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Shenzhen Astronomical Observatory held a symposium for the GOS students.

Shenzhen Astronomical Observatory held a symposium for the GOS students.

Article/Andrew Barrett Chinn

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Star Trails


The stars just got a little brighter for Year 5 as Dr. Zheng from the Shenzhen Astronomical Observatory held a symposium for the GOS students.

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Dr.Jianchuan Zheng


Dr.Jianchuan Zheng graduated from the Department of Astronomy, Beijing Normal University, Dr.Zheng focuses on studying the activities on the Sun. He has been working as a researcher at Shenzhen Astronomical Observatory since 2017.  Dr.Zheng's work covers observing and studying the activities on the Sun, spaceweather forecast, the correlation between the Earth and the Sun, and education in astronomy. He has published several papers on international astrophysical journals, such as ApJ, RAA and JGR. Dr.Zheng also writes articles for popular science magazines, such as “Knowledge is Power”, “Fans of Astronomy”. He has published two translated books, “The Ultimate Interplanetary Travel Guide” and “Moon: An Illustrated History”. Dr.Zheng has been a guest speaker for many schools and libraries. 

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On Wednesday October 11th 2023, GOS invited Dr.Zheng to speak to our students. The purpose of this talk was to allow our students to speak with an expert in the field of astronomy which is main topic of our Stargazers unit it. Every year the first teaching unit for Year 5 is Stargazers, but this year has been made more special by Dr.Zheng’s first visit to our school. Dr.Zheng was able to speak on a variety of topics in astronomy that had been covered previously (ex. lunar phases and planetary makeup.) This reinforced the students’ knowledge by giving them someone new (and very knowledgeable) to discuss with what they already knew and what they want to know. He was also able to give a brief introduction to his specialty (studying the sun and sunspots) which we hope inspires to reach higher and deeper with their own studies. In general, Dr.Zheng was an excellent orator who effectively engaged the students with his presentation.

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Overall, the Year 5 teachers were overjoyed with etiquette and engagement displayed by their Year 5 students. We were also able to gather information that will help us to better teach the Stargazers unit in the future. By far the largest amount of questions Dr. Zheng had to answer were about black holes so maybe next year there will more details provided on these interesting space phenomena.

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We are very grateful for Dr. Zheng's visit, maybe Dr. Zheng’s visit may have inspired the next great astronomer who finally figures out what’s at the bottom of a black hole.