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Thread: Elementary School Outreach attempt

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    Default Elementary School Outreach attempt



    I finally was able to get together with the president of our local astronomy club to do an outreach event for a local elementary school. They were having a math/science night and invited us to bring a few telescopes to let the kids look through.

    However, the clouds must have connections with the CIA and tapped into our email conversation, because they came out in full force tonight. In fact, it even started sprinkling while I was on my way to the event. Upon arrival, we quickly set up under an awning, in the hopes that the sky would clear at least enough for us to show off the Moon. Unfortunately, it never happened.

    So, we showed the youngsters the only things we could:

    CLOUDY NIGHT OBSERVING LIST:
    * flagpole
    * tree branch
    * power transformer on utility pole a block away



    The kids were disappointed in not getting to see the Moon, but still thought it was cool to see the telescopes. I brought my Z12 and my little Tasco Starguide 60mm refractor. They enjoyed seeing the little refractor move automatically when I punched in a Messier object on the controller, and they liked to compare the view in my Z12's finderscope versus the main telescope.

    The club president brought his homemade 8" ball scope, which was also a hit. He used a 5-gallon bucket for his mount.

    We had 30-40 kids come by and look through all the telescopes, and had a couple of parents sign up to join our club email list, so it was a success, despite not getting to see a single astronomical object.
    Tom Campbell (astro.tomandjul.com)

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    SCOPES: Zhumell Z12 f/5 (Zoomie), Discovery DHQ-8 f/6, Tasco Starguide 60 f/11.7, Meade AS80 f/5 (Cutie) BINOS: 10x50, 16x50, 10x70
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    AL Awards: Messier, Double Star, Bino Messier, Planetary Transit

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    Default Re: Elementary School Outreach attempt

    I feel for you.
    It took 3 weeks before we had the first clear night to hold our presentation to the Youth Group.
    But perseverance paid off and we setup 3 viewing stations and handed out Binoculars to the kids waiting for a peek.

    I scheduled 4 more events and 3 were a success!
    It's great to hear all the ohs and Ahhs!
    Two of the Boys, now older send me messages when they hear of a occurrence to view something special.
    This summer we are planning a trip to a dark sight and camp out till sunrise.
    Rich (Filterxpert)

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    Default Re: Elementary School Outreach attempt

    Well, darn. But, it sounds like an amazing time despite the cloud trouble.

    Good effort, Tom!

    Adding your list of targets to my "to do" list.
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    Default Re: Elementary School Outreach attempt

    Great job putting together a successful outreach event, attendance wise at least. Sucks bout the clouds. I guess they like to target children as well. Hopefully you can get another one together when it is clear.
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    Default Re: Elementary School Outreach attempt

    Way to make lemonade out of those clouds! Well done.
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    Default Re: Elementary School Outreach attempt

    A great effort Tom, hopefully it will work out better net time.
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    Default Re: Elementary School Outreach attempt

    Great job done, Tom. Wish that those wonderful kids will be luckier in next outing.

    Clear skies
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    Default Re: Elementary School Outreach attempt

    Well you gave it a valiant try Tom, but sometimes the clouds will win. But never underestimate the enjoyment of simply seeing scopes or a distant power transformer! Kids still remember the fun of the gathering and talking about science and getting to look through both small and large scopes. I am sure the curiosity of the ball scope using a bucket for a base made an impression, showing them that there is still plenty of room in the hobby for alternative methods of building simple yet effective scopes.
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    Default Re: Elementary School Outreach attempt

    Tom, just showing the kids the scopes and seeing what the views look like through them, even terrestrial targets, should get youngsters pretty excited about telescopes. If not for astronomy, then at least as spotting scopes.
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    Default Re: Elementary School Outreach attempt

    Thanks, everyone! One of the teachers took a few photos of us, and I was hoping to get a copy, but sadly, she left before I could get her name or give her my email address. I asked our contact at the school about it, so we'll see if she can be tracked down.

    Terry, I'm trying to picture someone out in the woods using a Z12 as a spotting scope. "Dang, Bubba, that deer is CLOSE! Shoot it quick while it's caught hanging upside down in the trees."
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