I am a registered Republican. I have been since 1981, when I first registered to vote.

I have been a proud member of my party. I have hailed it’s achievements and criticized it’s failings. It has been styled as the proud party of Lincoln – the Grand Old Party.

And that’s the pity…the character of Lincoln no longer resonates within the party. He is ancient history – an irrelevant coincidence of history. Republicans should be embarrassed to ever invoke his name again.

No, this is the party of McCarthy, who destroyed careers and lives with his smear tactics while conducting a wide-ranging witch hunt for communists and homosexuals.

This is the party of Nixon, who resigned in shame to avoid impeachment and removal from office.

This is the party of Bush (43) who, at best, started a war by mistake.

And now, since Donald Trump has grabbed the party by the P***y it is the party owned and operated by a morally bankrupt, racist man. A man who is probably the least intellectually gifted president ever. And, yet, he is a man Republicans are unwilling to stand up too.

Make America Great Again is a call to action for people who are looking backwards, who yearn for a time when America was at it’s apex of power and prestige. It’s an illusory image. When was this idealistic time? It’s smoke and mirrors that captivated just enough of the electorate to bring this man to power.

In this political atmosphere, criticizing the country or president is equated with being disloyal. It echoes of hearings on un-American activities. This kind of hyper-patriotism has a name. We’ve seen it before, we’ve fought against it and suddenly it’s here, in the oval office, at the campaign rallies – Fascism has come to America.

Democrats, We need your help.

The Nation needs your help.

The World is watching.

You need to focus and defeat this man in November, 2020. In the coming primary season, you must compete to select the best candidate without devolving into the usual chaos and back-biting of a crowded primary field. You must all be willing to put personal goals and aspirations aside in order to put the entire weight of the party behind one excellent candidate.

You can not be distracted by the day-to-day turmoil of the executive branch. You must not let the evidence, tweeted almost daily, of his unfitness for office derail you from your ultimate goal. Don’t waste energy on impeachment talk or meaningless votes. You must be laser-focused on one thing…

It’s the Election, stupid.

Bill Clinton defeated a sitting president based almost entirely on his determination to only discuss the economy. “It’s the economy, stupid.” was the mantra James Carville instituted in the Clinton campaign that defeated George Bush (41). It meant, no matter what the issue, no matter what the question, pivot to the economy. That’s all Clinton wanted to talk about and he defeated a president who, at one time, sported a 90% approval rating.

The republicans have been seduced and bullied by Trump. Our only hope is for the Democrats to defeat him.

Choose a candidate with a moral compass. Choose a candidate who can bring people together – not drive wedges between them. Choose a candidate who stands for something. But, most importantly, Democrats, choose a candidate who can win in the electoral collage.

This man must be defeated – he is fundamentally dangerous to our Republic.


When I look around staff meetings at school, I am reminded that I am, by far, the oldest core teacher for our 7th & 8th grade students.

While some may see my age as a disadvantage, I do not. It provides me with life experiences that no other teacher on my team can match.

When President George H.W. Bush passed away during the last school year, I was the only core teacher who had meaningful memories of his presidency. I was the only teacher old enough to have actually voted for him – and I had. Even though I am a science teacher, I could speak about him from the perspective of my own life experience – not something I read in a textbook, or a two-minute video I watched on YouTube.

When I was 10, way back in 1969, I witnessed the greatest engineering feat of the 20th century – I saw Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin walk on the moon.FullSizeRender

Memory is a funny thing – it’s not always accurate. Sometimes it gets things mixed up. Sometimes it even adds or subtracts things. But, my memory of this day is spot on. I’ve checked the records and they align exactly with what my 10-year-old brain recorded.

It happened on a Sunday afternoon. I was in the den playing Hot Wheels with my best friend, Bobby Philips. Around 4 o’clock, my dad came downstairs and asked Bobby, “Don’t you think you want to go home and watch the moon landing with your family?” Bobby said it was okay, that his family wasn’t watching anyway. That was when my father told him to go home.

We watched the moon landing as a family on our big black-and-white TV in the living room. By the time my father came to get me, Neil and Buzz were already descending to the surface. It was exciting – the TV was showing an animation of what was happening along with live views of the control room at the Johnson Space Center in Houston.

