During 1989 Project STARWALK merged efforts with the Columbia Educational Center in Portland Oregon and together we
wrote and received a multi-year grant that would enable bringing the new STARWALK curriculum to 15 rural school districts, one in each of 15 western
states. The grant was called TASEL (Technological Applications for Science Educational Leadership. With the grant we were able to purchase 15 Goto EX-3 portable Planetarium systems to be distributed to the participating school districts. Following
an intensive 3-week training course at Willamette College in Salem Oregon, and a follow-up training in Tulsa Oklahoma, the teachers were 'set loose' to
offer Planetarium lab lessons in their respective school districts and surrounding area.
Additional training and support was made possible with the production of a series of videos. The videos were directed by Jim Connett,
who at the time was the Kansas State Facilitator. I drove to KC from Peoria and brought in two of the project certified trainers, Anne Kennedy from
California, and Claudio Hisle from Oklahoma. All studio work was done at the KCPT-TV pulic station in Kansas City. We had enough funding for only 7 hours
of studio filming time in which to produce 7 videos so we had no time to waste! Starting with Friday evening the three of us scripted out each video,
practiced as much as we could and then hit the studios on Saturday. With 7 hours and no time to spare we started filming, and as you can see I never
stopped talking! By the end of the day we had the videos linked below.
An additional session with the group of teachers attending a training session was filmed during the weekend they all came to Kansas City.
Filming was done at UMKC.
Left-Click on the movie time link to open a new web page for viewing the video.
1. Introduction to Project STARWALK and using the dome and projector. Jim Connett interviews Bob Riddle about the project, its goals, and what is
involved with the training program. At a later date we filmed a group of teachers setting up the dome and projector. Then a deomonstration of how to use
2. Bob, Anne, and Claudia work with a globe and other materials to model Earth rotation, and the effects rotation has on shadows, and
changing positions of objects in the sky.
3. Bob and Anne, Claudia use a globe, the celestial sphere, and a 'Trippensee Model' to model Earth revolution the reasons for seasons, and seasonal
4. Bob and Anne use a globe, the 'Trippensee Model', styrofoam balls, and other materials to model Moon phases and eclipses, the difference
between sideral and synodic time
5. Bob and Anne use a variety of models, the flip chart, and an Astronomy program for a lesson on Computer Assisted Astronomy.
From how to use a star map, using a planisphere, to the use of some Astronomy programs for learning constellation patterns, apparent motions of the
Sun and Moon or for plotting planets on an equatorial star chart.
6. Extensions In this video I work with a group of teachers on using Dynamic Modeling, or kinesthetic actitivies, to
model rotation, revolution, seasonal constellations, Moon phases, and sundials. In the studio we use different models, commercially available,
or made in the classroom by the students, to model Earth motions.