AAS 205th Meeting, 9-13 January 2005
Session 8 Informal Astronomy
Poster, Monday, January 10, 2005, 9:20am-6:30pm, Exhibit Hall

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[8.03] NASA Night Sky Network: Building Community and Providing Resources

S. P. Chippindale, M. Berendsen (ASP)

Nine months after the release of the first Night Sky Network Outreach Toolkit amateur astronomers report using the materials at over 700 events with a total of over 60,000 people in attendance. In this poster we outline the development of these materials designed specifically for amateur astronomers and the developing sense of community among those using the materials.

Development of materials is done in a partnership with the Astronomical Society of the Pacific educators working closely with a NASA e/po team. Amateur astronomers are involved at every step of the process. Coordination with NASA e/po team members (initially the NASA-JPL Navigator e/po) is essential throughout the process not only to ensure accuracy but to add creative input. Traning for the materials was developed with the Navigator team and is now done via a DVD that is included in each Outreach ToolKit.

The community of practice is built and supported by: * use of the same materials * exchange of stories and resources on bulletin board available only to registered members * telecons with NASA scientists * newsletters

Typical response from participant, ``Thank you so much for offering their presentation to the amateur community. Telecons like this and the NSN are a great way to get information out to amateurs which in turn pass the same information onto the public. Please keep the information flowing it's great!" Raleigh Astronomy Club of North Carolina

Special thanks to the NASA-JPL Navigator EPO for providing the initial vision and funding for the development and ongoing support of this program and to the CfA-NASA Structure and Evolution of the Universe Education Forum and the NASA Origins Education Forum for continuing support of the NSN and the creation of subsequent Outreach ToolKits.

If you would like more information about this abstract, please follow the link to http://nightsky.nasa.jpl.gov. This link was provided by the author. When you follow it, you will leave the Web site for this meeting; to return, you should use the Back comand on your browser.

The author(s) of this abstract have provided an email address for comments about the abstract: schippindale@astrosociety.org

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