Teaching Tools for Astronomy

A collection of educational materials to help discover the ways of the sun, moon, and stars.

This is an assortment of various teaching aids I have developed while teaching astronomy to schoolchildren. Most of the stuff here (actually all of it, so far) consists of PDF files that you can download. Most of it (actually all of it, so far) is free of charge. (If you want a more formal definition, I am making all of these works available under a Creative Commons--Attribution License, which means you may do anything you like with them, as long as you give me credit as the creator.) I'm considering adding paid items — perhaps sundials custom-designed for your latitude, for example — but for now, all I have is free static stuff. The astrolabe is a very old creation that I designed specifically for the latitude of our school. Updated versions for multiple latitudes are in development.

A paper sundial.

A Simple Horizontal Sundial

A two-piece paper sundial for students to print, cut, and assemble.

A Simple Equatorial Sundial

A two-piece equatorial sundial for students to cut out and assemble.

A Cube Sundial

A paper polyhedral sundial for students to make. All five faces tell time whenever they are in sunshine.

A Lunar Phase Dial

A paper "phase clock" to label, cut out, assemble, and use to predict phases and rise times.

A Paper Celestial Sphere

A spherical "map of outer space" to print, draw on, cut out, and tape together.

Printable Planispheres

A flat double-sided celestial sphere, with a sleeve representing the horizon, that students can make, draw on, and use as a constellation calendar.

Slideshow: The Circles of the Sun

A visual aid for illustrating how the sun crosses the sky in different parts of the world.

2019 Planet Calendars

Charts showing where to look for the planets in the sky.