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Uploaded:2017-08-17
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Jessi and Squeaks show you how to make a pinhole viewer so you can safely watch the solar eclipse!

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SOURCES:

https://eclipse2017.nasa.gov/safety
http://solar-center.stanford.edu/observe/
https://www.timeanddate.com/eclipse/make-pinhole-projector.html
http://electronics.howstuffworks.com/question131.htm
The solar eclipse is so soon! [Squeaks squeaks excitedly] Can you tell how excited Squeaks and I are?

We’re going to be able to see the moon block the sun so it looks like nighttime during the day. We’ve learned all about how an eclipse happens, but there’s one more really important thing we need to talk about — how we’re actually going to watch the eclipse!

We’re going to make a special viewer that will let us see the eclipse safely. And you can follow along and make one for yourself, too! Looking straight at the sun is always very dangerous, because the light from the sun is bad for your eyes, even if it doesn’t feel like it’s hurting you.

It’s dangerous to look at the sun during an eclipse, too, because the moon won’t be completely covering the sun, except in a few places for just a couple of minutes. That means if you look straight at the eclipse, you’ll still be looking at some of the sun’s light and hurting your eyes. One way to safely watch the eclipse is with special eclipse glasses.

If you’re going to use those, you’ll need a grownup to make sure you have a good pair that are safe. But there’s another, super safe way that you can see the eclipse! It’s called a pinhole viewer, and you can make it with things you probably already have at home or school!

All you need are two pieces of stiff, white paper, like a paper plate or a type of thick paper called card stock. Besides that, all you need is a pair of scissors, a thumbtack or needle, a grown-up’s help, and something to decorate your pinhole viewer with if you want to! Have the grown-up help you cut the paper into two squares.

It doesn’t matter too much how big they are, but 13 centimeters, or about 5 inches, on each side should work well! Then use the thumbtack or needle to poke a very tiny hole right in the middle of one of the pieces of paper. And … that’s it! i [Squeaks squeaks] Yep, it’s as easy as that!

If you want to decorate your pinhole viewer, you can color the piece of paper with the hole in it however you want. Just make sure to keep the other piece white! Now, here’s how you use it.

You can test it out before the eclipse so you’ll be ready! Go outside on a sunny day and face away from the sun. Hold the paper with the hole in it over your shoulder, and hold the other piece out in front of you.

Move the second piece of paper toward or away from you until … Do you see that? It’s a projection of the sun! Clear enough to see, but dim enough to look at!

It works because the viewer acts kind of like a camera — except it doesn’t need batteries, and it doesn’t save the picture! Only a little bit of light can fit through that tiny hole in the paper, and when it passes through the hole, it makes a small picture of the sun on the second piece of paper — one that’s dim enough for you to look at safely. Now that we have our eclipse viewer, we’re all set to enjoy the show on August 21st!

If you want to learn more about the eclipse before it happens, Squeaks and I were just talking about that the other day, so you can go check that out! Thanks for joining us, and we’ll see you next time here at the fort!