The Aldebaran – Chronicles of the Stars Pilgrim

Conundrum of Astronomy, particularly in South East Asia

The Intangible Universe

Last week, on Oct, 18th 2008, LAPAN (The Indonesian Institute of Aeronautics & Space) was organizing the festival of space science. With the help of Unawe-Indonesia & Langitselatan community, they catered many activities that related to space science, from just playing many games with the children, learning the basic concept of rocketry & space travel by simulation of water-rocket, quiz competition for junior high-school, and visual-aid creation competition for senior high school.

Indeed it was a fiesta.

The festival was intended for catering the students around the district of Haurgombong, (around the complex of Tanjungsari Observatory, which belong to LAPAN), because the area is such a remote area, so it was a great opportunity for the students around to have basic awareness about the space science. I will not write much about the event, because there is already the official report about the event in here, or nice reports from here and here. Also, the winner of the drawing competition can be found in here.

The fiesta can be seen from these videos, posted in youtube:

Now that’s the fiesta, nevertheless, the space is something that intangible. can we touch the stars? Poke the nebulae? Kick Jupiter?

The toys & games for the children, those are the things that tangible, the children can touch, feel, and do whatever they want with the toys, like the toys & games from unawe, well .. those are good things to give insight what is our universe looks like. But, do they have the idea, what is the universe ‘looks’ like?

In a harsh word, to give the best understanding to the children is to ‘drag’ them in the cold & dark night, observe the sky by themself, let them awe & wonder about the universe as they see by themself, just like the night time of the festival, when the sky was dark, but inspiring, when the milkyway (bima sakti as our native language) was unfolded right above our head. What can you tell them about the via lactea?

To quote one of the contributor for the Festival, Ferry M. Simatupang (lecturer from Dept. of Astronomy, ITB), “Astronomy is about the mystery of the nature, it is a pity (if we do not) relish nor appreciate our nature.”, as appear on the local newspaper (Koran Priangan), nicely they report the event (translated in english as: “To Embrace the Stars, To Peek at the Sun”).

To Embrace the Stars, To Peek the Sun

To Embrace the Stars, To Peek at the Sun

Oktober 24, 2008 - Posted by | Astronomy, Culture, Education, Humanity, Nature, Social Activity, Unawe | , , , , , , , ,

4 Komentar »

    Superb!! a really fun program for publics (young generations) to learn astronomy in a fun way. and it’s not just ‘theory’, the experience is far much efficient for them to understand.
    hmmm… wish i was there ๐Ÿ™‚

    congrats for the whole team!! Great work!!
    u can try making the program templates to be ‘duplicated’ in another area.
    (does this also connect to IYA 2009 project of Developing Astronomy Globally?
    and the Teachers’ program for Galileo later?)


    Komentar oleh nia | Oktober 26, 2008 | Balas

  2. Hi Nia. Well I think almost all the communities and institutions of astronomy in Indonesia had almost the same templates for outreach program.

    If we talk about connecting all of this with IYA2009, I think yes it is. Well I think LAPAN has the right to answer all this.

    But as far as I know all outreach program, teacher workshop, night observation could be related with almost all IYA 2009 task group project such as Developing Astronomy Globally, GTTP, UNAWE, Galileoscope and else. It’s all about building awarreness, teaching astronom properly to the public and yes of course in the end all that we do had the same pupose, to develope astronomy in Indonesia.

    And I do hope it is not just for IYA2009 euforia but we will work for the sake of science developement in our country.

    Komentar oleh ivie | Oktober 26, 2008 | Balas

  3. Amiinnnn… ๐Ÿ˜‰
    glad to hear that, hope the action of the program worked continuously later.
    (btw, whose in charge of these? or these are merely from the group of idealits initiatives only? how would you ‘activate’ the program and the (amateur) communities? – yes, of course after successfully built the first group that aware of… ;p)
    i’m sure it’s a huge – long term homework for all of us who cares for science development in our country ๐Ÿ˜‰


    Komentar oleh nia | Oktober 28, 2008 | Balas

  4. to Nia, it was organised by LAPAN, with the help from UNAWE Indonesia and langitselatan community. Hopefully, there’ll be more communities and organizations can organize such an activities like this one for the sake of our future generation.

    Komentar oleh rasdewita | Oktober 28, 2008 | Balas

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