Stellariup Workshop Transcript: Back to Main Workshop Page

Third Grade:
Objective: After guided interaction and demonstration, students will be able to successfully identify the relative position of the earth sun and moon with 80% accuracy based on observation of the moon phase.
Stellarium Objective: Participants will demonstrate the ability to navigate Stellarium to successfully replicate the observation of the movements of the Earth Moon and Sun.

Standard Course Of Study
3.02 Observe that objects in the sky have patterns of movement including:
• Sun.
• Moon.
• Stars.
3.04 Use appropriate tools to make observations of the moon.
3.05 Observe and record the change in the apparent shape of the moon from day to day over several months and describe the pattern of changes.
3.06 Observe that patterns of stars in the sky stay the same, although they appear to move across the sky nightly.

Activities:
Step 1: Familiarize with navigation controls

  • Setting your Location (TeacherTube Video)
    • Side tool bar - Location Window - zoom the map with scroll wheel or enter coordinates or enter city
    • Note: You can set your viewing PLANET so that you can observe the sky from places like the MOON and MARS.
  • Navigation
    • Take a look around - Use mouse/touch pad/arrow keys to navigate around the sky (TeacherTube Video)
    • external image File?id=dcgsh28z_132hghxxkft_b
    • Zoom in and out - use the wheel on the mouse or the Page Up / Page Down keys
    • Select Objects and Hold Focus - click with the mouse and then press SPACE BAR to hold
  • Controlling time
    • speed controls - bottom tray on the right. Rewind - Play - Current Time - Fast Forward
    • date and time control - advance year - month - day : hour - minute - second
  • Turn ON/OFF - atmosphere & ground - bottom tray center area
  • Turn on constellations, constellation names, constellation art, nebula's and planets
  • SKY and VIEWING Options
    • Sky
      • Stars - mostly leave blank
      • Planets and Satelites - Show Planets, Planet Markers, Scale Moon
      • Atmosphere - Show it and set light pollution to simulate your location.
      • Labes and Markers - Each slider will show dimmer objects when moved to the right. I find nebulas useful when looking for objects to image with a telescope.
      • Shooting stars - the max rate of 144,000 was the peak of the 1966 Leonid Meteor Shower
    • Markings
      • Celestial Sphere - here you can turn on grids that are used to locate places in the night sky, Similar to longitude and latitude on the Earth
        • The Ecliptic Line traces the apparent path the sun takes through the sky over the course of a year
        • The cardinal points are helpful for setting North, South, East and West for the observer.
      • Constellations - typically lines and labels are all you need, but for an added kick turn on the art to explore what the constellations really were. See the "Big Dipper" Ursa Major.
      • Projection - each projection method has its plus and minuses but the variety arises from the problems of projecting 3-D universe onto a 2-D screen.
    • Landscape
      • A nice variety of location images can be used to add interest to your observations. Use Mars and the Moon when traveling to view from those locations. (see Sky section above)

Step 2: Observe Patterns of movement.

