RAFT does not carry these glasses, but you do not need to look at the sun to enjoy the experience of a solar eclipse. As you may know the Bay Area will see about 75% of the eclipse on Monday, August 21. The eclipse will be at its fullest at approximately 10:15 that morning. We are hoping there will not be any cloud cover! Even if there are overcast skies, students will be able to observe the darkening effect in the sky. If the sun is shining, you can do activities with your students such as observing the rays cast by the sun on a plain surface, holding up a piece of peg board, a colander, or anything with round holes in it. Students will see tiny images of the eclipsed sun without having to look up into the sky. They can also observe other shadows and images of the sun’s rays coming through leaves on a tree or shrub, or even used their own hands, fingers splayed and over-crossed, to observe these images.
If possible, have your students do the same activities at the same time of day before or after the eclipse so that they can observe the differences. The next solar eclipse occurring in North America will not be until 2024.
It is important to remember never to look at the sun without NASA rated glasses.
For more on information and activities on the solar eclipse check the following links:
By Sandra Woodard, RAFT Greenroom & Membership Associate