At this time of year, the Tyler Junior College Earth and Space Science Center is usually bustling with students on school field trips.
Due to health guidelines and the governor’s stay-at-home order to stem the spread of the coronavirus, the science center is closed until at least May 4, causing many students and their families to miss their traditional spring trips to the planetarium.
As a service to the community – and to homeschooling students and parents everywhere – the science center is offering free virtual field trips to the planetarium.
“Our visitors can’t come to us, so we will go to them,” said Dr. Beau Hartweg, TJC science center director. “Each video is about 10 to 15 minutes in length and designed to be great supplements to online and homeschool lessons students are already doing while staying at home.”
The first virtual field trip to the planetarium, which covers the phases of the moon, is available now at sciencecenter.tjc.edu/virtual-field-trips.
Future planned trips will include:
• Constellation Storytime for Kids
• Solar System Tour
• Deep Sky Objects
• Navigating the Night Sky
• Stargazing from Home: Tips, Tools and Apps
“We’re having a lot of fun creating these videos, but we really miss seeing our school friends at the science center and look forward to the time when we are all together again,” Hartweg said.