Tim Haag could not use the Stamford Museum & Nature Center’s telescope to help him illustrate his points about the moon because of the wet weather Friday. Instead, he used third-grader Julia Mansfield.
Among Julia’s tasks was to orbit the room as if it were the Earth to show how the moon revolves. To do this, she had to walk sideways, shuffling her feet as she made her way around. Incorporating children is part of Haag’s goal during his presentations as he tries to pique their interest.
“If they get interested when they are young, it can become a lifelong hobby,” the New Canaan High School teacher said of teaching kids about the moon and the Earth.
Luckily, Haag is a visual teacher and incorporated that into his presentation, using hula hoops to show the moon’s orbit, a baseball to show the scale size of the moon to a 12-inch globe and other props as well. He also kept people entertained by slipping in jokes throughout, such as “What is older, the moon or the sun?” Answer? "The moon, because it goes out at night."
Haag is the head of the science department at New Canaan High School and teaches astronomy, among other classes.
In addition to the nature center's Astronomy Nights, the observatory is open to the public Fridays from 8 to 10 p.m. during the winter and 8:30 to 10:30 p.m. during the summer — weather permitting. Contact for more information or to set up a private visit.
What programs at the Stamford Museum & Nature Center do you attend? Share below or send your feedback to reporter Anthony Buzzeo at .