“Houston, Tranquillity Base here. The Eagle has landed” crackled over the radio and we all cheered. Well, not so much my sister, she was just 13 months old. We were all excited and relieved and I could see the pride in my parent’s eyes. It was inconceivable that people were actually on the moon, but they were.

Later that night, after I had long since fallen asleep, my parents woke me. “They’re getting ready to step outside,” someone said and they hustled me off to their bed to watch on their little 12” black-and-white set. I have to confess, staying up late – in this case nearly 11p.m. has never been my strong suit. I struggled to stay awake. My parents nudged me back to consciousness a few times before Neil started down the ladder.

The TV broadcast was showing a grainy view from a remote control camera aimed at the ladder and footpad. I couldn’t make heads or tails of what I was seeing. I couldn’t see Neil. I couldn’t make out the ladder. It was just a jumble of black, grey and white. But, the audio I could understand.

“I’m at the foot of the ladder”

“That’s one small step for a man, one giant leap for mankind.”

And then, I was whisked back to my own bed, a very tired little boy.

I was by no means the only person who watched the live broadcast. To this day – 50 years later – it remains the most viewed live TV broadcast in history. And think about this, the first step happened in the middle of the night or very early morning for all of Europe and Asia. Everyone who could, was watching. People stayed up late, got up early,  or woke themselves in the middle of the night to witness this stunning achievement.

It was the culmination of the space race. It was an unassailable American victory, but it was bigger than that. It was not just an American achievement, it was a human achievement. It was humanity’s first, tentative step beyond our home planet and one that we have not repeated since 1972.

On the plaque the astronauts left behind, are the words:

“Here men from the planet Earth first set foot upon the moon, July 1969 A.D. We came in peace for all mankind.”

I was there to experience it and now, as a teacher, I pass those memories on to a new generation.


We’ve completed another revolution around the sun and 2018 has ended. It’s time for my annual reading recap. I start each year with several goals:

  • I want to read a minimum of 20 books,
  • I want to read at least one classic,
  • I try to read one book about baseball.

For the ninth consecutive year, I have met or exceeded my goals with the exception of the baseball book. I never got around to reading a baseball book this year. I did read a book about football, so I guess that kinda meets that goal. 9780451530578

In 2018, I read or listened to 30 books. There was a lot of science and a lot of space – naturally. I reread two books – one on purpose and one by accident. I read four biographies/memoirs.

I find I’m listening to more books than I’m actually reading. I’m having a hard time reading at night because I’m so tired. I do always have a book to read, but it’s been slow going at night. I read a few pages then get sleepy, so I stop for the evening.

I only read one classic but it was a great one: A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens. I loved it. It is an awesome story.

The best books I read in 2018?  This is hard because I read a lot of good books.  My top three in no particular order were:

Touching History: The Untold Story of the Drama That Unfolded in the Skies Over America on 9/11  – A book about 9/11 written by an airline pilot that tells the story from the perspective of the pilots, air traffic controllers and military.

On Desperate Ground: The Marines at The Reservoir, the Korean War’s Greatest Battle  – an great recounting of the battle at the Chosin Reservoir. It’s fast-paced, fascinating and filled with drama and heroism. Someone needs to make a movie about this.

One Second After  – In an instant America is plunged back into the dark ages. This is the story of one town and how it struggled to cope and survive.

Other favorites included; The Good Shepherd – a fictional account of a World War II destroyer captain and the convoy he’s responsible to keep safe. I believe there is a movie in production based on this book.md13227743805

Here’s my complete list of the books I read in 2018 – I’ve indicated audiobooks and linked some of my favorites. In 2019, I’ll have to make up for the missing baseball book. Anyone know a great book about baseball?

Devotion: An Epic Story of Heroism, Friendship, and Sacrifice

First They Killed My Father (Audiobook)

The Good Shepherd 

The Universe (Audiobook)

Seveneves – I loved the first half of the book. The second half was good but not nearly as good as the first.

Atomic Adventures (Audiobook)

One Second After (Audiobook)

What it’s Like to be a Dog (Audiobook) – Boring. I fell like the title and summary of this book are misleading. Its really not that much about “what it’s like to be a dog.”

The Tale of the Dueling Neurosurgeons: The History of the Human Brain as Revealed by True Stories of Trauma, Madness, and Recovery (Audiobook)

Stone by Stone: The Magnificent History in New England’s Stone Walls. I saw this book referenced on Chronicle and thought it would be interesting. It was for about 60 pages. I slogged through the other 244 pages. I should have just stopped.

