Summer Camp at Santiago Japanese School

On January 22, 2015, the Santiago Japanese School held a regular summer camp and star watching party for children in the lower grades of elementary school (23 students from first to fourth grades). Professor Seiji Kameno and Assistant Professor Tsuyoshi Sawada at the NAOJ Chile Observatory participated in the event as speakers and supporters for the star watching party.

Star watching started around 21:40 in the twilight by setting telescopes and binoculars in a large green schoolyard where tents were already set up to spend the night. The first target of observation was the setting moon at the age of 2.5. Children were very excited to see detailed parts of the moon, saying “Wow, we can see rough surface (craters) and shadow (earthshine)!” There were long lines for the telescopes targeting the bright and clearly visible objects such as the Orion Nebula and the Pleiades. On the other hand, children didn’t seem to be so much impressed by a kind of blurred objects like Comet Lovejoy (C/2014 Q2) and the globular cluster 47 Tucanae, but teachers looked happy to be able to see them with their eyes. The last target object was Jupiter rising just before the end of the star watching party. It was good closing that children could see Jupiter’s stripe pattern and satellites.

NAOJ Chile Observatory will continuously provide opportunities to experience the universe for children.

Tags : ALMA Topics