Planetarium Set Up At Staples


Farrel Leve800px-pleiades_largenson ’11
Opinions Editor

On Wednesday, May 27, a planetarium was set up on the second story bridge at Staples and was open during periods six and seven. This bubble-like structure was found in a storage closet in the science wing and was set up by the teacher and a few students from the astronomy class.

A student in the class, Rachel Sanflippo ’09, noted that the class had wanted to take a field trip, but instead the planetarium is “kind of [their] makeshift activity for the end of the year.”

“Our class knows a lot about planets and the universe and we want others to learn about it too,” said Sanflippo in reference to the planetarium which can seat up to 27 people around its sides.

Astronomy teacher Carrie Udall finds the planetarium useful, noting “what I hope to do next year is use it for classes.” Canisters can be changed in the planetarium, allowing different images to be projected on the walls and different astronomy topics to be taught.

According to Udall, the planetarium can help students practice finding constellations, among other topics, and there are worksheets and quizzes to go along with it. In addition, the constellation-finding practice can prepare the astronomy students for visiting Rolnick Observatory, the town’s local observatory.

During periods six and seven, students from outside the class were able to crawl into the planetarium and view different images, from the stars to pictures of Greek mythology. Some even got to learn a bit as Mrs. Udall used a laser pointer to note different constellations.

“I like astrology, so I thought it was really fascinating,” said Ana Corn ’12, who had an opportunity to visit the planetarium during period seven.

There will be “another setup next week outside the cafe so more people can experience it,” said Udall.