Instructors: Dianne Phillips and Dixie Androes

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1 Instructors: Dianne Phillips and Dixie Androes

2 My Course was designed to replace an Astronomy lab. I had taken Astronomy at another school but did not take a lab with it. With this credit hour I will have met the requirement for an Associates Degree from North West Arkansas Community College.

3 To show a general understanding for Astronomy concepts I must: *learn to use night sky navigation tools *learn to identify constellations *learn the lunar phases *attend a night lab at Hobbs State Park

4 I created a small constellation handbook with a few of the more popular constellations. For each constellation I provide when it is visible in the sky and an image of each, as well as the story for which it was named. This can help anybody learning about the constellations by associating a story with each one. This can help students here at NWACC in astronomy, but could probably be best used at the Hobbs State Park community observation nights.

5 Sky Gazer Lab: an introduction to the Sky Gazer software, learn how to navigate program. Lunar Observation Lab: learn the moon phases. Learn to plot and predict the movement of the moon as well as develop a better understanding of the moon. Sky Gazer Star Lab: learn how to further use the Sky Gazer program. Be able to identify constellations as well as record their local coordinates. Also identify other celestial bodies and gather data about them from Sky Gazer. Night Lab at Hobbs State Park: meet with other individuals currently taking Astronomy. Observe and learn from presentations. And have a chance to look through telescopes at the night sky.

6 o The main technology I utilized to complete my tasks was Sky Gazer. Sky Gazer is a sky navigation tool that allows you to view the stars and other celestial bodies. It projects the sky in a 360 degree view and shows you exactly where to look to find things. It also has information on all the objects, such as type of stars, celestial coordinates, etc. o I also had to utilize a compass. For my observations I had to record the Azimuth of objects and to do this I would use a compass to find north and use the 360 degree ring on the outside of the compass to find the Azimuth o Finally I used the internet to research information about constellations while making my constellation guide.

7 Sky Gazer Lab For this lab I learned how to navigate the Sky Gazer program. I followed the steps in the lab and learned how to adjust the location and time, as well as find, center, and navigate the display panels for celestial objects. Lunar Observation Lab During this lab I observed the moon periodically over two months and recorded my observations. For each observation I would record the date, time, the moon phase, and its local coordinates, or altitude and azimuth. I then found how many arc degrees the moon would appear to move each hour and what direction as well as how far it really moved each hour and what direction. I also found the difference in time the moon will rise from one night to the next.

8 Sky Gazer Star Lab I learned to locate and identify constellations, stars, galaxies, and other celestial bodies. I first located and observed stars and their constellations and recorded their local coordinates. I then used Sky Gazer to locate several stars and record their constellation, solar mass, spectral type, distance, and their apparent magnitude. As well as stars I found several Messier or Deep Sky Objects. Finally I used Sky Gazer to record celestial coordinates for a few objects, such as galaxies and Saturn. Night Lab at Hobbs State Park - this allowed me to be involved with the Astronomy community and look through telescopes. I was able to watch and learn from a few students who made presentations. Also it was an opportunity to ask questions and learn from experienced sky gazers.

9 I found that I learned a lot from this course. I had previously taken Astronomy but had not participated in Astronomy Lab. I now understand much more in depth how the Moon orbits the Earth. I also learned how to use local coordinates to record the moon and how to compare recordings over several days. And on top of that I learned how to locate and recognize several constellations. One of the most useful skills I gained was while observing the moon. I can more or less tell time by the moon now and because I spend a lot of time in the outdoors hiking and climbing and such this knowledge could come in handy. Another outdoor tool I gained was how to identify the north star or Polaris.

10 I want to thank Dianne Phillips for working with me to design a course outline I would like to thank Dixie Androes for the lab assignments and the Sky Gazer Software. And thank you to Hobbs State Park for Allowing me to come to there community observation and participate in all the fun.

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