DOE - Maine Department of Education

04/05/2024 | News release | Distributed by Public on 04/05/2024 11:45

How Williams Elementary School is Teaching and Preparing Students for the Solar Eclipse

Two weeks before the solar eclipse on April 8th, Williams Elementary School in RSU 18 principal Melanie Smith visited all classrooms to read aloud the book A Few Beautiful Minutes Experiencing a Solar Eclipse, written by Kate Allen Fox. During her visits, Principal Smith also shared a video with students that explained the difference between solar eclipses and lunar eclipses.

A Few Beautiful Minutes Experiencing a Solar Eclipse, written by Kate Allen Fox

Maps of the path of totality across the United States and our state of Maine were also shown and discussed with students.

In addition to the academic presentations and discussions happening at school, the Williams Elementary School community collected cardboard tubes during the month of March in preparation for a special solar eclipse project. The week before the solar eclipse, art teacher David Clark and 3rd-grade teacher Brynn Charest helped students create their own eclipse viewers out of the collected recycled materials. The self-created handheld eclipse viewers will allow students to view the solar eclipse indirectly. All students in RSU 18 were also provided solar glasses to be distributed to students on Monday, April 8th.

Students working on their solar eclipse viewers:

In addition, Williams Elementary teachers used eclipse resources provided by the Maine Department of Education to educate students about the upcoming solar eclipse.

"We wanted to ensure that our children had background knowledge about a total solar eclipse so that they would understand what was happening on April 8th and know how to view the solar eclipse safely," said Principal Smith.

For more information, resources, and safety advice for schools regarding the 2024 Social Eclipse, please visit the Maine DOE Eclipse Resource page.

This story was submitted to the Maine DOE by Williams Elementary School. To submit a story about your school, please fill out our Good News Submission form.

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