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Recently this year in 7th grade, our class went on a field trip to the Morse Hall, UNH. Once we arrived, we were greeted by staff and students at the University. We broke into three groups, and began to travel around.

The first workshop I attended was called CraTER. Here, we learned about CraTER (Cosmic Ray Telescopes for the Effects of Radiation.) These are special telescopes and technological devices used to detect radiation. One of the devices we learned about was called a Geiger Counter. This is a hand-held machine that detects radiation and particle radiation. Another was the LRO (Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter.) This is a machine in space that scouts and looks for new things. In this workshop, we also studied atoms. Did you know that there are 150 septillion atoms in your body, and over one million at the tip of a single strand of hair! Also, if one atom was blown up to the size of a room, one proton of that atom would be a large as the tip of the strand of hair! That's a tiny particle! These are only a few things I learned at CraTER.

The next class was called Ice Cores. We started off in a classroom where we learned a little about Greenhouse gasses. Greenhouse gasses are the chemicals that heat up the ozone. The gases are Co2 (carbon dioxide), H2O (water and water vapor), CH4 (methane), and N2O (nitrous oxide).After we discussed that, we went outside and into a tiny room where we got all suited up in winter gear. Then, we went into a freezer the size of a room! It was 0 degrees Fahrenheit! We inspected some Ice Core samples and learned that they are usually from Antarctica, Alaska, Greenland, and the North Pole! Then, we left the freezer and went to lunch.

After we ate lunch outside on the benches, we went to Solar Observing. We met with the head of the observatory at UNH and saw some cool telescopes. There had to be a special screen that looked like tinfoil over the lens to keep our eyes from being burned. Then, we got to look at the sun! It looked blue through the screen but we could clearly see the sunspots, like little black dots. We also learned about how a planet is classified as a planet. It must be large enough to retain a circle shape, it must revolve around the sun, and it must be the biggest thing in it's area. This was what I learned at Solar Observing.

The next activity we did was called “Earth's Wild Ride.” We went inside of a large, black, blow-up dome that blocked out all outside light. Some people sat and some laid down as a projector showed us videos across the ceiling. It was so cool! Both of the videos were animated. The first was about people who lived on the moon and were learning about the history of the earth. The video covered dinosaurs, volcanoes, eclipses, and more! The next video was about the Mayan prediction of 2012. We learned what different civilization thought about the apocalypse, and how they handled their beliefs. Then, we left the dome and continued on.

After leaving the dome, we headed upstairs to look at some experiments that kids had put together. The group was called ARLISS (A Rocket Launch for International Student Satellites.) They created rockets which launched robots (also made by them) into the desert. We also went into the GIS, a room where maps and other large pieces of paper were printed. After looking at a few lminor exhibits, we went home on the bus.

Overall, the field trip to UNH was a great and fun educational experience. I loved every exhibit and learned a lot at each one. I hope we return to this Science day next year, and view more scientists, young and old, making discoveries. I loved this trip!
Article posted June 14, 2011 at 01:02 PM • comment • Reads 254 • Return to Blog List
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