AAS 206th Meeting, 29 May - 2 June 2005
Session 5 Public Observatories and Informal Astronomy
Poster, Monday, 9:20am-6:30pm, Tuesday, 10:00am-7:00pm, May 30, 2005, Ballroom A

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[5.05] The Rural Outreach Science Education Opportunities (ROSEO) Project in Northern Colorado

D. TeBockhorst, C. Radman, A. Geiselman (Discovery Science Center), R. B. Culver (Colorado State University)

Science education in the rural areas of Northern Colorado has historically suffered from both a limited access to the science education facilities which are located along the base of the Northern Colorado Front Range as well as from the limited resources available within the school districts themselves. The ROSEO project seeks to address some of these issues through the initiation of an outreach effort to these rural areas and the subsequent establishment of an in-depth, rurally oriented test-bed teacher training program in astronomy and space science.

The central vehicle for the implementation of this program is the Science Discovery Center which was founded in 1989 in Fort Collins, Colorado and has since established itself as a high-quality resource for science education in the Northern Colorado region.

In this presentation we describe the use of a travelling portable Starlab as an outreach tool by which planetarium simulations of the night sky can be provided in a regular on-site daytime classroom environment to large numbers of students over extensive areas of Northern Colorado. Such a classroom experience can serve as the starting point for the discussion of a wide variety of topics in astronomy and space science. It is hoped that the information gained from these outreach efforts will ultimately lead to the development of an educational template which will be of considerable use to other rural areas in circumstances similiar to those found in Northern Colorado.

This work is funded by the Space Telescope Science Institute of the NASA-IDEAS grant program.

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Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society, 37 #2
© 2005. The American Astronomical Soceity.