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Preparing for the Solar Eclipse in the Middle School Classroom

Sunday, June 11th 

Ooptional Sunday night star party (weather dependent)

Monday, June 12th 

Morning: 8:45 am Introductions and overview of the day.

MyNASA Data 

NASA offers petabytes of global Earth science data collected from satellites but accessing these data in a traditional (or virtual) science classroom can be tricky. Since 2004, My NASA Data has supported students and teachers of grades 3-12 in analyzing and interpreting NASA mission data. My NASA Data as we strive to support your integration of authentic Earth data in your instruction. This session will be led by MyNASA Data Content Manager and Senior Outreach Coordinator/Supervisor, NASA LaRC: Angela (Angie) Rizzi

Observing the Sun During a Total Solar Eclipse 

Calculating Ratios of an Eclipse


The Gravity/Universe Model 

Adapted from a Saturday Morning Astrophysics at Purdue lesson, this lesson will help us understand gravity and model the distortion of spacetime. This session will be led by  Physics and Astronomy's K-12 Outreach Coordinator, David Sederberg. 

Exoplanets with Arduinos   

How do we know that there are exoplanets out there? Well, in this activity David Sederberg will help us understand one way that scientists detect exoplanets.  

Teacher Handout

Student Handout


More to Light Than Meets the Eye

We can see all the colors of visible light. But did you know light contains many more wavelengths than just what we can see? We use these wavelengths every day. Scientists. Use these wavelengths to research and in remote sensing to find out about many objects such as our sun. For this activity, we will look at what makes white light.

See the lesson plan on the Measuring Visible Light page



Solar Telescope  / Pinhole Viewers  

How to Safely Observe an Eclipse

2024 Total Solar Eclipse - NASA Pinhole Projector (.zip file) 


 The outreach team will show a number of different ways to view the sun at the moment as well as during the eclipse.


Department of Physics and Astronomy will have solar telescopes out and lead us in understanding aspects of the Sun.



Tuesday, June 13th 

Morning8:45 am Overview of the day

Scale model of Earth, Moon, and Sun 

Just how far away is the /moon or the Sun from us? David Sederberg will help us get a sense of scale and model a fun activity to do outside with A LOT of space! 

Link to the activity

Moon phases board 

Adapted from The EAPS Virtual Passport Day program, this activity will create a board that students can place over their heads to visualize the moon's phases. This session will be led by Chemistry K-12 Outreach Coordinator Sarah Nern.  Link to moon phases board lesson page


 GLOBE Cloud training 

The sun affects many of Earth's systems. In the session, Angie Rizzi and Sarah Nern go through some GLOBE activities to help us understand clouds. 

Why (not) So Blue 

 Why not so Blue activity  Set up for Why not so Blue activity

Link to Sky Conditions mat

Estimating Clouds:

Paper activity  Virtual version 

GLOBE Observer App

Screenshot-2023-06-12-195414.pngYep, we have an app for that! Angie Rizzi and Sarah Nern team up again to help us learn how to use the GLOBE Observer app and use it to have students collect data. 

Instructions for eTraining:

Make a teacher account and complete the Introduction to GLOBE training. For organization: Please select Purdue V-School

STEP 1: Complete Introduction to GLOBE; Download the module and complete the Assessment Test.
STEP 2: Complete Introduction to Atmosphere (or any of the Intro to “Sphere”)
STEP 3: Complete ONE additional module for that sphere listed under the Intro to Sphere (Clouds, Precipitation, Aerosols, etc)
Download the GLOBE Observer app

GLOBE Observer on the App Store 

GLOBE Observer - Apps on Google Play

Looking Deeper into Atmospheric Science 

From particulate matter to celebrating simple instruments, our team will take us through a number of activities. 
Up in the Air 

Calibrate a thermometer


Overview of My NASA Data website organization 

Angie Rizzi will give us a guided tour of using the My NASA Data resources and help us understand how to use and incorporate some of the vast amounts of data the is available from NASA .

MyNASA Data Solar Eclipse Story Map

In this story map lesson students will learn how living with a star can teach us about our universe. Through a series of learning activities, students will examine the benefits and hazards of living with a star, describe and/or demonstrate how we use eclipses to study the Sun and its features and investigate how our Sun may be used to learn about other stars and our universe. 

Data literacy cubes

My NASA Data Literacy Cubes can be used to guide students’ exploration of graphs, data tables, and mapped images of NASA Earth science data. They help students develop their Data Analysis and Interpretation skills, as well as help them to recognize patterns, cause & effect, stability & change, and more.

Discuss the “Day of the Eclipse” plan safety

This session will cover many aspects of safety for schools, students, and communities during an eclipse. 

maxresdefault.gifWatch and Share Rafael’s SOS episode!

Creating student accounts 

Having students collect data during an eclipse or just as part of a project can be a great learning experience for them. Sarah and Angie will guide us in how to create a GLOBE account for our students to collect and input data for projects.  Create and Manage Student accounts 

4:00 p.m. Exit ticket 

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