The first solar eclipse to traverse across the entire continent in 99 years will take place Monday, August 21, 2017. While Virginia will not see a total eclipse, most of the state will see at least an 80% partial eclipse. As homeschoolers, we can celebrate God’s creation and the study of our solar system. Here is a mere sampling of resources available on the internet to prepare you and your family for this astronomical event.


1.1 Article: “Traveling Toward the Unknown”

Bekah DiFelice shares her encouragement for those times when we are facing hard choices or tough transitions. Using the biblical woman Ruth as her example, she points us to the sovereignty of God.

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1.2 Solar Eclipse Viewing and Safety

The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has produced materials for homeschool families to use in preparation for and during the solar eclipse. You will find family activities, lessons and activities, lessons to extend learning after the eclipse, suggested reading lists, and background resources for educators.

NASA also has searchable databases of eclipse events. These events will take place at libraries, zoos, and national parks and forests, among other places. You can use these databases to find an event to attend or watch online.

7,000 libraries across the country have registered to pass out two million free eclipse safety glasses. You can check to see if a library close to you is participating by using this interactive map. Zoom in on the state of Virginia to get the location of participating libraries.

This animation will show you what the eclipse will look like as it progresses.

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1.3 What is the Solar System?

Preschoolers will enjoy these books on space, which could help them understand the basics of the solar eclipse.

You can use this preparation guide to help your younger students understand the science behind the eclipse.

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1.4 The Science of an Eclipse

You and your students can become scientists by gathering data for this real life experiment. NASA has created the GLOBE Observer app to allow users to input data during the eclipse.  

During the eclipse, stars that are present but usually not visible due to the brightness of our sun will be visible. This resource identifies which stars and where to locate them in the sky.

Billing itself as everything you need to know about viewing the eclipse with kids, this guide provides a good deal of information, from science to safety.

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1.5 Interacting with an Eclipse

Your high school student may want to photograph this rare event, but it is not as simple as pointing your cell phone to the sky. These instructions include helpful hints on using a smartphone as well as a DSLR camera.

This interactive map allows you to insert your zip code and see an animation of your view of the eclipse from start to finish.

The partial eclipse visible in Virginia may pique interest in all things astronomical. This website has data on solar eclipses, lunar eclipses, and planetary transits worldwide from the years 1900 to 2099.

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2017 Solar Eclipse 1

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