Youth Capture the Colorful Cosmos Program

Teach kids astronomy by controlling real telescopes over the internet, and create images like these!

Youth Capture the Colorful Cosmos Program is a special opportunity for 25 Affiliates from the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (SAO) and Smithsonian Affiliations. Qualified Affiliates that successfully complete the online professional development program to facilitate the use of the MicroObservatory online telescope system will be awarded $1500 for implementation of Youth Capture the Colorful Cosmos Program. Funding has been provided by the Smithsonian Youth Access Grant Fund.   

  • Are you an Affiliate educator interested in sharing the art and science of astrophotography with youth in your community?   
  • Does your organization have an informal education program, partnerships with area community centers or middle schools and interest in providing enrichment activities for students based on STEM? 
  • Can your museum or organization implement a workshop for middle school students, underserved by science and technology educational programs, ages 12 – 18   (minimum of 10 or more students) and facilitate an 8 – 20 hour program? 
  • Would you like to learn how to organize and promote an exhibition of youth-created astronomy photographs? 

For more information on the program, join us for a Teleconference to discuss implementing Youth Capture the Colorful Cosmos Program on Tuesday, March 6, 2012, at 4:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time. 

Dial In:  1-877-860-3058
Participant Pass code:  607773
Call in and learn about participating in this program before registration goes live.  

Talk to SAO astronomy educators Mary Dussault and Erin Braswell. Smithsonian Affiliations representatives Christina Di Meglio Lopez and Caroline Mah will also be available to answer questions.

Follow the MicroObservatory’s Twitter feed; Facebook page; and Flickr photostream.

Telescopes "Ben" and "Cecilia" at the Whipple Observatory in Amado, AZ. Along with "Annie," located on the roof at SAO, they are three in a network of telescopes, controllable over the internet, helping students learn more about astronomy. Photo Credit: Dan Brocious/SAO.

2012 Affiliations National Conference

Join your Affiliate and Smithsonian colleagues at the Smithsonian Affiliations National Conference, June 12- 14, 2012! 

If you haven’t already marked your calendars, now is an even better time to do so. This year’s final event during the National Conference is a special program and reception on June 14 honoring the late I. Michael Heyman, 10th Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution. 

Secretary Heyman rides a carousel set up at the Los Angeles Convention Center, first stop of the "America's Smithsonian" national tour celebrating the Smithsonian's 150th anniversary. Photo courtesy Smithsonian Institution.

Heyman served as Smithsonian Secretary from 1994 to 1999. Seeking to extend the Institution’s reach far beyond the nation’s capital, he created the Smithsonian Affiliations program to share resources with other museums. Among the highlights of Heyman’s tenure was the Institution’s first website in 1995 and the Smithsonian’s 150th anniversary celebration in 1996. He also oversaw the establishment of the Smithsonian Latino Center in 1997 and, under his leadership, the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center donation was secured for the creation of a new facility for the National Air and Space Museum. Shortly before his retirement in 1999, Heyman officiated at the groundbreaking for the National Museum of the American Indian. 

There’s much more in store for you at this year’s Affiliations Conference! We’re developing a schedule packed with education initiatives, funding resources, special speakers and networking opportunities. To register, book a hotel room, and get updated on the latest Conference events, click here. 

The Smithsonian Affiliations National Conference is for current Affiliates only. If you are interested in becoming an Affiliate, or have an application in progress and would like to attend the Conference, please contact Elizabeth Bugbee for more information.

do you live in a place of invention?

 

The iconic Hewlett-Packard garage in 2009. Courtesy of BrokenSphere/ Wikimedia Commons.

Company labs.  Governmental research centers.  Universities.  These places are where many of us think inventions happen.  But how about garages, coffee shops, parks, or other community gathering spots?!  Invention can happen in all kinds of places.  This idea forms the foundation of the Lemelson Center’s exhibition in development, Places of Invention.  It’s about communities “where people, resources, and spaces have come together to spark inventiveness.”  Does that describe your environment?  If so, consider contributing your story to the Places of Invention exhibition website.

The Lemelson Center team has assembled case studies of historic and contemporary invention hubs – Hartford, CT in the late 1800s; Hollywood, CA in the 1930s-40; Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN in the 1950s-60s; Silicon Valley, CA and the Bronx, NY in the 1970s-80s; and Fort Collins, CO today.  Over the course of the next year, the exhibition team will work closely with six Affiliates to create community documentation projects of their places of invention to be featured in the exhibition.  Affiliate partners in this project include: the Heinz History Center (Pittsburgh, PA); American Museum of Science and Energy (Oakridge, TN); Museum of History and Industry (Seattle, WA); Lakeview Museum (Peoria, IL); American Textile History Museum (Lowell, MA); and The Works: Ohio Center for History, Art and Technology (Newark, OH).