  1. SUN
    1. SUN moves across the sky each day
      1. set the sky viewing options window - Markings - to ORTHOGRAPHIC projection
      2. set the time just before sun up and slect and hold on the sun. then fast play the sun through the sky for a day or two.
    2. SUN Rise Moves around horizon over the year.
      1. set the sky viewing options window - Markings - to STEREOGRAPHIC projection
      2. Set you location to the eastern time zone but near the equator.
      3. Set the time to about 8 AM, look due east to southeast. Advance a month at a time to see the pattern of where the sun rises change.
        1. What is going on when the sun jumps? To find out visit: http://www.webexhibits.org/daylightsaving/b.html
    3. SUN's movement over background stars
      1. Select and hold the sun if it is not already done so.
      2. Turn off the Ground and the Atmosphere using the toolbar at the bottom. Turn on the Asmithal Mount external image File?id=dcgsh28z_129cx62zxgd_b
      3. Turn on the Ecliptic line - Side Tray - Sky and Viewing Options Window - Markings - Ecliptic Line
      4. Turn on the Constellations and Names (turn off planet and star names to cause less clutter) external image File?id=dcgsh28z_130f6fdtxdb_b external image File?id=dcgsh28z_131gn2qbdg4_b
      5. Using the Date and Time window, advance the day quickly and watch the sun move through the constellations. What is special about the constellations it moves through?
  2. MOON - moves across the sky each day
    1. Set Date to 2/25/10 and time to 8:00 AM - fast play to see the moon travel through the sky
    2. Select and hold (space bar) focus on the moon. Zoom in on the moon using forward slash ( / ).
    3. Turn off ground and the Atmosphere using the toolbar at the bottom. Turn on the Asmithal Mount external image File?id=dcgsh28z_129cx62zxgd_b
    4. Advance time by one day at a time to see the phase changes of the moon.
    5. Compare the location of the moon to the Sun by slewing around to find the position of the sun (support with graphic images as well).
      1. Questions: Where is the sun during Full Moon? New Moon? 1/4 moon?
  3. Stars - rotation of constellations and stars across the sky
    1. Turn off the Asmithal Mount external image File?id=dcgsh28z_129cx62zxgd_b
    2. Turn on the constellations and Select Polaris and the end of Ursa Minor. (Hint: Use the magnifying glass search for Polaris)
    3. fast play time to watch the constellations and stars spin.
  4. Turn on constellation names and art and begin discussion of folk lore

Stellarium - Lesson Plan Grade 3
Grade Level:
3
Subject:
Science
Prepared By:
Ashley Bullock & Ben Davis
Standard Course of Study Goals & Objectives
3.02: Observe that objects in the sky have patterns of movement including: Sun, Moon, and Stars.
3.04: Use appropriate tools to make observations of the moon.
3.05: Observe and record the change in the apparent shape of the moon from day to day over several months and describe the pattern of changes.
3.06: Observe that patterns of stars in the sky stay the same, although they appear to move across the sky nightly.
Technology Integration
Use of a simulation to view the sun/moon/earth system, apparent shapes of the moon across time, and patterns of stars in the sky.

Description
Student Resources
Prior Knowledge/ Experience
· Students should show proficiency with applicable terminology (vocabulary).
· Review/informally assess student knowledge.
Materials Needed
· Stellarium program
· “Setting Your Location” (video)
Guided Activity
Begin with a simple guided tour of the program for the kids. Keep it simple
· Moving the view around
· Advancing time
· Turning on constellations
· Searching for objects, selecting, hold on object
· Ground and Atmosphere
Project
You are a member of a research team who is building a solar telescope to observe the SUN. Your job is to make observations of the sun to see:
· Is there a pattern to where the sun rises throughout the year?
· Is there a pattern to what constellations the sun passes in front of throughout the year?
Your team is also building a lunar observatory as well. You will need to make observations of the MOON:
· How does the moon travel through the sky compared to the earth.
· Shape of the moon each day for one month
· Questions: Where is the sun during Full Moon? New Moon? 1/4 moon?
Finally make observations of the constellations.
· How do the constellations move through the sky?
· Where did the constellation names and shapes come from? How do other cultures view the night sky?

Interdisciplinary Connections
· Use myths, folktales and legends associated with constellations. (SS 7.02; ELA 2.02)
· Compare maps historically. Use graphic organizers to show influences of the known sun/moon/earth system on mapping and exploration (SS 3.02, 4.01; ELA 4.04)
· Chart the phases of the moon for a set period of time and compare the actual data with the simulation. Record the data using spreadsheets/databases (M 4.01)

Sixth grade
Objective: After exploring the solar system through guided travel in Stellarium, students will demonstrate an understanding of the cycles of the solar system.
Activity:

  • Star Lore: Movement of Sun, Moon, Planets and Stars affected the culture in calendar creation, Anasazi building structures (Video - The Mystery of Chaco Canyon http://www.bullfrogfilms.com/catalog/mocc.html)
    • Also see United Streaming Video: The_Anasazi_Pueblo_Bonito
Standard Course of Study Objectives:
Competency Goal 5: The learner will build understanding of the Solar System. Objectives
5.01 Analyze the components and cycles of the solar system including:
• Sun.
• Planets and moons.
• Asteroids and meteors.
• Comets.
• Phases.
• Seasons.
• Day/year.
• Eclipses.
5.02 Compare and contrast the Earth to other planets in terms of:
• Size.
• Composition.
• Relative distance from the sun.
With Social Studies Tie In
11.02 Examine the basic needs and wants of all human beings and assess the influence of factors such as environment, values and beliefs in creating different cultural responses.

