Hi! My name is Shawn. I grew up in rural Maryland under the night sky and lots of stars. My earliest sky watching memories were from watching meteor showers and using my $10 telescope to look at the moon, over and over again. When I was young I read the Childcraft “How and Why Library” a lot, particularly the “World and Space” volume. The idea of infinite space would keep me up at night and brought on my first “I can’t sleep” nights as a teenager. I was fascinated at the origins of the Moon, and the rings of Saturn, and the Giant Red Spot on Jupiter. My report on Haley’s Comet from the third grade is still etched vividly in my mind. I wanted to learn about everything!
As an adult, I bought my first real telescope when I was 27. The Orion Apex 102mm Maksutov-Cassegrain Telescope cost me about $300 and launched me into Amateur Astronomy. I was living in Chicago with my new wife and I would spend hours on our back porch staring up at the Moon, the satellites of Jupiter, and rings of Saturn. I would sometimes sketch what I saw, remembering Galileo and Ptolemy, and Brahe. Often running in to grab my wife, Giselle, and making her don a heavy jacket and boots to come out and look at Orion’s Nebula or how the satellites of Jupiter may have moved in the past hour. I was like that kid with his Childcraft encyclopedias all over again.
Now I am a Montessori teacher back in Maryland with a love for astronomy and teaching. I love teaching all areas of science, but have a special place in my heart for Astronomy. I found myself sending emails to the parents of my students about some space occurrence coming up, like an eclipse or a solar transit. Those emails lead me to this blog. I wanted a way to take my passion to the next level and give students and parents a way to get more information that I don’t have time for in class. I hope you enjoy and please feel free to offer any feedback you may have. I hope to evolve this blog into something that is easy to use for everyone.