Glastonbury Teachers

Welcome

The Glastonbury Planetarium welcomes all Glastonbury students, teachers and parents. The planetarium is available FREE of charge to all Glastonbury classes. The Glastonbury Planetarium offers out-of-this-world learning experiences. Our programs will immerse your students in stunning visualizations in the unique environment of the planetarium.

  • Grade K - 5 have specific GPS Science program requirements.

  • Grade 6 - 8 have specific GPS Science program requirements.

  • Grades 9 - 12 can select from our extensive library of fulldome Space Shows, Giant Screen films and live classes.

Feel free to select a program that best fits your interests and curiosities from a library of fulldome movies, IMAX films and live presentations. Our programs have been carefully aligned to the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) and to the GPS Elementary Science Curriculum. Both In-Dome and Virtual Field Trip options are available for most programs. For In-Dome Field Trips, the planetarium can seat 1 - 2 classes at a time or a maximum of 70 students and teachers. Virtual Field Trips are streamed to your device(s) using the Zoom platform. Programs utilize the same planetarium software used in our dome theater, Digistar 6. Should you want us to focus on certain concepts or topical areas, please contact us at 860.633 - 4455 ext 4923 or email us at jarcher@crec.org to discuss such options.

Steps to Reserving an In-Dome or Virtual Field Trip

  • Lead teacher will submit an online reservation request form: GPS Planetarium Reservation Form for 2022 - 2023

  • Our Planetarium Coordinator will be in contact with you to confirm your reservation.

  • Download our Field Trip Guide here.

  • Please book at least two weeks in advance and allow 48 hours for confirmation of your field trip.

Grades K - 5 Grade Level Planetarium Experiences

Grade K - One World, One Sky

Young audience members will be thrilled when they find themselves on Sesame Street with their famous friends, Big Bird and Elmo. The fun begins when Elmo's friend, Hu Hu Zhu, visits from China and the three of them take the audience on an exciting journey of discovery to learn about the Sun, stars, and Big Dipper. Elmo and Hu Hu Zhu blast off on an imaginary trip to the Moon and when they return home to Earth everyone discovers that, no matter where we live, we all share the same sky.

Before and after the show, we’ll continue our tour of the night and day sky with What’s Up. We’ll explore what we can see in the sky (stars, planets, the Moon, etc ) and how they move across our sky. Click here is a show preview.

NGSS Alignment: K-ESS2-1, K-ESS2-2

GPS Elementary Curriculum: Whatever the Weather

Class Length: 45 minutes

Downloads: OWOS Educator Guide

Grade 1 - The Moon

What child hasn't looked up at the Moon in wonder. In this interactive planetarium program, children will observe the features on the Moon surface such as craters and even gaze at the far side of the Moon. Back on Earth, children will trace the path of the Moon and Sun in the sky. Finally, we'll explore the many "faces" of the Moon and look at the Moon's changing appearance night after night and even month after month. This is program is a perfect introduction to the Earth, Sun and Moon system presented just for the children.

Grade 2 - Life of Trees

Take an adventurous journey of exploration into the wondrous world of the Life of Trees. Taking the perspective of insects, the film reveals the magic of the microcosm. Students will learn the secrets: How do plants get their food from the sun? How does water get from the roots to the top of the crown? And how does all this make life on our Earth possible? Concepts presented include: the life cycle, photosynthesis, water transport, reproduction, biodiversity and sustainability. Of course we'll take a virtual rest underneath our favorite tree for a look at the night sky.

Grade 3 - Earth & Our Human Impact

Humans impact the physical environment in many ways: overpopulation, pollution, burning fossil fuels, and deforestation. Changes like these have triggered climate change, soil erosion, poor air quality, and undrinkable water. A better understand of our global connection to each other and the Earth will help us learn more about what we can do to ensure that our cohabitation with the natural world leaves a healthy, sustainable planet for generations to come. This program features the shows Habitat Earth, Ice Worlds and a live presentation on Earth's place in space.

Grade 4 - Dynamic Earth

A beautiful blue planet. The Earth is a giant heat engine constantly working to expel its inner heat into the cold universe that surrounds us. Geologic processes that operate on a global scale have a profound affected on our planet. We'll explore theses geologic processes, earthquakes and volcanos, that have and continue to shape the Earth. This program features the shows Supervolcanoes, Earthquake, and a live presentation the geologic processes found in the Solar System.

Grade 5 - Earth, Moon, Sun & Sky

Cycles and patterns are found most everywhere in the universe. This program focuses on the causes of day and night, the causes of the seasons and the changes (phases) in the Moon’s appearance. Using the planetarium as a laboratory, students will observe and predict the cycles of day and night, the Moon's daily and annual motion in the sky, and the Sun's motion through the year. By having a deeper understanding of these patterns, we have made technological advances such as telescopes, periscopes, microscopes and even eye glasses to have a better “view” of the world around us and improve our quality of life.

