W.L. Valentine Elementary School

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Solar Eclipse Celebration on Monday!

 Monday, August 21st we will be celebrating the Solar Eclipse at Valentine.
*NGSS- Next Generation Science Standards     *STEM- Science Technology Engineering Mathematics

The Solar Eclipse Celebration is part of our kick-off for our new STEM program. Crystal Shin has joined our staff as our full time STEM teacher. We have remodeled our Computer Lab and throughout the school year will be adding furniture, technology and equipment to create a STEM learning lab. All of our students will participate in NGSS aligned units of study in our STEM lab throughout the school year. It is an exciting time!!

We will be using NGSS Instructional Practices for our Solar Eclipse Celebration. We are intentionally not providing our students with scientific explanations of how a solar eclipse occurs prior to the event. On Monday, our students will first be able to enjoy the experience of observing this rare phenomenon with all of their school mates, record their observations as it occurs, and then share their observations, questions and wonderings with their classmates. Each class will record their questions about the phenomenon they just observed and post them outside on their classroom doors. All classes will be able to take a gallery walk around the campus to explore the questions and wonderings of other classes and grade levels. Our follow up lessons will provide opportunities for students to create models & test their theories about how a solar eclipse occurs- just like real scientists!

We have purchased solar viewer glasses for all of our students and staff. The solar viewers were purchased from Lunt Solar Systems, listed as a reputable vendor on the American Astronomical Society and National Science Foundation’s joint effort website on safety eye protection. Lunt Solar Systems was also chosen by our purchasing department because it was the only vendor with children size glasses available for a better fit for elementary school children.

Please review the safety precautions for eye safety from listed below with your children. We are teaching all of our students these same safety rules as school.

Here are Bill Nye's top eclipse tip: Protect your eyes

Greetings Earth's citizens,

If you're like me (and I know I am), you know next week's solar eclipse is going to be extraordinary. A total eclipse will sweep through North America, and millions of people in South America, Central America, even Europe and Russia can enjoy a partial eclipse. This is exciting, and it's time to prepare. There's a lot of information out there. So, keep one thing in mind:  "Be wise; protect your eyes."

 It is never safe to look directly at the Sun overhead without protective eyewear. The danger is simply that an eclipse is so fascinating, that we are tempted to stare right at the Sun for minutes at a time, much longer than we would even consider on any other day. Don't try to sneak even a glimpse. A direct look at the Sun can cause a lifetime of permanent eye damage. Let's avoid that.

Here are three things I recommend for safe solar eclipse viewing:


Before the eclipse, secure safety eyewear for your family, students or friends (including yourself, while you're at it). Everyone should have their own pair, even if you're watching with a small child. Check your glasses for scratches and scuffs, even if your glasses are brand new. Many places are selling and distributing free eclipse glasses.


On the big day itself, wear your eclipse glasses at all times to view the Sun as it becomes eclipsed by the Moon. The exception will be for those of us directly in the path of totality, and even there only during the brief period when the world goes totally dark. Only there can you briefly remove your protective eyewear and view the Sun's corona.


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