Aug 11

The American Association for the Advancement of Science, publishers of Science Magazine, Honours Deirdre Kelleghan for her ‘Deadly Moons’ Drawing Workshop with the Prestigious SPORE Award.

Deadly Moons an interactive drawing workshop for children created by by EAAE's Irish National Representative Deirdre Kelleghan has been recognised for its educational value by Science Magazine, the publication of The American Association for the Advancement of Science.

Deadly Moons is an interactive drawing workshop. It teaches children aged 6 – 12 about our moon and some of the other exotic moons in our solar system. Deirdre Kelleghan created ‘Deadly Moons’ in March 2008, she found that children had a very positive reaction to it. The title of the workshop was inspired from the local dialect children use in Ireland, they have said to her ‘that’s deadly’ when they looked at the moon through her telescope.  ‘To children the word ‘Deadly’ means ‘Totally Amazing’, therefore it was an already welcoming positive word and that’s the appeal of the title’ - says Deirdre.

It is Deirdre’s belief ‘that awareness of our moon and the Universe in general should be fundamental to the education of young children.  When I found that UNAWE were looking for downloadable resources, I was delighted to offer the Deadly Moons workshop to them as they could reach more children than I could ever do’.

Deirdre Kelleghan’s Deadly Moons workshop has been welcomed in Schools and Observatories in Ireland. The Irish Girl Guide movement has also embraced the workshop in their Centenary Year.  So too have many County Libraries in various locations in Ireland.  The Draiocht Arts Centre heralded the Deadly Moons workshop as a very successful community exhibition. Deirdre was also invited to give her Deadly Moon workshop by the Astronomical League and the Observers Society of New York at Hofstra University,USA.

The Science Prize for Online Resources in Education (SPORE) has been established to encourage innovation and excellence in education, as well as to encourage the use of high-quality on-line resources by students, teachers, and the public.

Deirdre’s Deadly Moon workshop shares the SPORE award with UNAWE i.e. Universe Awareness for Young Children

Deirdre goes on to say that she ‘ is very honoured indeed to receive this recognition and she offers special thanks to The Dublin Institute of Advanced Studies, Blackrock Castle Observatory and Dublin City Libraries for their nominations.’  Several schools have used Deirdre’s workshops to enhance their applications for Discover Science and Engineering’s - Primary Science Award.

Carolina Ödman-Govender, international project manager for UNAWE between 2005 and 2010. “We are delighted to share this prize with Deadly Moons, which is also one of the most popular activities contributed to the UNAWE website

UNAWE and Deirdre Kelleghan’s ‘Deadly Moons’ have been working together since 2008. According to the present UNAWE International Project Manager, Pedro Russo, “Deadly Moons and other educational materials are uploaded regularly to the UNAWE web site, so that they can be distributed, adapted and translated for use in other countries.

Previous laureates of the SPORE Award have been: MIT Open Courseware and The Periodic Table of Videos.

You can find out more about UNAWE and Deadly Moons in the SPORE essay published on August 26th online and in Science Magazine - One of the World’s Leading Scientific Journals.


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