Public Libraries Celebrate the First Images from the James Webb Space Telescope
Public libraries partnering with the NASA@ My Library project are celebrating the July, 2022 arrival of the Webb Telescope’s first images through community programs and activities. They hosted events with subject matter experts (SMEs) explaining the Webb Telescope, how infrared telescopes work, and, in the case of NASA@ My Library’s student SMEs, the coding that goes into the reporting data from the telescope. A substantial portion (45%) of the participating libraries were located in rural communities. The majority of activity based programs (>70%) were attended by elementary-aged youth while the libraries hosted Subject Matter Experts for both adult programs and a few geared toward children and families. Families attended 60% of the programs together. Libraries were able to connect art to the science in many of their programs, bringing together families to celebrate the amazing images the telescope produced and reaching 2,000+ patrons.
“We had a wonderful experience! We had a painting program inspired by Webb's first images (and the Webb telescope itself). It was attended by both children and adults; all seemed to enjoy creating their works of art, which came out beautifully!” Library Staff member, New Brunswick Public Library, NJ
To get a sense of and experience the kinds activities and resources developed and conducted by NASA@ My Library and their library partners, check out this "Unboxing" webinar for the James Webb Space Telescope First Image STEAM Activity Toolkit, featuring activities such as "Improv with the Stars!", "Multiwavelength Bingo", "Filtered Light", and "NASA's James Webb Space Telescope Model": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vxzkmtCRswc
The NASA@ My Library project is supported by NASA under cooperative agreement award number NNX16AE30A and is part of NASA’s Science Activation Portfolio. Please visit https://science.nasa.gov/science-activation-team/nasa-at-my-library to learn more.