Solar Eclipse 2017

So, if you’re like me, you waited until the last minute to think about checking out the solar eclipse on Monday, August 21st.  Now it is too late to get Solar Eclipse glasses for safe watching, so what do you do?

If you live in the New York area, you can visit the Hudson River Museum in Yonkers.  They will have some activities starting at noon and at 1 pm you can watch a live stream of the eclipse from Oregon.

You can also check out NASA’s website for live streaming at home.

From what I’ve checked out, you can record the eclipse with your smart phone, you might get better results with some different camera apps.

We are going to try sun paper and a pin hole camera.  I’m not sure how well this will work, but getting the kids to experiment and explore is the main point of this exercise.  Even though we will not see a total eclipse in New York, this is still an important event and my kids, who are crazy about the solar system, will have some sort of recording of this day.

To make a pin hole camera you need a box, duct tape, a piece of aluminum foil ( about 2″ x 2″), a 2″ x 2″ inch piece of black paper, and a pin.  Cut a small hole in on one side of the box and tape the aluminum foil over the hole.  Carefully, with a pin, poke a hole in the foil.  Tape the black square of paper over the pinhole.  Tape the photo paper (or in this case, the sun paper, no promises on the results!) inside the box on the opposite side of the pinhole and close the box.  When ready, aim the pinhole at the object (in this case, the solar eclipse, without looking directly at the sun) and remove the black paper.  We are going to take several photos, and we will try several different exposure times starting with 30 seconds (30 seconds, 1 minute, 1 1/2 minutes, 2 minutes, etc.) and finishing with 4 minutes.  The great thing about sun paper is that you only need water to develop the image, no chemicals.  Perfect when working with kids.  We’ll keep you updated on the results.

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