A Global Citizen of the skies

Abstract

Global citizenship plays an important role in today’s schools. Many subjects taught in schools have already incorporated such ideas. Science and physics have also followed suit. However, when dealing with astronomy – a topic so seemingly far removed from society – it becomes difficult to imagine any links with global citizenship. At Nottingham Trent University observatory we have developed an activity ideal to transport the idea of global citizenship and deal with common astronomical misconceptions. It incorporates role playing in the inspiring environment of an astronomical observatory. In this activity stellar constellations with their myths and history pose an ideal opportunity to explore global citizenship. Students not only place themselves in someone else’s situation, but also compare their different reactions when faced with a common situation. This idea is extended to analyse the change in constellation culture throughout time and the affect politics has had on constellations. In this article we outline the details of this activity and how it deals with common astronomical misconceptions. We also demonstrate its implementation into astronomy taught at schools. First results showing the impact the activity had on the students will also be given.

Brown, D. and Neale, N. (2010) A Global Citizen of the skies. Educationalfutures, [online] Vol. 2(2). Available at: http://educationstudies.org.uk/?p=496 [Accessed 19 Sep, 2017].