Exploring our Universe

17 02 2009


In honor of Black History Month, we are honoring our successful African Americans in science and technology.



Scientist Header


  Have you looked up into the stars at night and wondered “what exactly is out there?” Or, “where did all the planets come from and how did all the stars get into the sky?”



Astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson is answering these questions. As director of New York’s Haden Planetarium, he studies the planets, moon, galaxies and stars. He is fascinated with the creation of the universe and knew he wanted to be a scientist since he was 9 years old! He hosts a show on PBS called NOVA Science Now, and holds 9 honorary doctorate degrees. Explore outer space with scientists by making your own constellation viewer!




Neil deGrasse Tyson

Neil is the same age as NASA! (50)





A constellation is a group of stars that appear to .A constellation is a group of stars that appear to make a picture in the sky. In this activity you can make a viewing tube that allows you to simulate looking at a constellation.



  • Toilet paper/paper towel tube
  • Blue paper circle
  • Rubber band
  • (optional) constellations printout
  • Scissors
  • Glue
  • Compass point or screw



  1. (If you want to make up their own constellation, skip this part). Choose the constellation you want to view. Cut the circle out.
  2. Use a glue stick to glue the constellation circle onto the center of the blue paper circle
  3. Get an adult to help fix the paper circle to one end of thtube1e tube using a rubber band
  4. Use the stars on the constellation as guides to punch small holes with the compass point or screw. BE CAREFUL! The point is sharp! (You can also just make up their own picture)
  5. Hold your viewer up to the light. Can you see the constellation?

Send us pictures of your constellation viewer!




2 responses

12 12 2010

Hi! I love this activity, making a Constellation Tube. Do you have a printout with all the constellations? The one on the sight only has 2. I would greatly appreciate a copy. Thanks!

Merry Christmas!

13 12 2010

I am so glad you enjoyed the activity, but unfortunately I do not have a printout with all the constellations. You can find four more constellation printouts for this activity at the Museum of New Zealand’s website. http://www.tepapa.govt.nz/space/constellations.htm

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