Drawing of Saturn by Mary Ann Lugo


Space Science for Teachers

University of Virginia

Department of Astronomy and
The Curry School of Education


Information for Current Participants

Workshop Description


Contact Information

Resources for Teachers

Summer 2014 Workshop

  • The Space Science for Teachers workshop is a professional development workshop for teachers in grades 4-9.
  • The course will run on June 23 to July 3, 2014 at the University of Virginia.
  • There will be at least three evening observing sessions from 7:30-10:30 p.m. (the evenings depend on when we have clear skies)8:00-11:00 p.m.
  • You will develop new knowledge and skills that will help you more effectively address the Virginia Standards of Learning related to astronomy, the nature of science, and space science.
  • The workshop will allow you to use readily available innovative technologies to learn the night sky, plus strategies to help your students experience firsthand the beauty and wonder of the night sky.
  • The instructors will demonstrate how to use your new knowledge and skills to teach space science and astronomy in an effective, hands-on, inquiry-based manner.
  • The workshop schedule includes
    • Inquiry-based classes on space science and astronomy content
    • Instruction on innovative methods for teaching space science.
    • Time for developing your own lesson plans to address specific space science related SOLs.
    • Hands-on practice with a variety of telescopes under the night sky.
    • A session in the StarLab inflatable planetarium.
  • You will receive 3 hours of graduate credit in astronomy (ASTR 5740)
  • You will receive $100 in classroom equipment, including:
    • An astronomy textbook
    • Stellarium planetarium program
    • Teaching the Nature of Science Through Process Skills by Randy Bell, a resource book on teaching the nature of science
    • Resources containing astronomy activities and lessons including
      • Universe at Your Fingertips by the Astronomical Society of the Pacific
      • More Universe at Your Fingertips by the Astronomical Society of the Pacific
      • Cycles Book by Jay Ryan
      • Edmund Scientifics Mag 5 Star Atlas
    • A Miller Planisphere
    • Other materials
      • spectrometer
      • celestial sphere
      • scale model solar system
      • holographic diffraction grating film
  • Free housing at a local hotel for teachers that cannot commute each day (double occupancy).
    • If you prefer a single hotel room, the grant will cover 1/2 of the cost (cost to you is about $45 per night for a single).
  • Modest stipend for food


  • Attend all daily sessions and evenins sessions
  • Develop lesson plans and activities and try them out in your classroom
  • Complete all online assignments and activities
  • Graduate credit requires a reduced tuition of $150. Please check with your school division on reimbursement policies for professional development courses. Your school division may cover some or all of the cost.



Virginia Space Grant Consortium Logo

Funds for this project were provided by the Virginia Space Grant Consortium.