EDUCATION


Stardome Observatory and Planetarium is a beloved fixture in Tāmaki Makaurau, and is committed to ensuring that celestial stories, astronomy, mātauranga Māori and cosmological science are shared with integrity and honour. Our aim is to inspire and excite fascination, curiosity, and inquiry in the minds of our tamariki and rangatahi and allow our visitors to explore the interconnections between people, Earth, and the cosmos!

Stardome is proud to be a recognised ELC provider, and our education programme is driven by learning objectives that align with Te Whāriki, the New Zealand curriculum, and Te Marautanga. 

Stardome is a proud member of Auckland's GLAM sector, and Te Kāhui Toi Ihiihi - an iniative designed to support Māori Medium ākonga to participate in ELC education within Tāmaki Makaurau.


SCHOOL TRIPS TO STARDOME

A trip to Stardome aims to support your class plan by showing ākonga the fundamental principles of astronomy, how amazing space is, and how precious our Earth is!

We want young people to ask the BIG questions – what else is out there? How far can we go? How did it all begin? We want everyone to look up, feel small, but think big.

Depending on the year level, ākonga will enjoy some activity-based learning in the classroom, time in the Space Gallery & Exhibits area, and a planetarium show in the 360-degree theatre. This immersive experience brings to life the concepts and ideas of astronomy and space exploration giving context to what they are learning in class at school. 


BOOKING INFORMATION 

Everything you need to know about booking a trip to Stardome!

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Pricing (this includes an education session + Planetarium show):

$5 per person (incl. teachers and accompanying adults).

One adult is free with every 8 students.

$175 minimum fee applies groups of 35 people and under.

Session duration:

Sessions with a Stardome Educator will last for approx. 90 minutes. At the end of your session we suggest exploring the park outside while waiting for your bus pick up. Due to limited space we are unable to accommodate you outside of your session time.

Attendance numbers:

We can only accommodate a total of 75 people per booking (this includes students and accompanying adults).

Cancellation policy:

15 working days notice is required for all cancellations. If a cancellation occurs within this timeframe a $175 cancellation fee will be invoiced to the school.

Subsidised admission scheme:

Schools with an EQI of 432+ are welcome to apply for a subsided admission rate of $2 per person (incl. teachers and accompanying adults). A group minimum of 50 people is required.

$125 minimum rate applies to groups of 50 people and under.

The subsidised rate is only applicable for one visit per school each year.

Any cancellations within 15 working days of the visit will be charged a $120 cancellation fee.

Important Links:


EDUCATION PROGRAMMES 

Here we have a list of the education programmes offered at Stardome. If you would like a comprehensive breakdown of the curriculum links and learning objectives then please feel free to email us at education@stardome.org.nz 

OUR LITTLE ASTRONAUTS 
Come sing, dance, and learn with the stars!

Suitable for ECE

In this programme for our youngest stargazers, we have fun and learn about our place in space through reading a book, singing songs, and doing some mindful movements.

We discover the stars of Matariki, learn some new words to describe things in our solar system, and even fly an astronaut into space!

Our Little Astronauts is all about exploring the universe, while also appreciating our special home, Earth!

 

EARTH, HOME 
Connect with our awesome planet and discover our connections to the stars. 

Suitable for Y0-8

In this programme we explore the precious place that we call home and look at the unique conditions that have allowed life to flourish here on Earth.

Together we explore what we are made of, the connections that we have with the stars and the moon, and how these connections have helped us to thrive.

Earth, Home is a programme that celebrates our unique life giving systems. We consider our impact on earth, and the ways that we can contribute to a thriving future.

 

ORIGINS 
Head back in time to witness where you came from. 

Suitable for Y0-8

In this programme we head back to the beginning of space and time to understand where we are and what we are made of.

We explore different stories about our origins and situate ourselves as human beings, on a planet in infinite space. We consider our shared identities and what makes us human. Together we explore really big questions such as, Are we alone? Where did we come from? Where are we going?

Origins also explores the cultural stories of Te Moana Nui a Kiwa and how these have been formed by looking up into the infinite.

 

OUR SOLAR SYSTEM
Get to know our cosmic neighbourhood!

Suitable for Y0-8

In this programme, we explore the worlds that surround the Sun.

We learn about our neighboring planets, the connections these worlds have to ours and the fascinating environments we find in places beyond our own.

Our solar system explores the invisible forces that effect our solar system - including orbital mechanics, gravity and cycles in space.

 

HUMANS IN SPACE
How does astronomy and human curiosity improve life on earth?

Suitable for Y0-13

In this programme, we question our innate curiosity and why we are compelled to look up and step out.

We consider the pull to explore our cosmic shores across time. Together we look at the evolution of journeying and technology across history - from the first waka our ancestors stepped onto, to the most distant robotic emissaries at the edge of our solar system.

Humans in Space examines how space exploration and technological innovation changes life here on Earth.

 

TE WHĀNAU O MATARIKI
Celebrate the meaning of this special time of year!

Suitable for ECE-Y13

Manawatia a Matariki!

In this programme, we explore the cultural and scientific significance of this star cluster and the stories that connect them to Aotearoa.

We locate the stars in the sky and unpack the connection of each star to one another. We explore the relationship they have to te taiao and the tohu/signs that mark seasonal changes.

Te Whānau o Matariki is an opportunity to gain new perspectives on how we measure time and organise our lives around the stars.

 

BEYOND THE KNOWN
Journey through the universe and question the fabric of our reality.

Suitable for Y7-13

In this programme, we break the barriers of physics to explore the edge of the observable universe - and question what lies beyond.

We look at the grandeur of the galaxies, the scope of the universe and the mysterious forces that bind our reality together. We ask; What is inside a black hole? Why is the universe expanding? What is dark matter? Is there a multiverse? 

Beyond the Known is a bespoke session tailored to your specific learning needs. 

 

KŌKŌRANGI MĀORI (MĀORI ASTRONOMY)

Watch this space. Coming soon to a planet near you!


EDUCATION RESOURCES

Is your class learning about astronomy? Here are some useful links for schools and projects below!

 

NASA

A huge site with an incredible range of information! Access info on space exploration, the planets, people in space, and NASA's media releases. Explore NASA's STEM resources for educators and their Universe of Learning.

Astronomical Society of the Pacific

An international non-profit scientific and educational organisation, founded in 1889, that works to increase understanding and appreciation of astronomy. Take a look at their astronomy activities, materials, and kits used by educators, families, and amateur astronomers.

Space.com

What's a light year? How do space telescopes work?  Answers to these questions and more, as well as image of the day on their science and astronomy page.