The 4th grade Spiritree residency on the Solar System brought the arts and the curriculum together engaging the students’ multiple intelligences in the learning process. Teachers and artists collaborated in developing a project where the concept of our vast and complex Solar System would become more accessible to students’ understanding.
As the students increased their knowledge of astronomy through research in the classroom, they created the planets -- in scale -- using papier machè. The students also created headdresses to represent the ancient Roman gods from whom the planets take their names. They explored the ways people across the ages have observed the skies by researching important astronomers such as Copernicus and Galileo. They created models of telescopes in papier machè.
The work accomplished during the 10-day residency culminated in 4 performances where the 4th graders orbited with their planets around an enormous sun, while the “Roman gods” shared their knowledge with the school community and their families.