Week 3: Rainy Days and Baseball Games

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Sunday, June 26, 2016


Victoria DiTomasso

On Saturday, Vanessa, Marissa and I went down to Georgetown to go shopping. We hit a few stores before eating dinner. From there, I met up with Dahlia and Maria to see Finding Dory. On Sunday, Dahlia and I went to the Maker Faire that was held at the University of the District of Columbia. We visited a lot of tables and saw two talks, one about using 3D printing in the classroom and another about students’ personal connection to technology. On Sunday night, Demitri joined the girls in my apartment for a belated birthday celebration. Tabitha baked a cake for me (which was quite a feat given the state of our oven). It turned out surprisingly well and we all enjoyed it; it was a great way to finish off the weekend.

The Maker Faire mascot and me

For most of the week, Samantha, the two graduate students and I reviewed each other’s lesson plans and made the appropriate edits in our own. I have also started doing research for the next lesson plan that I am going to write. It’s going to be about the conflict between native Hawaiians and the astronomical community over the construction of the Thirty Meter Telescope on Mauna Kea. I plan on incorporating the conflicts around telescope construction at Kitt Peak and Mt. Graham.

We did get to have a little fun at ACP this week. Thursday afternoon, the four of us met up with Rebecca from AAPT and Simon to try out a lab activity that Samantha designed based off of the work of Hertha Ayrton. Ayrton was a physicist in the late 19th century who did groundbreaking work on electric arcs and ripples in sand and water. She presented a paper to the Royal Society about her experiments regarding the creation of ripples in sand under moving water, inspired by her observations at the beach. We tried to recreate her experiments for a student lab, without much luck. We also all played a card game, adapted by Rebecca, that can be used to teach students about the scientific process.

Playing with sand...for science!

We had some very rainy days this week that lent themselves to downtime and Netflix watching. Even so, there were a couple after-work adventures. On Monday, Samantha and I ate at the Busboys and Poets by the Catholic University of America. After dinner, we went to the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception and viewed some of the beautiful art that they have inside.

Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception at CUA

On Thursday night, the majority of us interns went with Courtney and Brad to the Congressional Baseball Game. Before we went to the game, we had dinner at TaKorean and delicious ice cream at Jubilee. When we got there, there was a NASA photo-op set up. Of course we all had to take advantage! It ended up being a really fun night.

Posing by the Congressional Baseball Game

Until next time!

Victoria DiTomasso