12.02 Describe the relationship between cultural values of selected societies of South America and Europe and their art, architecture, music and literature, and assess their significance in contemporary culture.

ACTIVITIES

  1. Analyze the components and cycles of the solar system
    1. Turn off the constellations, ground and atmosphere.
      1. Turn off the Asmithal Mount external image File?id=dcgsh28z_129cx62zxgd_b
    2. Search for Mercury, center on it and lock it in with the space bar. Zoom in using ( / )
    3. Using the time advance notice that mercury rotates very slowly on its axis. (here is a tie in to web research on planet facts: http://starchild.gsfc.nasa.gov/docs/StarChild/solar_system_level2/solar_system.html)
      1. Using the date and time controls, advance a day at a time to observe the phases of Mercury.
      2. Next select the Location Control and change the PLANET location to SUN. Re-center on Mercury if Needed. (NOTE: you are now standing on the sun looking out at the solar system!)
      3. Turn on the constellations and their names using the buttons on the bottom tray.
      4. Use the day and month controls to observe mercury's fast orbit of the sun.
        1. Set the day to 3/5/2010 and the time to 9 AM. This should put Mercury just at the front point of CAPRICORNUS.
        2. Click and hold the day advance button to watch mercury circle through the background constellations as it orbits the sun. Have the students record the day that Mercury returns to its starting point at the tip of Capricornus. Students can then calculate the number of earth days it takes for Mercury to go around the sun! They can check their answers at the web site given above.
    4. Search for Venus and repeat the Mercury activities
      1. Additional Point of Interest
        Set date to 2012/6/5 & 17:55:00 - be sure atmosphere and ground are off - advance time to watch a transit of the sun. Transits happen in pairs that are 8 years apart. Tie in with Jeremiah Horrocks who used the 1639 transit to refine Kepler's calculation of the orbit of Venus and calculate the size of Venus and the distance from Earth to the Sun known as the astronomical unit. This will be the second of the transit pair. The first occured in 2004. We won't have another transit until 2117! (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jeremiah_Horrocks#Transit_of_Venus)
    5. EARTH - to observe the Earth,
      1. open the Location window and change the planet to Ceres (an asteroid)
      2. Search for Earth Use the same techniques to observe earth phases as seen from other planets. Investigate the movement of the moon around the earth
      3. While out here check out the planetary alignment and the hyped end of the myan calendar in 2012, complete with planetary alignment
      4. set date to 2012/12/12 and note how the planets seem to be in a straight line.
    6. Continue exploring the planets and their moons using these techniques.
    7. Solar Eclipse:
      1. Set your location to the coordinates: Latitude: N 26 30' 0.00" - Longitude: E 88 0' 0.00"
      2. Set the date and time to 2009 / 7 / 21 : 21:0:32
      3. Search for the Moon. You should be located in Eastern India and the moon should be blocking the sun. Total Solar Eclipse
        for more information, see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solar_eclipse_of_july_22,_2009

