Monday, August 31, 2009

H) Other inexpensive educational sites in Los Angeles

Following are links to a few other interesting educational sites in Los Angeles. The prices are affordable ranging from free to $9 for adults. There are a few special prices at some of these locations for specific groups such as seniors, students, groups and children under five. Please follow the links for further inquiry.

G) Griffith Park

(picture of The Greek Theatre)

Griffith park is 4,210 acres of land in Los Angeles California which offers an abundance of entertainment options such as Greek Theatre, Los Angeles Zoo, Autry National Center, view of the Hollywood Sign, Griffith Observatory,... just to mention a few. For further information on Griffith Park please follow the link below.

F) How you can help the efforts of the observatory

There are many forms of contributing to the Griffith Observatory. Friends of the Observatory (FOTO) is a non-profit organization whose supporters are people who value what the observatory has to offer to the community. You can help these efforts by becoming a member of FOTO through a contribution. There are twelve levels of membership with prices ranging from $45-$25,000. As a member you, and eight people you would like to add, would receive many benefits such as discounts, acknowledgment in the news letter, subscription to The Observer, and much, much more. For further information including volunteering, please click the link below.

E) Photos of our fieldtrip

(In order of appearance)
(Astronomers Monument, Zeiss Telescope, Transformation:Planets into Landscapes)

Outdoor Cafe===>

Great views of Down town Los Angeles...

It's a great way for students to get in some outdoor exercise

During the hike, students can get a view of the historic Hollywood sign

D) What will I do to debrief students after I have attended the field trip?

I asked my students their favorite part of the trip to the observatory...a particular exhibit, the hike, the view? I also had my students pair share which was their favorite exhibit and why.

Students also shared something they learned and if it was what they expected it would be.

We wrote a class letter expressing our gratitude to the non-profit organization whom made our trip possible. We sent the letter to the following address:

Griffith Observatory
2800 East Observatory Road
Los Angeles, CA 90027

C) What Resource materials are available to assist my preparation, teaching?

Here are a few links to sites that will be beneficial for teachers, students, and parents before visiting the observatory:

(B) What would I need to do to prepare my students before the visit (consider adaptations for English learners and students with special needs)?

There are many things that I need to do to prepare my students for their visit to the observatory.

1) The first discussion prior to any field trip is safety precautions. Discuss possible scenarios with the students such as getting lost or injured. Have a plan set in to place that is clear enough for every student to understand. Inform them the dangers of the nature walk such as not walking too close to the edge and always staying at eyes view of the adults.

2) The students will be spending plenty of time walking and being active so it is important to make sure everyone has plenty of water to drink. Staying hydrated is extremely important to avoid heat strokes or loss of energy. Dehydration is severely dangerous and the students should be aware of that. Also making sure that they have plenty of sunscreen for the time of the nature walk.

3) Students need knowledge about what astronomy is. Students begin to learn about astronomy in the fifth grade so if you are taking younger students in make sure they have an idea about astronomy and the universe.

4) Students need knowledge of the observatory. Discuss the various exhibits the observatory has to offer in both the exterior and interior as well as history about the Griffith park observatory.

5) The key to making this a successful trip is to make it fun. Engage the students in discussions about the world out there beyond anything we can see. Get them pumped up about visiting this wonderful site and this will be a trip they will likely cherish for years to come.

(A) What special benefits could my students gain from visiting this site?

There are many benefits to visiting this site! Griffith Park Observatory sits atop Mount Hollywood in Los Angeles California. My students have the opportunity to enjoy a FREE trip to an amazing place that came to be thanks to the dream of one man, Col. Griffith Jenkins, Griffith (pictured up above). Thanks to his grand donation to the city of Los Angeles, they were able to build an expansive observatory where people from all around the world can come to L.A. and see the sky through the eyes of an astronomer.
My students can learn an abundance of information about the world beyond the naked eye. There are various scientific exhibits, as well as telescopes in which children can get a better view of the sky. Besides learning, students can participate in a simple 3 mile round trip nature walk up to the observatory where they will have the opportunity to see beautiful Los Angeles in a panoramic view! This is a great opportunity to share with students the importance of practicing safety when going on a hike. This will be a memory my students will cherish forever and possibly be able to share with their children some day.
FYI: There are school programs availalble but there are limitations. Please visit the website for further inquiry: Griffith Observatory - School Programs