Attention: Registration for Experience Astronomy closes on Saturday, August 27, 2016!
A hundred years ago when I was in college, I took an astronomy course. It was in the spring, which was perfect timing for it, and I remember the enjoyment of spending evening classes stargazing out in the crisp air of upstate New York. (when spring finally comes to that region after those long, brutal winters, it. is. heavenly!) However, other than the North Star, and the big and little dippers, I really haven’t retained much of whatever I was learning.
Around our home, our skies are often crystal clear at night and we can see a ton of stars, and I always wish I knew more to teach my kids about it and enjoy it more myself.
True Confessions: A few years ago we got a telescope for Christmas, and can I just admit to you that we, like, totally stink at using it? On the occasions when we have taken it out to the back yard, we have rarely ever been able to see –anything– other than complete and utter darkness. Yes, We Are *That* Family.
I’ve looked at (and even purchased) some astronomy books, but never felt like they were user-friendly enough for me. So, maybe you can imagine my excitement when I found out about Experience Astronomy*!
My 4 homeschooled kids and I have been taking Experience Astronomy* during this school year. My favorite part is that it doesn’t solely run on Mom Power, which is a major WooHoo moment for me! Instructor Luke Gilkerson does all the teaching via video classes online, and as you can see in the video below, he has a very engaging style of communication. My guys enjoy his teaching style and I’ve enjoyed getting to be a learning participant instead of having to totally run the show myself.
Thankfully, we don’t need to get our telescope out and struggle to find Venus. All of the star gazing is done with our own eyes and nothing else. And hey–pretty much all the time we can find our eyeballs, so that’s a win for us! The observation assignments happen from our own back yard, too, so that’s great too.
Additionally, the class integrates astronomy with history, literature, and even the Bible, all of which makes perfect sense. I love to have my kids experience learning as it relates to other things!
What Does Experience Astronomy Cover?
The e-course integrates astronomy with others subjects, such as history, classical literature, and the Bible. Throughout the year students learn:
- how to use the sky for navigation,
- how to find dozens of major constellations,
- the phases of the moon,
- the motions of the stars throughout the night and throughout the year,
- how eclipses work,
- how astronomy has shaped both the Biblical calendar and our modern calendar,
- information about the planets, asteroids, comets, and meteor showers,
- mythologies associated with the constellations,
- and more!
Experience Astronomy is a full-school year video e-course geared towards 6th to 9th graders. (I actually beefed this course up to make it a full science credit for my two high schoolers.)
- Starting in September your students will look forward to the engaging, weekly teaching videos.
- Students will receive a field guide and are expected to complete weekly outdoor observation activities, giving them a firsthand knowledge about the motions of the sun, moon, stars, and planets.
- A course guide with supplemental reading, writing activities, and more will be provided.
- Weekly online quizzes to test your students understanding of the materials will be provided. Don’t worry, the grading will be done for you!
I know I’m not the only mom that is looking for quality classes that can also take some of the pressure off, so I figured you all would want to know about this too.
What do you think? Have you studied astronomy in your past or with your kids? Are you going to take the class and join us in Experiencing Astronomy? 🙂
Preview the first couple lessons, or go here to get answers to some of frequently asked questions.
Why Experience Astronomy? from Intoxicated on Life on Vimeo.
*Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
I’m quite sure that this is the course I got so excited about and then found it wasn’t suitable for Australia. But for all you Northern Hemispherical homeschoolers, do look at this course!