium was built in 1970 and houses a 30′ dome and a Spitz A4 projector.