Are you as excited as we are??
On August 21, 2017, millions of people from coast to coast across the United States will be able to see a total solar eclipse for the first time since 1918. Eclipses have been called “breathtaking,” “once in a lifetime,” and “unlike anything you’ve ever experienced”. In the path of totality, for approximately two minutes, the Earth will be dark as the moon completely covers the sun. During this time, you will be able to see the sun’s atmosphere, called the corona. Cloudless skies permitting, stars and even planets you’ve never seen will be visible as day turns to night, a sight not to be repeated for years to come.
Outside of the path of totality, it will still be possible to observe a partial solar eclipse, where the moon covers part of the sun. Because the path of totality runs through fourteen US states, this event has been dubbed the Great American Eclipse. However, lots of people in other parts of North America, South America, Africa, and Europe will get a glimpse of a partial eclipse as well.
Want to learn more? DreamUp wants to make sure you have access to fantastic resources to help you get prepared for this incredible, once-in-a-lifetime event!
More information on the eclipse:
- University of Colorado, Boulder’s free, 5-week Coursera course on the science behind the sun and the Great American Eclipse
- “Will I go blind?”: 20 questions about the total solar eclipse you were too embarrassed to ask from Vox
- Eclipse maps, fact sheets, posters, and more available for download from NASA
- A simulator from Google and University of California, Berkeley that shows you what the 2017 solar eclipse will look like in your area
- If you’re stuck indoors, the New York Times shows how you can still experience the magic of the solar eclipse
- The New York Times has some tips for planning a last-minute eclipse trip
- A great viewing guide from the National Science Teachers’ Association to find out how to watch the eclipse
Resources for educators:
- How to make the August 21 Great American Eclipse an incredible STEM lesson
- An awesome plan from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory about integrating math into learning about the Great American Eclipse
- A helpful list of Great American Eclipse resources for educators tied to Next Generation Science Standards from The American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics
- How to make a quick and safe solar-eclipse viewer
Make sure to get some eclipse glasses if you plan on observing the eclipse! These special glasses protect your eyes from the sun and are easily found and purchased online (but please make sure they meet the proper ISO 12312-2 international safety standards).
For more advice on solar eclipse safety, visit NASA’s eclipse safety page, and see the American Astronomical Society’s list of reputable vendors of solar filters and viewers.