Astronomy for All Abilities

Can you believe it's only two and a half months since we launched our online shop?! But actually, we had a secret soft launch about a month before that, to coincide with the first American Astronomical Society (AAS) meeting be held only online. AAS meetings were the venue for our blog launch in 2014, our first research posters, and our first BOOTHtique, so it was only fitting to take our next step in tandem with our professional society.

As sponsors of the 236th AAS meeting we provided a prize for a scavenger hunt, where attendees endeavored to find all the Plush Planet Pals hidden in the virtual venue were entered in a drawing to win the full set.

We weren't involved with selecting the winner, but we were thrilled to learn who it was when she got in touch after she received her prizes!

Noreen Grice holds several Celestial Buddies plush planet pals in front of a virtual forest background

Noreen Grice is the founder of You Can Do Astronomy LLC, an accessibility design and consulting company with a focus on making astronomy and space science accessible to people through universal design. Noreen told us she is also an advocate for equity, inclusion, diversity, and accessibility. After working in the planetarium field for 32 years, her company provides educational consulting for learners with different abilities, especially people who are blind or visually impaired.

In the spirit of universal accessibility, here are some additional resources for making astronomy appreciation and research possible for every ability:

Tactile Universe from the University of Portsmouth

3D Printed Universe and X-Ray Universe from Chandra

Wanda Diaz Merced's TED Talk: How.a Blind Astronomer Found a Way to Hear the Stars

WYPR Podcast on Space Sonification

Working Group on Accessibility and Disability (WGAD) of the AAS

Noreen Grice holds the Sun plush toy in front of some of the other planets

Shine on!
--Emily

 

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