“Astronomy compels the soul to look upwards and leads us from this world to another.”
Astronomy is an effort to explain the origin of objects such as planets, stars, galaxies and the moon along with other astronomical phenomena and their evolution.
The scientific and technological development of a country or region is closely linked to its human development index. Several studies have shown that investing in science education, research and technology provides a great return not only economically, but culturally as well. Although we live in a world full of unsatisfied basic human needs and issues such as global warming, we can argue that astronomy has long term benefits that are equally as important to a civilized society. Additionally astronomy and related fields are at the forefront of science and technology to answer fundamental questions and driving innovation.
Thus the Cluster 01 of District 3220 successfully implemented their joint project in creating awareness on Astronomy among children from suburbs of Colombo. The project composed of two phases where the first one was to conduct a workshop and subsequently a planetarium visit with the children.
“The phase I”, which was the workshop, was held on the 27th of January 2017, at Batuwandara Junior School. The Astronomical Society of Nalanda Collage accompanied by the Old Nalandians Astronimical Society conducted the workshop for the children enhancing their awareness on the subject, Astronomy. Moreover they educated children, as to how to observe objects in the sky using astronomical equipment by means of the sun observation session. As this was a new experience to the children they were very much enthusiastic and engaged in the workshop with much interest. Afterwards prior to drawing the phase to a close, they initiated the establishment of an Astronomical Club in the school. The principle and the teachers expressed their appreciation on the project and were pleased that their children were involved in the workshop, since it provides them with the opportunity to learn about a subject which will open up new doors to their future.
The planetarium visit was “The phase II” of the project, which took place on the 7th of February 2017. With regard to this they brought the children from Batuwandara Junior School to the planetarium. This was a precious moment for them, as they got to expand their knowledge on various aspects of astronomy with the guidance of specialists in the subject who were at the planetarium. With this the project of creating awareness on Astronomy was successfully concluded.
As of now the Astronomical Club of Batuwandara Junior School is connected with the Astronomical Society of Nalanda Collage in order to sustain the knowledge they gathered and to create a positive impact towards the society as a whole. This project gave them a new hope and created a path on which they have the potential to build up a career. As Rotaractors we are happy of enabling them to see the future in a much more different manner and of improving their potential of growth.
Written by : Rtr. Sandamini Gunawardena