Explore the Galaxy

August 1st, 2009 - August 1st, 2011 | PROJECT

Explore the Galaxy involved teens from Chicago Public Schools (CPS) in planning for an upcoming exhibition and its interpretation. The Adler Planetarium worked with teens from several CPS high schools, with a special focus on the CPS Air Force Academy High School (AFAHS). The goals were to develop institutional partnerships and capacity for a teen docent program as well as to do formative evaluation for an upcoming exhibition. All goals were met. The Adler is now in year 4 of a comprehensive partnership with the AFAHS involving students from all four grades in field trips, activities, after-school clubs and Adler internships. The AFAHS students are now participants in an active teen internship program that places students in different Adler professional departments every summer. As well the Adler employs volunteer and paid teen interpreters on school year weekends. These relationships and programs depend on the foundations laid through the work of this grant. In the realm of exhibition design, teens also interviewed visitors about prior conceptions and interest in several areas related to cosmology including how gravity works and the size and age of the universe. Their comments influenced design of, The Universe a Walk through Space and Time, which opened in summer of 2012.

Project Website(s)

(no project website provided)

Team Members

Paul Knappenberger, Principal Investigator, Adler Planetarium


Funding Source: NASA
Award Number: NNX09AL37G
Funding Amount: 99877


Audience: Evaluators | Museum | ISE Professionals | Youth | Teen (up to 17)
Discipline: Physics | Space science
Resource Type: Project Descriptions
Environment Type: Afterschool Programs | Exhibitions | Informal | Formal Connections | K-12 Programs | Museum and Science Center Exhibits | Public Programs