As of this January this year, teacher Leah Shin from South Korea uses the Universe in a Box in her classroom as part of the curriculum. In her report, she shares her experiences with UNAWE’s educational resource and how the Box became a regular feature of her teacher’s toolkit.
On ‘Universe in a Box day’ at KAIST Campus, Leah had 2 small classes, one was around 5 kids and the other 4 kids. “I tried to show kids the distance between the Moon and the Earth. The kids could hold the Moon and Earth masks and I showed them the phases of the Moon. They also learned from Moon storytelling and drawing images on the face of the Moon.”
The young students liked the hands-on materials of Universe in a Box, which incited a classroom discussion: “They all liked the mask activity. When the kids engaged in the activities, even if it was only simple things like touching and holding materials, they giggled a lot. They were especially interested in the images of the Moon in different countries. We had a good conversation on this.”
Leah and her students exploring the Moon with Universe in a Box.
During the first class, Leah found it kind of challenging for kids who were around 4 to 6 years old, although she was speaking in English. "It was difficult at first for me to hold their attention, but then some parents got involved and tried to help kids and me in the classroom. From then on, the first class went well, thanks to the more individual approach.”
The UB changed Leah’s perspective on astronomy education: “Personally, I have learned much by preparing and studying the content. It was a valuable experience for me to rethink and reset the concept and knowledge these kids have of the Universe. That was very big… that’s why I can never let UB go away. So, as of January 2018, I will use UB in two different classes once a week.”
The Universe in a Box is an educational kit to assist teachers and educators in bringing astronomy and space sciences to 4–10 year old children around the world. The Box provides teachers and educators with over 40 practical, interactive, and fun activities, which you can easily recreate and do yourself.