Neil Armstrong: A Life of Flight (Audiobook)

Squid Empire: The Rise and Fall of the Cephalopods (Audiobook)

A Tale of Two Cities (Audiobook)

The Hidden Lives of Owls: The Science and Spirit of Nature’s Most Elusive Birds (Audiobook)91v+9486xvl

The Rise and Fall of the Dinosaurs: A New History of a Lost World

Pandora’s Lab: Seven Stories of Science Gone Wrong (Audiobook)

The Long Tomorrow

Chasing New Horizons: Inside the Epic First Mission to Pluto

Teach Like a Pirate: Increase Student Engagement, Boost Your Creativity, and Transform Your Life as an Educator – Great title, not a great book. I didn’t get much out of this. Not recommended.

Bringing Columbia Home: The Untold Story of a Lost Shuttle and Her Crew

Artemis (Audiobook)

I, Me, Mine – This is a biography of George Harrison. As I was reading it, many parts seemed quite familiar. As it turns out, I read it about ten years ago.

Into the Raging Sea: Thirty-Three Mariners, One Megastorm, and the Sinking of El Faro – This was very good.

Cuba Libre: A 500-Year Quest for Independence (Audiobook)

Opening Wednesday at a Theater Or Drive-In Near You: The Shadow Cinema of the American 1970s (Audiobook)

On Desperate Ground: The Marines at The Reservoir, the Korean War’s Greatest Battle (Audiobook)

Gridiron Genius: A Master Class in Winning Championships and Building Dynasties in the NFL (Audiobook)

Touching History: The Untold Story of the Drama That Unfolded in the Skies Over America on 9/11 (Audiobook)138775_1

Rocket Men: The Daring Odyssey of Apollo 8 and the Astronauts Who Made Man’s First Journey to the Moon (Audiobook)

Rendezvous with Rama (Audiobook) – This may be my favorite science fiction book of all time. This was the third time I’ve read/listened to it. It never gets old. I love Clark’s style. A classic of hard sci-fi. Highly recommended.


On Sunday, December 30, 2018, Charles W. McKellar, loving husband, father and grandfather, passed away at the age of 90. Charles was a resident of Leesburg and formerly of Ft. Myers Beach and Wickford, Rhode Island.

Charles was born May 2, 1928 in British Columbia, Canada to Chester and Dorothy (Bennett) McKellar. He served in the United States Marine Corps for 22 years retiring as mck2012052 copyCaptain, after which he managed the data processing department and other units at Brown and Sharpe Manufacturing Company in Rhode Island for the next 21 years.

On June 26, 1954, Charles married Barbara (Lord) McKellar and raised two children, Mark W. McKellar and Lori M. McKellar.

Charles served in the Korean War and participated in  the Chosin Reservoir campaign. He was awarded the Bronze Star with “V” for valor for his efforts in reinforcing Fox Company, thus ensuring a successful withdrawal from North Korea. He was active in The Chosin Few, a fraternal organization to support the men who participated in the battle.

charles w. mckellarCharles was an active beekeeper in Rhode Island. He is past-president/director and lifetime member of the Eastern Apicultural Society. He was also an active member of the Rhode Island Beekeepers Association and frequently spoke about beekeeping to schools and various social groups. In his retirement years, he enjoyed running, playing tennis and cycling.

He was preceded in death by his father, Chester, mother, Dorothy and three brothers, Earl, Chester and Donald.

Charles is survived by his wife of 64 years, Barbara; his children, Mark (Laura) and Lori (Ian); and his grandchildren, Mark and David.

Military interment services to be held at the Florida National Cemetery in Bushnell, Florida – date to be announced. In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to the Semper Fi Fund.

“For it isn’t your mother, your father or wife

whose judgment upon you must pass,

but the man whose verdict counts most in your life

is the one staring back from the glass.

He’s the fellow to please,

never mind all the rest.”


We Threw Rocks

10Oct18

Mark has made kind of a thing about writing nice anecdotes about the rest of us on special days. Today is my turn to return the favor.

One of my favorite memories with Mark was when we were living in Manchester, Ct. It was a short-lived stay. Laura had accepted a job with the city newspaper and after a very short time, realized it was not a good fit (They were frickin’ crazy). I think we were in Manchester for just six weeks. and two of those weeks were spent living in a hotel room. We call this period “The year we lost our minds” for good reason.

