Astro History: Dueling Over How the Heavens Go

Dates: July 23 -August 3, 2018
Cost: $700.00

Everyone knows the world is round and goes around the sun, but for thousands of years this was not the case. Who were the people that changed our place in the universe and how did they do it? In this module, you will take a step back in time to recreate the experiments and costumes of early astronomers and then present a living history reenactment of the discoveries that placed us on a planet moving around a star. This means, for example, you get to take on the role of Tycho Brache, a Danish astronomer who lost his nose in a duel, and explain his observation of the night sky in the style he might have. Along the way you will get to plot sun spots, learn the constellations using a planetarium, and even roast hot dogs using the sun. Now is your chance to get closer to the night sky and the history that made our modern world possible. 

 Apply here - Link only works during application period, February 1 through April 15

Meet the Instructors

Geneva Mottet, Masters student in Physics, University of Alaska Fairbanks

I have been an amateur astronomer for almost 20 years and believe it is like fine cheese, it gets better with age. I bought my first good telescope when I was 11 years old and learned the night sky through books and adult mentors in Astronomy 4-H. The mythology of constellations and stories of those early astronomers that used observations to change our place in the universe made me want to become a scientist. By high school, I was regularly attending statewide star parties, think Woodstock for nerds held on the top of a mountain and made astronomy posters that looked something like my friends’ boyband posters of my 17th Century idles. When I grew up, I earned a physics degree from The Evergreen State College in Washington State and am now working on a Master’s in Physics at University of Alaska Fairbanks. In my spare time, I do historical recreations and reenactment and have a wide range of crafty hobbies. 

Chris Eckerson, Bachelor's Degree in Physics, University of Alaska 

As someone who is actively involved in outreach, I have had the joy of participating in community events such as stargazing events hosted by UAF SPS club, which give members in the Fairbanks the chance to explore the night skies with Newtonian telescopes, exciting young and old alike with awe and questions as they gaze upon celestial objects hundreds of millions of kilometers away (such as Jupiter and its moons!).  Participating in Science Potpourri numerous years as well, I have seen the transformational experience of active-learning for youth.  As the director of a local outdoor educational program, I have seen first-hand how these sorts of exploratory learning and play are essential to youth enjoying and maintaining a lasting learning experience. Whether it is the incredibly small or exceptionally large, physics has provided insight into my understanding and curiosity of the world around us.    It is my passion to being able to share this experience through educational opportunities and outreach that has allowed others the joy of discovery as well.”



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