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Kids Discovery Factory to Facilitate NASA Research Project- and You Can Help!




It's no secret- April 8th is set to be a monumental day for scientists, eclipse chasers, and millions in the path of the total solar eclipse. Locally, the community is coming together to celebrate, educate, and welcome visitors into our area through a wide range of eclipse themed programs.


Kids Discovery Factory will be hosting many opportunities for children and their families to learn about the upcoming eclipse and even participate in a NASA funded research project. The children’s museum applied to become a research facilitator for the Eclipse Soundscapes Project earlier this year, and recently received their data collection kit that will be utilized to collect information regarding the local soundscape.


The Eclipse Soundscapes Project studies how a solar eclipse affects animal and insect life by recording and analyzing the sounds and noise levels before, during, and after the solar eclipse. This research project has been ongoing for almost 100 years, first taking place during a total solar eclipse in 1932. A scientist named William Wheeler invited the general public to help him study the effect of the eclipse by collecting multi-sensory observations. Citizens were asked to record what they saw, felt, and heard over the course of the day. NASA has continued this research, and just like William Wheeler, they rely on citizen scientists to participate in the project.


From April 7th through April 9th, Kids Discovery Factory will participate in the soundscape project by using a recording device supplied by the soundscapes research team. But you don’t need a fancy recording system to participate in this research at home. Children and adults can collect their own multi-sensory data, record their observation on a field note sheet and share it with NASA from their own home or from wherever they plan to view the eclipse.


You can find a copy of the field notes paper at: www.kidsdiscoveryfactory.org/solar-eclipse-2024


The museum is now open during select hours Monday through Friday. Hours are posted on our website and social media pages. Stop by the museum between now and April 8th to make a solar eclipse model, learn about a secrete astronaut beach house, build and launch a rocket, play in the moon sand, and more. KDF will have solar eclipse glasses available for free for any children who visit the museum, $1 per adult.


Thanks to Ivy Tech, children can earn a Junior Ranger badge if they complete the Solar Eclipse activity booklet. Booklets are available at the museum while supplies last. Badges will be available after April 8th.


Junior Ranger Activity booklets and solar eclipse glasses will be available on April 7th at Batesville Blackout event happening at Gillespie Soccer Park. You can find Kids Discovery Factory in the Kids Space, alongside other amazing community groups and scientists! For more information regarding the Batesville Blackout event visit: Total Solar Eclipse 2024 – Batesville Blackout – Batesville Area Chamber of Commerce (batesvillein.com)

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