Friday, February 18, 2011

Journey Through the Universe

This week was "Journey Through the Universe" week in Hilo, which is the coolest week of science outreach in K-12 schools you'll find just about anywhere. 40+ different people from the sciences visited 270 different classes throughout the area, and there were also some family science events for the public.

We had people from the University, a bunch of the Mauna Kea Observatories, the Mauna Kea Visitor Information Station, 'Imiloa Astronomy Center, and even two different parts of NASA! One of the busiest presenters not only works for NASA, but is the science advisor for Battle Star Galactica on TV.

I got to go to schools for the first time, and had a lot of fun talking to nine different classes of K-3 kids at six schools in town about my job, telescopes, computers, space, and... everything else. Like why space programs used chimps instead of giraffes or elephants.  The bigger kids got to talk to people who know more than me. :)

Although Hilo has a lot of astronomy people, "Journey" isn't just about astronomy - it's about exposing kids to Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) in general, by having people whose jobs involve those things visit classrooms and talk about the cool things you can do with STEM.

There are actually 9 other areas across the country that have "Journey" every year - if your schools don't have it yet, you can find out all about it at:

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