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Painted Space

Astronomy lessons

I am happy to be invited to your school, library, community center, or extracurricular group to give an astronomy lesson. Below are descriptions of the lessons that I have already, but if you have a particular interest, we can discuss the design of a new lesson.

My native language is English, but I am comfortable giving these lessons in Dutch as well!

Ga naar de lesjes in het Nederlands


Solar System Dance

This interactive in-person lesson (aimed at children 4-8 years old) explains cool facts about each planet in our solar system as well as some dwarf planets and several moons. The students each choose a physical representation of a solar system object (all to scale) and will move around to represent their object.
For classes of more than 20, I can also add in some interesting recent solar system missions.
Note: This lesson requires a lot of floor space!


Constellation Crafting

In this lesson (suitable for 4-12 year olds) we will talk about the stories behind some of the northern constellations and make our own constellations with paper stars of different colors and sizes. For older students, I will discuss why stars have different colors and sizes in more depth.
The children may copy existing constellations or create their own with a story to go with it.
Note: This lesson requires a location with tables and chairs for crafting.


Orion Nebula across the spectrum

In this lesson (suitable for 6+ years old) we talk about what telescopes can see in different types of light. We use space art stickers based on real observations of the Orion Nebula to show how X-Ray, Near Infrared, Mid Infrared, Far Infrared, and sub-millimeter light looks compared to ordinary visible light.
For older students (12+) I can also demonstrate observational astrochemistry data using props.
For ideal engagement smaller groups (~20 students) are preferred, but this can also be adapted to a large group with extra preparation and volunteers.


Stunning spectra

In this lesson (for age 6+) we learn about the colors of light and how different materials have shine in different colors. The "spectra" or different color light, that comes from a material tells us about what is is made of. 
We will make our own spectroscopes and look at different materials (with break-resistant spectral lamps).
Smaller groups are ideal (15-20), but larger groups are possible.

Note: a location with tables and chairs is necessary for the craft and electricity is needed for the spectral lamps.

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