Grades 6 - 8 Grade Level Planetarium Experiences

Grade 6 - Origins of Life

Origins of Life deals with some of the most profound questions of life science: the origins of life and the human search for life beyond Earth. Starting with the Big Bang, in chronological order, the show deals with the prebiotic chemistry in the Universe, the formation of stars, formation of solar systems, and the first life on Earth. Origins of Life then covers the great extinctions, as well as our search for (primitive) life beyond planet Earth. Origins of Life is an inspirational journey through time — and a celebration of life on Earth. It features many recent discoveries related to life science, demonstrating that if there was ever a time that science made its greatest advances, it's right now!


Grade 7 - Planet Earth

Scientists now believe that our galaxy is filled with solar systems, including up to a billion planets roughly the size of our own. Birth of the Planet Earth employs advanced, data-driven, cinematic-quality visualizations to explore some of the greatest questions in science today: How did Earth become a living planet in the wake of our solar system’s violent birth? What does its history tell us about our chances of finding other worlds that are truly Earth-like? We'll explore the motions, patterns and objects the make up our Solar System for a deeper understanding of Earth's place and scale in the Universe.

Grade 8 - Concepts of Physics

Immerse yourself in the adventure and extremes of spacecraft engineering in From Dream To Discovery: Inside NASA. This fascinating 30-minute show about space engineering begins with an exploration of the Hubble Space Telescope, with its many intricate parts that must work together to help this observatory achieve great things. From there, we explore the James Webb Space Telescope, currently under construction and testing at NASA. Finally, the show explores the New Horizons mission to Pluto, revealing the engineering challenges the mission has faced in its 10-year headlong rush to a distant and fascinating world.

Big Astronomy: People, Places, Discoveries explores three observatories located in Chile, at extreme and remote places. It gives examples of the multitude of STEM careers needed to keep the great observatories working. The show is narrated by Barbara Rojas-Ayala, a Chilean astronomer. A great deal of astronomy is done in the nation of Chile, due to its special climate and location, which creates stable, dry air. With its high, dry, and dark sites, Chile is one of the best places in the world for observational astronomy. The show takes you to three of the many telescopes along Chile’s mountains. It takes many people with diverse backgrounds, talents, and skills to run a world-class observatory. Meet these people and share in the wonder of the sky—and the excitement of discovery.

Grades 9 - 12 Grade Level Planetarium Experiences

The Sky Tonight (Spring, Summer, Fall & Winter)

The sky above is both dark and mysterious. Focusing on naked-eye astronomy, enjoy a tour of the stars, constellations and planets of the current sky.

The Ever-Changing Sky

An introduction to how we look at and organize the sky from coordinate systems, time measurements and celestial navigation to the motion and appearance of the Moon and planets in the sky.

The Planets Show

Travel to the depths of our Solar System to exploration the physical features of planets, moons, and asteroids. We’ll present some of the latest planetary science and imagery to help understand the structure our Solar System.


Life Cycle of Stars

Travel through space to witness the birth, life and death of stars. We’ll explore how stars form, how they live and how they, sometimes violently, end their life. Learn about nebulas, supernovas, black holes, white dwarfs, and more during a journey through our galaxy’s most fascinating stellar objects.

The Deep Sky: Nebula, Star Clusters, Galaxies

Beyond the visible stars, planets and constellations of the night sky are hidden celestial gems. Travel deep into the night sky on a treasure hunt for celestial objects that exist outside our solar system.


Fire & Ice: Asteroids, Comets and Meteors

Impacts have reshaped the Earth’s surface and are clues to the formation of our solar system. Both terrifying and beautiful, comets, asteroids and meteors have caused destruction and also been the bringer of life. Explore these mysterious objects, where they are found, what they are made of and the clues they offer to our past and future.


Universe: The Grand Tour

Blast off from Earth to the farthest reaches of the universe. We’ll explore Earth’s location in the Milky Way, travel to other galaxies and look at the large scale structure of the universe. This program explores the big ideas of our universe.


Exoplanets : The Search for Life

Planets are not unique to our solar system. Since the discovery of the first planet orbiting another star in 1995 we have found thousands of exoplanets. We’ll explore the variety of exoplanets found so far, is there life on other planets and how we find exoplanets.

The Red Planet: Life, Water & Robots

The planet Mars has fascinated humanity since the beginning of time. NASA and others have their sights set on the Red Planet. We'll explore Mars to understand the planet's history and physical characteristics, why we are so obsessed with it, and the the vehicles and rockets that will one day take us beyond the Moon to Mars.


StarGazing 101: A Beginner's Guide

Learn the basics of the night sky. An introduction to how we look at and organize the sky from coordinate systems, time measurements and celestial navigation to the motion and appearance of the Moon and planets in the sky. We'll introduce to you what to look for, how to look and some useful tools for touring the night sky. Looking to buy a telescope? We'll present what you need to know to purchase and use that first telescope.

Full Dome Space Shows

Large Format Films