I spent a couple hours with some very intelligent kids at Marian Academy on Friday, 23rd November. Marian Academy is a beautiful private school with a Roman Catholic heritage based on Carifesta Ave.
I took my ES-AR 102mm refractor telescope to demonstrate to kids the parts of a telescope, and how to use its basic features. We discussed why pursuing astronomy as a hobby could be beneficial in many ways; for instance, developing a sense of passion or meaning in life. Astronomy can do that! I then discussed about astrophotography, explaining how easy it is to get involved in taking pictures of the night sky. I gave them a tour of my own photos, and the equipment I used to take those photos. To my delight, they were engaged and curious.
After the presentation, a few students expressed to me that they felt inspired to pursue an interest in astronomy. A couple of students had telescopes of their own, but because they felt ‘alone’ pursuing the hobby, they simply abandoned their curiosity in the subject.
It is unfortunate when kids have to suspend their curiosity due to a lack of support, whether at home or in school. Schools must find every means possible to develop an interpersonal relationship with the individuality of young people, to know what they are good at, and how best to tap into their individual capacity to become thought leaders and innovators. If we want a smarter, more scientific-oriented nation, we have to strive to provide the resources required to promote intellectual growth.
Perhaps more importantly, we have to show kids our commitment and unwavering support through collaborative action. Part of the Astronomy Association’s mandate is to aid with this endeavour through our outreach programmes.
The event was organized in partnership with one of Marian Academy’s finest Science teacher, Phelan Ramdat, with the warm support of the Principal, Sister Marie Harper. Here are some photos to see what it would be like to have us at your school or private event.