The Daviess County Public Schools district is looking forward – and looking up! – with plans to engage students at all grade levels with exciting learning experiences as our community experiences a solar eclipse on Monday, Aug. 21, 2017.
The solar eclipse will be visible throughout North America on that date. Daviess County is not in the path of totality, but we are close with magnitude 0.988 and 99.04% obscuration. The eclipse will begin at approximately 11:56 a.m. and end at approximately 2:50 p.m. in our area, with maximum coverage at about 1:25 p.m. This will be an amazing experience – and for many, a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to see a solar eclipse at this level of obscuration.
All DCPS students will participate in learning activities about the eclipse. In addition, the Confucius Institute at Western Kentucky University, in partnership with the Public Broadcasting Service and National Public Radio (PBS and NPR), has donated special “eclipse viewers” so students and staff can safely watch the moon pass in front of the sun. These viewers meet ISO safety requirements for direct solar viewing. DCPS schools are sending authorization forms to all parents and guardians to confirm permission for students to view the eclipse.
DCPS teachers have access to a variety of lesson plans and information on the NASA education website: https://eclipse2017.nasa.gov/ k-12-formal-education Assistant superintendent for teaching and learning Jana Beth Francis is working with schools to ensure that teachers have the resources they need to plan challenging, engaging and empowering learning activities for this amazing event. The Next Generation Science Standards focus on three dimensions of scientific learning—crosscutting concepts, science and engineering practices and disciplinary core ideas. The eclipse serves as the perfect phenomenon to helps students think across all three dimensions.
“The solar eclipse on August 21 is an amazing science phenomenon,” Francis said. “My goal is that the solar eclipse launches students into scientific discovery. Questions this experience may inspire include ‘How can a small moon cover our big sun? What patterns of rotation cause the solar eclipse?’ I hope this phenomenon launches our students into an investigation of the natural world around them.”
Even the food service staff is on board.
The Daviess County Public Schools food services team will continue their tradition of supporting classroom learning by serving a special “eclipse lunch” at all elementary schools on Monday, Aug. 21, as our community experiences the Great American Eclipse.
The entrée for the day will be an “Eclipse Sandwich” – an open-faced breaded chicken sandwich with a slice of provolone, with the top of the bun on the side. The round chicken patty will represent the sun and the round slice of cheese will represent the moon.
Sides will include “Man in the Moon” smiley fries (pictured above) and “Sunkist” oranges. The meal will be completed with a “Sunset Sip” juice box and moon pies.
The meal is just another way the entire staff at Daviess County Public Schools puts “Kids First” in ensuring that this special day is memorable and enjoyable for all students. Under the leadership of food services director Lisa Sims, our school cafeterias serve delicious and nutritious meals every day, and are always willing to create special themes and programs to support learning activities in our schools.