Stellarium
Grade Level:6 Subject:Science
Prepared By:Ashley Bullock & Ben Davis
Standard Course of Study Goals & Objectives
Objective: After exploring the solar system through guided travel in Stellarium, students will demonstrate an understanding of the cycles of the solar system.
NCSCOS:
Competency Goal 5: The learner will build understanding of the Solar System. Objectives
5.01 Analyze the components and cycles of the solar system including:
• Sun.
• Planets and moons.
• Asteroids and meteors.
• Comets.
• Phases.
• Seasons.
• Day/year.
• Eclipses.
5.02 Compare and contrast the Earth to other planets in terms of:
• Size.
• Composition.
• Relative distance from the sun.
Technology Integration
Use of a simulation to view the solar system and investigate the objects in it.
Use of the Internet and Video for research and supporting Detail.
Description
Student Resources
Prior Knowledge/ Experience
· Students should show proficiency with applicable terminology (vocabulary).
· Review/informally assess student knowledge.
Materials Needed
· Stellarium program
· Internet
www.screentoaster.com
· Anasazi video of Chaco Canyon (we used one from Discovery Education Streaming)
Video - The Mystery of Chaco Canyon - another good one can be purchased http://www.bullfrogfilms.com/catalog/mocc.html
Guided Activity
Begin with a simple guided tour of the program for the kids. Keep it simple
· Moving the view around
· Advancing time
· Turning on constellations
· Searching for objects, selecting, hold on object
· Ground and Atmosphere
Project
You and your team have been recruited to build an animation model for a new tourism venture. The company is selling tours of the solar system in Virtual Reality. They would like you to use Stellarium and the screen capture web site of Screen Toaster to record a travel video, modeling a virtual reality trip through the solar system. Your tour should include the following places:
• Sun.
• Planets and moons.
• Asteroids and meteors.
• Comets.
Please include the following information about the objects in the solar system.
• Size.
• Composition.
• Relative distance from the sun.
• Length of a day
• Length of a Year (not needed for asteroids and comets)
Interdisciplinary Connections
· Use myths, folktales and legends associated with constellations. (SS 7.02; ELA 2.02)
· Compare maps historically. Use graphic organizers to show influences of the known sun/moon/earth system on mapping and exploration (SS 3.02, 4.01; ELA 4.04)
· Chart the phases of the moon for a set period of time and compare the actual data with the simulation. Record the data using spreadsheets/databases (M 4.01)
Earth Science
Competency Goal 6: The learner will acquire an understanding of the earth in the solar system and its position in the universe. Objectives
6.01 Analyze the theories of the formation of the universe and solar system.
6.02 Analyze planetary motion and the physical laws that explain that motion:
• Rotation.
• Revolution.
• Apparent diurnal motions of the stars, sun and moon.
• Effects of the tilt of the earth's axis.
6.03 Examine the sources of stellar energies.
• Life cycle of stars.
• Hertzsprung - Russell Diagram.
6.04 Assess the spectra generated by stars and our sun as indicators of motion and composition (the Doppler effect).
6.05 Evaluate astronomers' use of various technologies to extend their senses:
• Optical telescopes.
• Cameras.
• Radio telescopes.
• Spectroscope.

Objective:

As a result of exploration of the universe, students will be able to cite examples from the universe that demonstrate current theories on the formation of the universe, the motion of the planets and the life cycle of stars. Activities:
  1. For background, there are many videos available on the Internet:
    1. http://www.history.com/shows/the-universe
    2. http://www.history.com/shows/the-universe
    3. http://www.history.com/shows/the-universe
    4. United Streaming has a few others as well.
  2. Planetary Motion
    1. To demonstrate Retrograde motion
      1. Set your location PLANET to Earth
  3. Stellar Motion - Diurinal Motion - Daily motion of the stars through the sky
    1. From your location (where you live) bring up a nice night sky using either the date and time or time controls.
    2. Search for Polaris (the north star) set the zoom so that you can see a good portion of the night sky.
    3. Using the time control at the bottom of the screen, advance the time in a moderate fast forward to observe the movement of the stars around Polaris. TEACHER TIP: if you see the face of a student just blinking real fast at this point, they have over clicked the fast forward and are advancing NIGHT-DAY-NIGHT-DAY-NIGHT-DAY to solve this, simply press the PLAY triangle to set the time rate to normal rate.
    4. This is not just a northern hemisphere thing. Move the location to the tip of south america and search for HIP 55657, while there is no "SOUTHERN STAR" this one is close. Be sure to turn on the constellations and point out that the students never see these that are only visible from the southern hemisphere.
  4. Using the search tool we will travel through some of the Messier catalogue of objects. This catalogue was developed by Charles Messier as objects of interest that he could see. He knew they were not stars or planets, but was not sure what some of them were as his equipment wasn't as good as todays. Thanks to hubble and some other telescopes we have beautiful pictures of most of these. Use the following web site to find targets of interest: http://seds.org/messier/
  5. The lesson plan for Earth Science includes a project that asks students to create a virtual tour of our place in the universe.

Lesson Plan Pending