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Summer astronomy program for middle school students offered at Grinnell College

Published: Thursday, July 11, 2013 11:10 a.m. CDT • Updated: Thursday, July 11, 2013 11:12 a.m. CDT

GRINNELL — A short, informal astronomy course for middle school students will be offered at the Grant O. Gale Observatory of Grinnell College at 8 p.m. Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday.

The program is for students who will be in the sixth, seventh or eighth grade in the fall of 2013. Students who will be in the ninth grade also will be accepted if space permits. Each student may bring one adult assistant.

The Summer Astronomy Program will provide an opportunity for students to find out more about the universe both by participating in presentations, activities and discussions, and by observing astronomical objects using the telescope at the observatory. Each of the sessions will begin with an introduction to some ideas, followed by an observing session (weather permitting). The program schedule is as follows:

• Monday, “Planets”: What are planets like? What makes a planet suitable for life? Is there life elsewhere in our solar system, or in other solar systems?

• Tuesday, “Stars”: What makes stars shine? Where do stars come from and why do some of them end their lives as black holes? What kinds of stars might have planets that could support life? 

• Wednesday, “Galaxies and the Universe”: What is the universe like? How much do we know about where it came from and what will happen to it in the future? 

Each session will last approximately two hours. Although participants are encouraged to attend all three sessions, partial attendance is acceptable. There is no charge for the program. For more information, contact Bob Cadmus at (641) 269-3016 or cadmus@grinnell.edu.

The Grant O. Gale Observatory is located on the Grinnell College campus at 1203 10th Ave. Grinnell welcomes and encourages the participation of people with disabilities. Information on parking and accessibility is available on the college website. Accommodation requests may be made to Conference Operations at (641) 269-3235 or calendar@grinnell.edu.

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