Anyway, the apartment we moved into was right off Rt 84 outside of Hartford. A new off and on-ramp was being constructed near the apartment complex and one day Mark and I went exploring. We parked on the still-dirt road and hiked up a large hill with a single tree left at the summit. It had been a larger hill before the civil engineers carved two large slices out of it for the new roadways.

Once we go to the top, it was like a diamond shaped meadow with that one tree. We walked around, looked around and there really wasn’t anything to do up there…….except throw rocks.

And that’s what we did – we threw rocks down onto the construction site. Since we were pretty high up we could throw them pretty far. We cleaned that meadow-remnant clear of rocks.

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He loved it. I mean, how often does a parent say “Let’s throw rocks?” We’re usually the ones yelling “Put that rock down,” “Do not throw rocks at the car,” etcetera, etcetera.

We had a blast. It was simple fun. And I’m pretty sure, Mark will remember it too – and he wasn’t quite three yet.

Happy Birthday and thanks for the memory.

Epilogue: For years and years, every time we passed that exit, I would look for our tree at the top of the hill between the, now completed and very busy, on and off-ramps. Finally, about ten years later, it was gone. A victim of time. But, even now, whenever I pass that hill, I still glance to the top where we threw rocks together and smile.


We’ve reached the end of 2017 and it’s time for my annual reading recap. I start each year with several goals:

  • I want to read a minimum of 20 books,
  • I want to read at least one classic,
  • I try to read one book about baseball.

For the eighth consecutive year, I have met or exceeded my goals. (Maybe I should raise them?) In 2017, I read or listened to 30 books. There was a lot of science and a lot of space – naturally. I read five biographies/memoirs about an astronaut, a writer, a TV actor, a stand-up comedian, and a rock ’n roll icon. If 2016 was my year to read about astronauts, then 2017 was my year for biographies/memoirs.

My classics included; A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court, The Call of the Wild, Of Mice and Men. A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court by Mark Twain was suggested to me by a fellow science teacher who said it was perfect for 2017 since a solar eclipse is a major element in the story. These were all excellent and I am amazed at how well these books hold up after all these years. I guess there’s a reason they are considered “classics.”

I read two baseball books last year: NPR Driveway Moments Baseball: Radio Stories That Won’t Let You Go and Lost Ballparks. Lost Ballparks was excellent – it explores the history of the baseball park with outstanding photos. I learned so much about ballparks across the country and Boston in particular.

The best book I read in 2017?  For me it was Sailor and Fiddler: Reflections of a 100-Year-Old Author by Herman Wouk. I say “for me” because I am so familiar with his work. I have41sncs6v8ql-_sx309_bo1204203200_ read almost everything this author has published. He relates the behind the scenes work on The Caine Mutiny, The Winds of War, War and Remembrance, and one my all-time favorites – Youngblood Hawke (I should probably hunt down the movie made from this book). If you don’t know the writer’s work, you might not appreciate the way I did.

Other favorites included; Dear Fahrenheit 451: Love and Heartbreak in the Stacks – about, well…books; and Born to Run by Bruce Springsteen.

Here’s my complete list of the books I read in 2017 – I’ve indicated audiobooks and linked some of my favorites. I wonder what 2018 holds for me?

