Return to the Stratosphere

Activity 2: "Starstuff reflecting on Starstuff"--Looking back on an Adventure


To have students discuss what they've learned through this electronic field trip, and to give their assessment of this kind of educational experience.

If your journey began with a discussion of what students knew and wanted to know about the Universe, it makes sense to end with a discussion of what was learned. The discussion should start with many of the same questions that were raised in your opening activity. At this point you'll see how useful it is to have a good record of what was said "way back when"! Please take notes about what's said now. It would be very helpful to future Passport to Knowledge projects to share this information on-line if you have access to the Internet, or mail it with your Evaluation forms. Here are some ideas to get things going.

General Questions:

Starlight: Color, Light and Heat

Stars, Planets, and Moons

Open-Ended Questions

"How looks the night?"

Poet at work:

Gerard Manley Hopkins

Students sometimes forget that published authors also have to sweat the details and work through draft upon draft. We've reprinted Hopkins' finished poem, "The Starlight Night" (page 26), but here you can see the poet at work behind the scenes, striving to find the right words to express his feelings for the stars.


Stars waving their indivisible rays.
Sky fleeced with the milky way.

Night's lantern
Pointed with pierced lights, and reaks of rays
Discover'd everywhere.

The sky minted into golden sequins.
Stars like gold tufts.
Stars like golden bees.
Stars like golden rowels.
Sky peak'd with tiny flames.

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