Space Out and Explore the Universe Without Leaving Home

Space Out and Explore the Universe Without Leaving Home

Space Out and Explore the Universe Without Leaving Home

Space Out and Explore the Universe Without Leaving Home

If you find yourself with a new (or renewed) interest in America’s space program or general astronomy, you’re in luck — the web is full of free and inexpensive learning resources to feed your mind. You can even find a few science projects to keep the family busy. Here’s a guide.

The National Aeronautics and Space Administration main website is a great place to discover the past, present and future of the country’s role in cosmic exploration. Along with history articles and multimedia, the live NASA TV video stream is on the site, as are links to the agency’s expansive presence across social-media channels (including Giphy, SoundCloud and Twitch).

When you’re ready to explore the cosmos on your own, use your smartphone; just search for “astronomy” in your app store. Many popular apps combine augmented reality, 3-D models and your location information to provide a customized guided tour of the sky.

The $3 Star Walk 2 for Android and iOS is beautifully designed, and the app’s news section alerts you to upcoming astronomical events. The $2 Star Rover for Android and iOS also provides a pocket planetarium experience, as does the free SkyView Lite for Android and iOS.

SkySafari has apps for Android and iOS on several enthusiast levels (paid versions range from about $3 to $40), and the more expensive editions include mobile control for compatible home telescopes. And if you don’t have your own telescope, peek at the images by the Hubble Space Telescope on its official website.

Colorful planets and rolling rovers have a certain appeal for children and can help foster an early interest in science, technology engineering and mathematics. Chicago’s Museum of Science and Industry offers a Science at Home collection of hands-on projects for children, like designing a parachute or building a “stomp rocket.”

The California Science Center has several projects as part of its Stuck at Home Science activity series that teaches material using household supplies.


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