  • Disrupted: My Misadventure in the Start-Up Bubble
  • So Close to Home: A True Story of an American Family’s Fight for Survival During World War II
  • Belichick and Brady: Two Men, the Patriots, and How They Revolutionized Football
  • Mary and Lou and Rhoda and Ted: And All the Brilliant Minds Who Made The Mary Tyler Moore Show a Classic15803728
  • The Violinist’s Thumb: And Other Lost Tales of Love, War, and Genius, as Written by Our Genetic Code
  • The Warmup Guy
  • NPR Driveway Moments Baseball: Radio Stories That Won’t Let You Go (Audiobook)
  • Prisoners of Geography: Ten Maps That Explain Everything About the World (Audiobook)
  • Talk Like TED: The 9 Public-Speaking Secrets of the World’s Top Minds (Audiobook)
  • The Man in the High Castle
  • Exoplanets : Diamond Worlds, Super Earths, Pulsar Planets, and the New Search for Life beyond Our Solar System (Audiobook)
  • Astronomy: The Heavenly Challenge (Audiobook)
  • For the Love of Physics: From the End of the Rainbow to the Edge of Time – A Journey Through the Wonders of Physics (Audiobook)
  • Incredible Stories from Space: A Behind-the-Scenes Look at the Missions Changing Our View of the Cosmos 
  • A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court (Audiobook)
  • Born to Run
  • Sailor and Fiddler: Reflections of a 100-Year-Old Author
  • Give Me Tomorrow: The Korean War’s Greatest Untold Story–The Epic Stand of the Marines of George Company (Audiobook)1441772758
  • Astrophysics for People in a Hurry (Audiobook)
  • The Language God Talks: On Science and Religion
  • Periodic Tales: A Cultural History of the Elements, from Arsenic to Zinc (Audiobook)
  • Tom Swift in the City of Gold (Audiobook)
  • Hidden Warships: Finding World War II’s Abandoned, Sunk, and Preserved Warships
  • Dear Fahrenheit 451: Love and Heartbreak in the Stacks: A Librarian’s Love Letters and Breakup Notes to the Books in Her Life. (Audiobook)
  • The Call of the Wild (Audiobook)
  • Of Mice and Men (Audiobook)
  • Endurance: A Year in Space, A Lifetime of Discovery
  • Lost Ballparks
  • Annihilation: A Novel (The Southern Reach Trilogy #1)
  • Talking as Fast as I Can: From Gilmore Girls to Gilmore Girls (and Everything in Between)

The last time a total eclipse passed over the continental United States was February 1979. I was in college and used a pinhole projector to view it from my front yard. From my vantage point in Rhode Island, it was a magnitude .70.

I was awestruck.

It’s been 38 years, but when I learned that another total eclipse would pass over the country this summer, I knew I had to experience totality. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime event

Planning

I spent a year planning my umbral experience. I looked over all the maps, weather projections and event listings. I read scores of articles from experienced eclipse-viewers. I located resources to provide information on locations, events and weather. Ultimately, my goal was to locate a place that provided cloudless skies and good highways running east and west (in case I had to get out from under clouds).

I considered going out west to Wyoming or Idaho, where clear skies were almost a certainty. When I factored in my budget, I realized I could not realistically travel that far. I needed some place that was within a couple of day’s drive from Massachusetts. That brought my planning to the east coast.

I looked at South Carolina, but the unpredictable weather near the coast was a non-starter. As I traced the path of totality backwards to the west, I briefly contemplated trying a location in the Great Smoky Mountains. This might provide an elevated view west of the mountain range where I could see the moon’s shadow racing across Tennessee. But I quickly dismissed this idea when I looked at long-range weather patterns. They’re called the smoky mountains for a reason.

I finally settled on the area that included Tennessee, Kentucky and Illinois. This area met my criteria, and included the largest city in the path of totality – Nashville. Once I saw the cost of flights from Boston to Nashville, the idea of driving was done. It was faster, cheaper and easier to fly and rent a car, than to drive.

My family decided to join me and we started making plans in earnest. When I travel, I like to factor in some extra time in case of flight delays or cancellations so we planned to arrive the Saturday before the eclipse. Nashville is a city of 600,000 people. It has thousands of hotel rooms, restaurants and entertainment venues. We’d have something to do while we waited.

We booked rooms, flights and the car way back in February. I think we beat the rush because the hotel rate was very reasonable – about a third of the rates that were being charged a few weeks before the eclipse.

I ordered our ISO-compliant eclipse glasses and a set of maps. On one map, I traced out the path of totality through Illinois, Kentucky and Tennessee. Based on the highways and last-minute weather forecast, I could use my map to adjust our viewing point to ensure we could find clear skies.

As it turned out, I was not the only person planning to view the eclipse. Over a million others chose Nashville as their eclipse-viewing site. When we arrived two days before the big event, the airport was insane. The car rental agency had pulled in cars from all over the country but still could not keep up with demand. They couldn’t find our car, so they just handed us the keys to another (larger) vehicle and sent us on our way.

Every hotel room in Nashville was booked. The restaurants and bars were busy and both special “eclipse shows” at the Grand Ole Opry were sold out.

