View Full Version here: : kids astronomy/ SA star parties??
19-01-2011, 12:09 PM
Would anyone happen to know if there is any kind of astronomy club for kids?
I have a 11 year old who loves astronomy and with our big dob purchase getting ever closer ( albeit very slowly) I thought I would see if there was such a thing? I have tried looking for online kids things etc there seems to be nothing like this ...and certainly not in SA, or do the astronomy club viewing nights have much of a family/kiddie turn out at all? have yet to attend one but if they do thats a bonus too.:question:
19-01-2011, 12:28 PM
"Kids astronomy" is, from my experience, is school based on the most part. Either the school organises an excursion to an observatory, or an Astro Night is organised on site where other amateur astronomers bring their scopes.
We have a young fellow about your son's age come with his old man to the star parties we hold at Katoomba, 2 hours west of Sydney. The two of them have a scope each, the youngster with an 8" dob all of his own!
We love having him there. He isn't shy about being forward, and his enthusiasm is pulpable ALL night. He's become a part of the furniture really.
We've also had upto 5 kids attend our star parties with their folks.
We do our best to accomodate them and share our passion for this hobby with them. They are in many instances more than capable of grasping what can be very abstract physics principles better than most adults because of their fresh relationship with school science.
I held a star party at my wife's preschool a couple of years ago. I'm not kidding when I say that the 4 year olds had a better grasp of astronomy than MOST of the parents.
I'd encourage you to take you son to a star party, held by an astro club or by other IIS members, whether you have a scope or not. You'll both gain a lot from the experience, and be able to make valuble contacts. You might also be able to organise an astro night at your son's school with these contacts, ;) . Some clubs even have scopes that you can borrow. And folks at astro clubs and star parties on the most part are only too happy to welcome "fresh blood" :lol: .
If you've got binoculars, take them along too. These are magnificent astronomical instruments (I always have them with me, at home or at a dark site).
19-01-2011, 01:32 PM
:lol: I dont doubt that the kids pick it up faster than the adults when we do get ours I will prob have to have my daughter teach me how to work it! As I had never been to a viewing night I didnt like to turn up with kids in toe without finding out if other kids go to them or not so im more keen to attend the next one at the local observatory now!!
We do have binoculars so that may be a good start then.
My kids would love star parties esp if there are other kids there so I
will keep my eye out for anything in SA :thumbsup:
19-01-2011, 01:40 PM
If you do take your binos, ask for a helping hand to find those "gems" of the sky. Some binos have a thread in them to allow them to be attached to a camera tripod via a little adaptor that you can get from ebay for around $10 posted to your door. It can be easier to handle to binos as even resting them on some car roof for an extended period.
As for S.A. parties, you can either start a new thread asking for non club ones, or, easier still, just modify the title of this thread to include the question! There are a lot of IIS member in S.A.
Have you tried the Double Helix Club, we have held viewing nights for them in the past.
19-01-2011, 03:49 PM
:rofl:funny you should say that my daughter and I were just looking at the site this morn and we signed up for emails from them, they look good will be looking into membership for her
19-01-2011, 04:16 PM
Hey, I'm in SA myself. I attended my first public viewing a few weeks ago.
I recommend assa.org.au
The viewing I went to was at the heights highschool. Plenty of kids around. Some were students, most were children brought by parents, between 2 and 12.
The members were more than happy to show the kiddies all the interesting things that could be seen that night, and they even got to look through a 'proper' observatory scope in a dome.
19-01-2011, 08:27 PM
Thanks you have no idea how concerned I was at the idea of taking my 3 year old with us to the modbury one as we are only ten mins from there and really wanted to go to that last one think it was 14th jan? but I wasnt sure if it was suitable to take such young kids mine are 3, 8, 11 :rolleyes:, feel much better about attending the next one now!
19-01-2011, 11:06 PM
I am an ASSA member and I have taken my daughter to public and members nights and she loves it. You would both be very welcome to come along.
In the past ASSA have held viewing nights with the double helix club and as far as I know will do so again.
Contact all the clubs in the Adelaide area to see if they have a junior section.
The Astronomical Society of Victoria has a junior section that meets on a regular basis on a Friday night. Maybe one of your local clubs has one too.
20-01-2011, 12:13 AM
Your restraint and concern for other visitors is greatly appreciated. I only wish the woman who brought her 1-2 year old into the dome with a glow stick, and did next to nothing to stop the kid from swinging it around and copping me in the face repeatedly, took as much care. :rolleyes:
Aside from that, the kids were fine. Having a ball... outside, where there was plenty of space to mess about, oohing and ahhing over the pretty stars. As it should be. :thumbsup:
20-01-2011, 09:20 AM
Thanks for all the advice, I think joining assa and double helix club are well worth it by the sound of it! its great that vic have a junior section if we dont have one here i hope eventually there is enough interest for them to have one. Will have a good look if there is anything here.
adam some parents a!:lol: i would be horrified if my kids did that but im a tad paranoid....mostly cos my 3 yr old has a wild streak so i tend to fear public outtings but we wouldnt be allowing glowsticks or hitting!
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