Psst! Hey, you!! Yeah, you! I’m about to tell you something super exciting. Are you ready? Are you sure? ‘Cause this is pretty darn good. The U.S. Space & Rocket Center just premiered a new traveling showcase, The Science of Archimedes exhibit. As in, this is the first time and first place that the exhibit has been on display. Ever. In the entire world. And if you’re one of the four people who need to visit The Science of Archimedes, it’s pretty much mandatory that you check it out.
This exhibit’s got it all– history, science, math, computer-modeled animations, an activity station, and working replicas of Archimedes’ inventions that you and your students can interact with. (Disclaimer: There are a few that you can’t touch, but just find a museum guide and they will be happy to demo it for you.) Simple machines, solar power, waves, force, density, spirals, pyramids, and ancient Greeks, oh my! There’s even some da Vinci and Galileo for good measure. The whole exhibit is correlated with educational standards, Next Generation Science Standards, Common Core Math, and Alabama College and Career Ready Math, Science, and History. If you are an Alabama teacher and a little worried about those new science standards, don’t panic; you’re in good hands—the entire exhibit is correlated to the new 2015 science standards. Which means a field trip would let you cover several different points in one day. There are also lesson plans available for download on the Space and Rocket Center website. It’s simple – like an inclined plane.
Spoiler alert: Huntsville isn’t super close to Greece. So what’s a lover of the ancient world and its history to do? Hint: Head to your friendly neighborhood space museum! History buffs will appreciate the attention given to the detail of Archimedes’ world. Learn how to tie a toga (or a himation, the Greek version), immerse yourself in the Siege of Syracuse, check out the Pharos Lighthouse, discover the secret of how the Egyptian pyramids were built, stand alongside Archimedes at the scene of his death, and have your own “Eureka!” moment. All without dealing with those pesky airports (unlike the Huntsville International Airport, the only non-pesky airport on earth).
Ok, this is a given. If you’re an engineer, Archimedes is pretty much like your intellectual great-great-great granddaddy. The whole process of how you go about your work—yeah, he came up with that. Find a problem, research and do experiments, develop a theory, and then test the theory with further experiments to fine-tune the theory. Boom. Engineering. Needed a machine to remove a ship from the water? Or set one on fire before it even approached your city? Archimedes was your guy. And his machines worked well. Building good machines was kinda his thing. Also, equilibrium. In his opinion, machines that operate near equilibrium are the best machines. The exhibit also includes designs and machine replicas from Galileo and da Vinci, who both studied Archimedes’ work. So not only will you enjoy playing (conducting research) with their machines, this is a chance to play homage to the men who set out to make the world just a little better, one machine at a time.
Because this exhibit is awesome and you will have lots of fun!
The Science of Archimedes will be at the U.S. Space & Rocket Center until January 31, 2017. Don’t miss your chance to be an explorer and delve into the world and inventions of Greek mathematician Archimedes. So why aren’t you at the museum already? Hurry up and go explore!
Which iHeartHsv blogger wrote this?
Although not born nor raised in Huntsville, being a generally smart lady, Rebecca high-tailed it here as quickly as she could. She graduated from Auburn University with a bachelor’s in history and with a giant crush on the “stuff” of history, whether in a museum or a historic site. Most of her waking hours involve working in museum education for the U.S. Space and Rocket Center. Like any good child of the South, she loves storytelling, which she considers an art form. Rebecca enjoys sharing Huntsville’s tales to anyone who will listen whether during Huntsville Ghost Walks, conducting tours of the Huntsville Depot, leading Breakfast Trolley tours or bringing history to life during the Cemetery Stroll. She is also a member of the Huntsville-Madison County Historical Society and the Huntsville Historic Marker Committee.