Camping under the Stars
For many who live in the city, camping is the only time they might have
access to truly dark skies - perfect for stargazing! Listed below are
suggestions for camping activities which can be done on one's own, as
a family or as a group.
With darker skies come more stars - sometimes even the Big Dipper is
hard to pick out! Check out both simple star charts and more advanced
ones, and be sure to take one with you when you camp. Don't forget your
to find north by the Sun and stars
Contrary to popular belief, Polaris (the North Star) is NOT the brightest
star in the sky. Click on this link to learn how to find north by using
the stars or the Sun. This can be an important if you are planning on
camping in the backwoods.
to tell time by the Sun and stars
So your watch falls off your wrist into the lake. How can you figure
out what time it is, night or day? This link is also useful for fulfilling
Guide and Scout requirements. Likewise, a more advanced method is found
At dusk and dawn, outside of the city it is not uncommon to see points
of light moving across the sky - too dim to be a plane, too slow to
be a meteor, but certainly not a star. What is it? Click the link above
to find out which satellites (or even the International Space Station)
will be overhead for your specific location, and how to look for them.
Tour of the Night Sky
Starting with the Big Dipper, make your way across the sky finding
constellations and learning about astronomy using this tour of the stars
and accompanying star map.
including myths and legends
Some of the best campfire stories are the myths and legends behind
some of the well-known (and not-so-well-known) constellations. This
site has all the constellations, how to find them, when to see them
and "how they got there."
Canadian Junior Astronomer Program
This new initiative of the Canadian Astronomical Society invites students
of all ages to become a Junior Astronomer. Select from a list of things
to find in the sky and on the internet to complete a level, and move
from Star, to Nova, to Supernova. The levels can be completed by the
whole family or parents can help out the younger ones.
Invent your own constellation
To demonstrate that there is nothing sacred about the star patterns
after which the constellations are named (and to have some fun), younger
campers can invent their own constellations and make up stories to go
created by the
CASCA education Webteam, (2008)