Sharing Mars and Eclipses with Texas Camps
NASA Science Activation (SciAct) recently supported two sessions at the regional American Camp Association Texoma Conference from January 11-12, 2022 – one session on Mars Exploration and the other on the 2023-2024 solar eclipses. Presenter Christine Shupla (Lunar and Planetary Institute) conducted a variety of NASA Mars activities. She also demonstrated an interactive lesson on Solar Images from NASA eClips, as well as the NASA heliophysics Solar Pizza Scale Model – a lesson during which learners/facilitators cut out scaled images of the Sun and Earth and walk them approximately sixty-five feet apart to simultaneously show both size, scale, and distance. Former NASA education specialist, Rick Varner (now at nearby Scobee Education Center), who came highly recommended by SciAct's NASA Heliophysics Education Activation Team (HEAT), assisted with the eclipse session and demonstrated how to make a pinhole camera to safely view the Sun. As a result of these efforts, the 30+ camp managers and program staff in attendance will be able to conduct a variety of NASA hands-on activities with their campers, are more familiar with potential contacts and resources to plan activities and events in the future, and are better prepared to hold events at their camps during the upcoming solar eclipses.