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Star trek in old gym

Aspiring astronomers in Grade 8 had a unique, hands-on learning experience when the Royal Ontario Museum’s Starlab was set up in Upper Canada College’s old gym on May 27 and 28.

Planetarium 2

UCC students stand outside of Starlab.

An astronomy teacher came along for the ride to help teach a unit on earth and space science, but these classes were far from ordinary since Starlab is an inflatable dome that can accommodate a group of students around a central projector to let them experience a simulation of the stars and constellations surrounding them. A powerful fan inflates and circulates air through the dome to maintain a comfortable temperature.

Students viewed the night sky on a trip to UCC’s Norval Outdoor Education Centre and made class presentations, but entering Starlab as part of the ROM’s Travelling Planetarium program added a new element to their studies, which included investigation and exploration of: constellations; the historical and current understanding of stars and other celestial bodies; our solar system; and the universe.

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