Boys and girls from Mount St. Catherine's Primary School, Armagh, will take part in an inspirational Astro-art workshop associated with the International symposium "Light Pollution and its Impact" at the Market Place Theatre, Armagh, on Friday 18 September 2009. The conference is largely supported by the Republic of Ireland's "Discover Science and Engineering" (DSE) programme and the Armagh Observatory through core funding from Northern Ireland's Department of Culture, Arts and Leisure.
The title of the children's contribution, "The Dragon's Egg", is inspired by an ancient Irish myth associated with seeing comets in the sky. The workshop is one of the conference's two Education Sessions led by Robert Hill (Northern Ireland Space Office at Armagh Planetarium). It involves an innovative collaboration between members of the Armagh Rhymers (Dara Vallely, Peter Shortall and Seve Lally), staff from Mount St. Catherine's Primary School (Anne Hart, Brenda Campbell and Briege Delaney) and astronomer Miruna Popescu from Armagh Observatory. The aim is to promote the beauty and understanding of dark starry skies through the media of art, poetry, music and storytelling. The students will produce poems and a musical performance, as well as paintings inspired by the night sky.
The light-pollution conference is part of a year-long series of Armagh Observatory initiatives developed for the United Nations International Year of Astronomy 2009 (IYA2009). Astronomy outreach activities are taking place throughout the island of Ireland largely supported by the DSE and led by Professor Mike Redfern (National University of Ireland, Galway). For more information about the programme of activities organized for the International Year of Astronomy in Ireland check astronomy2009.ie.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION PLEASE CONTACT: Miruna Popescu at the Armagh Observatory, College Hill, Armagh, BT61 9DG. Tel.: 028-3752-2928; FAX: 028-3752-7174; mdparm.ac.uk
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