“We’re made of star stuff. We are a way for the cosmos to know itself.”
This year, Our Space Our Future partners NUCLIO joined forces again with the IAC (Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias) to organise the seventh edition of the Astronomy Education Adventure in the Canary Islands. This is a five day summer school where teachers and science communicators come together to learn how to bring the majesty of space research and cosmic exploration back to Earth, and into the classroom.
This year’s event was held totally online, featuring talks, virtual tours of IAC facilities at the Teide Observatory (Tenerife), and workshops from experts from across the field, introducing the participants to key space science concepts and showing them how to combine these with teaching methods in new and innovative ways!
These sessions included sessions on: how to create your own planetarium experience with Stellarium, an overview of Robotic Telescopes, How to hunt for asteroids and a session on how to approach teaching these topics within a classroom setting, led by our very own Rosa Doran from NUCLIO. This session included an overview of the Our Space Our Future, detailing the aims of the project. The session was attended by a global audience of 65 participants, who all received a virtual “goodie bag” featuring a selection of the teaching resources that are available on the OSOF website, including career illustration, gifs, and colouring in pages (obviously for the children).
The theme of this year’s summer school was “Our home in the cosmic ocean” to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the iconic TV series “ Cosmos: a Personal Voyage” created by astrophysicists and science communicator Carl Sagan. To many, the work of Sagan was a gateway to science and to the stars. Our Space Our Future project hopes to carry on and expand on this legacy, by showing the next generation that Space is for everyone! But we can not do that by ourselves, and that is why these collaborative events are the key to safeguarding the next generation of big thinkers and big doers, be that out in space, or a little closer to home.
So watch this space for news of further collaborations and resources, and of course year eight of the Astronomy Education Adventure in the Canary Islands summer school.