But we know there are many more stories to be told.  Take the Lemelson Center’s survey or email them at lemcen@si.edu to describe your place of invention and join the conversation!

kudos! affiliates for february 2012

The Center for Jewish History (New York, New York), announced a $2.5 million gift from The David Berg Foundation to establish The David Berg Rare Book Room.  This contribution will enable the Center and its partners to realize their longstanding goal of creating a public space that showcases and preserves some of the most important works in Jewish history.

Arab American National Museum (Dearborn, Michigan) will receive $15,000 from The Michigan Humanities Council to develop and implement “Setting Our Table,” an interpretive exhibit focusing on Arab American food ways concepts and customs as a gateway to culture. The exhibit will explore the culinary diversity of the Arab world and how foods have changed as Arab immigrants acclimated to life in Michigan and America. The project is funded through the Council’s Major Grants Program “Michigan People, Michigan Places; Our Stories, Our Lives.” The program emphasizes collaboration among cultural, educational and community-based organizations to provide public humanities projects.

coming up in Affiliateland in February 2012

Lots of love spreading around the Affiliate network in February.

FLORIDA
The Museum of Arts and Sciences will be featuring a loan of meteorites from NMNH in Daytona Beach, 2.1.                       

History Miami will host NASM curator Von Hardesty for a talk and book signing about “Black Wings” in Miami, 2.25. 

WASHINGTON
The Northwest Museum of Arts and Culture opens NMNH’s Dig It! The Secrets of Soil in Spokane, 2.4. 

TEXAS
The National Museum of American History will feature the Institute of Texan Cultures in its Let’s Do History Tour, which offers professional development opportunities for elementary and secondary teachers in San Antonio, 2.7-9.

PENNYSYLVANIA
NMAAHC Director Lonnie Bunch will be speaking at a conference on American Slavery, sponsored by the African American Museum in Philadelphia and the National Park Service in Philadelphia, 2.25.

NEW MEXICO
The City of Las Cruces Museum System opens SITES’  Journey Stories in Las Cruces, 2.25. 

CALIFORNIA
Agua Caliente Cultural Museum will host a Festival of Native Film & Culture with a guest programmer from NMAI in Palm Springs, 2.28 – 3.4. 

WYOMING
The National Museum of American History will feature the Buffalo Bill Historical Center in its Let’s Do History Tour, which offers professional development opportunities for elementary and secondary teachers in Cody, 2.29 – 3.1.

Congratulations to those celebrating 10 years of Smithsonian Affiliation in February!

The Works: Ohio Center for History, Art and Technology  

The American Civil War Center At Historic Tredegar  

Lyman Museum and Mission House

Native Film Festival Collaborations

A postcard annoucing the event with Elizabeth Weatherford at the Agua Calinte Cultural Museum

 

Later this month, the Agua Caliente Cultural Museum (Palm Springs, CA) will host their annual Festival of Native Film & Culture in collaboration with the Film and Video Center at the National Museum of the American Indian (NMAI).  Elizabeth Weatherford, Director of the Film and Video Center at NMAI, works closely with Agua Caliente staff to identify exciting films and filmmakers working from a Native American perspective.  A highlight of this popular event is the commentary Elizabeth provides prior to screening the films and an engaging Q&A afterwards.  This year Elizabeth will give an illustrated lecture about the emerging world of indigenous films.

Michael Hammond, Executive Director at Agua Caliente, talks about the partnership:

“Elizabeth has been our guest programmer for several years now.  Our Festival of Native Film and Culture deals with Native American and Indigenous films from around the world.  Elizabeth has her finger on the pulse of the Native and Indigenous film world.  From cutting-edge shorts to feature films, she has given us the best that the genre has to offer.  Under her tutelage, we have grown in both quality and stature.”

The Native Eyes Film Festival at the Arizona State Museum/ Hanson Film Institute

Elizabeth has also worked with other Affiliates on film festivals; she continues to work with the Arizona State Museum and the Hanson Film Institute, both at the University of Arizona on an annual event, the Native Eyes Film Showcase.  Lisa Falk, Director of Education and Associate Curator at the Arizona State Museum, discussed the ways that Elizabeth Weatherford has worked with them:

“Elizabeth, her staff and the resources of the Film and Video Center are invaluable to us as they provide a depth of understanding of Native filmmaking and festival organization as well as connections to filmmakers.  We have worked with Elizabeth Weatherford and her staff on our Native Eyes Film Showcase for years- consulting with them about new films and filmmakers and receiving recommendations.  The NMAI Film and Video Center helps us add breadth and depth to our programming, in particular enabling us to learn about and include films from Canada, Australia, and New Zealand to our offerings.”

Let us know if you’re interested in a film series of your own- we can connect you with Elizabeth Weatherford at NMAI or other resources at the Smithsonian.  (Special thanks to Michael Hammond and Lisa Falk for images and insights!)