I did not consider that all these great east-west highways would end up being bumper-to-bumper in the days and hours leading up to the event. Those million-plus visitors to the Nashville area pretty much meant we weren’t going anywhere in case of poor weather. It was Nashville or bust.IMG_4764

I watched the weather reports closely with fingers crossed. The forecast was mostly sunny with some clouds bubbling up from the afternoon heat. The TV weather forecaster suggested the eclipse might slow the formation of those clouds.

Experiencing Totality

At 11:58 CDT I put on my glasses and looked up at the sun….nothing. I waited a few minutes and checked again, and now I could discern a small, curved chunk missing from the upper right quadrant of the Sun.

It was happening. Over the next hour or so, I checked back regularly and, as the the moon obscured more and more of the sun, I made note of some interesting changes happening around me.

I was sitting in the shade under some trees and noticed the projection of the partial eclipse on the ground. All over the bricks at my feet were tiny images of the partial eclipse. The leaves were acting as pinhole projectors. This was my second time in the penumbra but this was going to be dramatically different. No pinhole projector for me, I was using my glasses to watch this celestial event directly and this time, I was in the path of totality.

With about 30 minutes to go, I noticed a busy breeze kicking up. I did not notice a dramatic temperature drop, but I think the eclipse prevented the usual temperature climb in the early afternoon. It didn’t get cool, but it never got hot either.

I had friends in Oregon and Wyoming so I kept up with their experiences on social media. They posted pictures of the 360 degree sunset and totality. The moon’s shadow was sweeping across the country at 1,800 mph. I was getting really excited.

Things started to look…a little….weird as we got closer and closer to totality. The quality of light changed. There were crisper shadows and a slight dimming of the light around us. It felt like there was a very slight yellow cast to everything.

The place we were observing announced that they had turned off the light sensors so our view should not be obscured by a host of street lights turning on during the eclipse. About two minutes before totality, it was looking like dusk. It was getting darker by the second. The lights at the shopping mall across the street came on, which elicited a roar from the crowd.

As the moon’s shadow raced towards us, nearly upon us, I realized the cicadas had stopped their incessant chirping. That sound is so ubiquitous, it’s absence was obvious. As the moon fully blocked the sun, it was as if someone had turned out the lights. The difference between 99% and 100% is dramatic – it has to be seen to be believed.

We were in the umbra. A huge cheer went up from the crowd – and then it was quiet as people stared, slack-jawed at the sight above them.265510main_aug1totality1_full_full-0

The sky was dark blue – not black like at night but still quite dark. I scanned the sky for planets and stars. I was hopeful to see Mercury, Venus, Mars and Jupiter in addition to Betelgeuse. We had some clouds overhead and I could easily find Venus but the other objects were either not visible or hidden behind the clouds.

The image of a total eclipse is incredible. It looks just like the pictures but it’s real. It’s hanging in the sky overhead. I can only imagine how terrifying this must have been to the ancients who had no understanding of what was happening.

Totality is fast – we were expecting about 2 minutes and it goes by in what feels like a few heartbeats. The first rule of observing a total eclipse, from many different sources, is “Don’t photograph the eclipse” just experience it. That was good advice. Two minutes is not much time…and it feels like it’s over in a fraction of that time.

Near the end, a large cloud slowly obscured the sun, costing us about 20 seconds of totality. And then, even hidden behind that cloud, the lights came back on. It was over….the light returned. It was that fast….back to 99%, 98%, 97% the cicadas started their infernal racket again…and all returned to normal.

Suddenly, everyone around me was talking. I heard snatches of conversation: “wow,” “awesome,” “unbelievable,” “incredible.”

And it was all those things. A total eclipse is something to be experienced. It’s hard to explain how it feels – you really just have to be there.

Aftermath

I teach eclipses as part of Lowell’s 8th grade Planetary Science unit. I’ve taught eclipses every year I’ve been a teacher. It’s a standard I enjoy teaching, and now, I can’t wait to teach it again.

I feel much better prepared to teach this learning target having experienced a total eclipse. It’s not that I’ll teach the content in a different or better way, but now I can infuse those lessons with my personal, first-hand experience. It will add an emotional component to, what many students consider to be dry content. My experience can serve as a hook to ignite my students collective imagination.

I will encourage them, as I encourage everyone, to get into totality. We have another total eclipse in the United States in 2024. And this one will pass through Northern New England – not too far to go for a once-in-a-lifetime (maybe twice) experience.

Go – get into the umbra. Experience totality. Marvel at the grand beauty of these unique celestial mechanics.