I am a big science geek. And as a homeschooling parent, I have been given a huge gift that happens to coincide with my children’s first day of school. The 2017 total solar eclipse will be the first visible in the United States in 38 years, and Columbia is one of the best places on the planet to experience it.
If you plan on making the eclipse part of your homeschooling curriculum, here are ten ideas to make the most out of the big event!
There’s an App for That …
This is a free app for your iPhone or iPad, and lets you and your child learn all about the sun. There are hands-on learning activities included (along with supply lists) as well as videos and images. This app is a great one to use and play around with any time, but especially with the upcoming eclipse.
This app will let you record changes in atmospheric conditions at various points during the eclipse, and share them with scientists who will study the findings!
Make observations about plants and animals and how they react to the eclipse. After downloading the app, follow the steps for the days leading up to August 21, then record your observations.
Eclipse Lessons for All Ages
Check out some great ideas from NASA that will let you incorporate the eclipse into any subject matter! They have put together materials that will let you make the most of your lessons, particularly if you are doing a unit study.
Activities at Home
Teachers Pay Teachers is one of my favorite homeschooling resources. You will need to create an account, and then will have access to great resources and materials created by teachers. I found multiple lessons for young children about eclipses, some of them under $5, including worksheets and lapbook materials.
Videos for Kids
YouTube is a great resource for any homeschooling family, and you can find tons of videos geared towards young learners to help them understand more about the eclipse.
Head to the Library
Both Richland and Lexington County libraries are holding events and activities leading up to the eclipse. Check out their event pages to take advantage of the many learning and fun activities each has planned!
NASA has put together some great arts and crafts ideas for all ages. Some of these art projects can even be posted and shared on their website.
Make your own quick and easy pinhole camera with materials around the house. This will allow you to safely view the eclipse from anywhere.
This is a fun interactive activity that helps students understand relative size of objects in space. It’s a great way explain what’s happening in space as we watch from home!