New Horizons will be Broadcasting It’s Fly-By of Ultima Thule on January 1, 2019

  Many people are aware that New Horizons will be taking pictures, and collecting data as it passes close by the Kuiper Belt object commonly known as Ultima Thule (2014 MU6) on January 1, 2019.  It will be passing closer to Ultima Thule than it has come to any other object since it launched from

By |December 31st, 2018|Categories: astronomy, General, NASA, News, Science, Space Exloration, Uncategorized|Tags: , |0 Comments

Lessons Learned from Camp Cosmos

            How do you decide if an event is a success? Usually the number of people in attendance is a good indicator, and one that the state wants us to report. But what if you only have three people from your intended audience attend? Can you still call that a successful

Seeing Stars!

Indoor astronomy is a great way to light up the night! We recently did that, both figuratively and literally. I have done a fairly large number of astronomy programs in the past 5 or 6 years, both with and without the library's 8" Dobsonian telescope; both indoors and out. I want these programs to be

Planet Hoppers

When we first learned we’d be hosting the Explore Space exhibit from STAR_Net at our library this fall, we spent quite a bit of time browsing through program ideas and how-tos as we started to formulate our program schedule. Each month at our library, we offer an elementary-age STEAM program called Be the Scientist--and we

By |November 28th, 2017|Categories: Elementary Aged, Math, Space Exloration, Spacial Thinking, STEM|1 Comment

Building an ISS Model

Our library is hosting the Explore Space: A Cosmic Journey exhibit* for the next two months, and as part of this special exhibit we have lined up several space-themed STEAM programs for youth in grades K-5. One of our first programs took place before the exhibit’s opening: a challenge-based family program where the goal was

By |October 27th, 2017|Categories: Elementary Aged, Engineering, Informal Learning, NASA, Science, Space Exloration, STEM|0 Comments

What is an Eclipse, Anyway? Create an Eclipse to Prepare for the Eclipse

Like most everyone in the country, I'm getting ready for the eclipse.  The local science museum, about a mile away from my branch, will be hosting a viewing on the lawn on the day of the eclipse.  But me?... I'll be driving wherever I have to go to see totality.  I have my glasses (the

Stargazer Nights at Skokie Public Library

Here at Skokie Public Library, one of our favorite seasonal recurring events is our Stargazer Night program. While we first started these all-ages programs in the spring of 2015 in conjunction with an exploration of microcosms and macrocosms in our BOOMbox, we’ve continued offering 5 or 6 of these programs each year. Here’s what we

Hands-on STEM: Scale Model of Sun and Earth

While we all know that the Sun is very big and very far away, its actual size and distance from Earth can be hard concepts to grasp. Many Solar System models that we see inaccurately display the relative size of the Sun compared to the planets, and almost all models inaccurately display the true distance

Penumbral Lunar Eclipse!

What exactly is a penumbral  lunar eclipse? We recently had the good fortune to be able to explore this in a library program. In a rare event, several circumstances aligned to allow us the opportunity to talk about eclipses, view one as it happened, and help build excitement for the upcoming solar eclipse. Even though

Edible Rocks??? Definitely!

         The Lunar and Planetary Institute has done it again!  They have developed another delicious educational experience to share with libraries and educators - Edible Rocks. Who would want to try to eat a rock?  Just about everyone, when the "rocks" are chocolate bars, "Three Musketeers" (the candy, not the book or movie), "Nestle

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