2024 Solar Eclipse
2024 Solar Eclipse
Table of Contents
Statewide Eclipse Preparation
Ohio Academy of Science Video Contest
Lesson Supports for the Eclipse
Frequently Asked Questions
Guidance for Solar Eclipse Day
Resources for Administrators and Educators
For the first time since 1806 Ohio will be the site of a total solar eclipse. While many portions of the state will have the opportunity to experience totality, even those outside the path of totality will see 95% or more of the sun eclipsed. Provisions for safe viewing of this once in a lifetime eclipse event are important at every Ohio location.
The Ohio Department of Education and Workforce has created this page as a resource for educators and school administrators on logistics and curricular approaches to educating students and the community about the eclipse, which will be visible in Ohio on April 8, 2024.
This page is a living document and will be updated periodically with resources and information as they become available.
In celebration of the Total Solar Eclipse coming on April 8, 2024, the Ohio Academy of Science is partnering to raise awareness and educate students on solar eclipses.
Students have an opportunity to win an eclipse viewing pack by completing a short form and uploading an original video with an eclipse focus. Videos must be scientifically accurate, no longer than 2 minutes in duration and grade appropriate for the student creating the video.
For more details or to register, visit the Ohio Academy of Science
Preparing for the 2024 Eclipse with Dennis Schatz
Tuesday February 27, 2024, 4:15 p.m.
Join Dennis Schatz, Former President of the National Science Teaching Association,
co-developer of the NSTA Solar Eclipse resource webpage and co-author of NSTA Press books, Solar Science and When the Sun Goes Dark, key resources for educators during solar eclipses. Dennis will share things that educators should know leading up to the April 8, 2024 Total Solar Eclipse and lesson plans to get students engaged and excited to learn about and experience the eclipse.
Previous Webinar Recordings
Viewing Eclipses with Dr. Gordon Telepun
Dr. Gordon Telepun, a medical surgeon, has become an expert in viewing and photographing total solar eclipses. In this recording with the Science Team, he shares timeline-based tips as to what you can expect, what you need to be ready and how to get the most out of the total solar eclipse that will occur April 8. 2024.
Ohio will experience a once-in-a-lifetime total solar eclipse April 8, 2024. Solar eclipses occur when the path of the moon crosses directly in front of the sun. Many parts of the state will be in total darkness for a few minutes during the midafternoon. The remainder of the state will see the sun at least 95% blocked by the moon. The last time any location in Ohio had this type of eclipse was in 1806, making this a novel experience for most Ohioans. Being in the path of this eclipse provides a unique learning opportunity for students.
The entire eclipse process takes place over several hours on the afternoon of Monday, April 8, with a short totality in the middle of the event. Partial phases of any eclipse can only be safely viewed with specialized eye protection. For more general information about the eclipse visit Ohio’s statewide eclipse webpage.
There are several factors that districts and schools should consider when finalizing plans for April 8, 2024. The event is expected to draw large numbers of tourists to Ohio, particularly at or near the centerline of totality. The event could impact schools as the timing of the eclipse will occur during most end-of-day dismissal windows. In addition, traffic is expected to be extremely heavy Monday and extending into Tuesday, and communication capabilities such as cell service and internet bandwidth could be diminished or unavailable in places.
To help districts and schools prepare, the Department has developed a list of questions that should be considered when planning for the eclipse.
Questions to Consider:
- How do we make sure our students and staff are as safe as possible?
- Have we consulted with local emergency management for information and advice?
- Should we hold school April 8, 2024?
- Should we cancel after-school events such as athletics, board meetings and extracurriculars?
- Have we considered how to handle unusual situations caused by the influx of tourists, such the following:
- Viewers choosing to use school property as a viewing site
- Traffic limiting access to schools by parents or emergency vehicles
- Safety of students during the dismissal transition
- How and what will we communicate to parents?
- Prior to the eclipse
- Day of the eclipse (if open or hosting an event)
- Transportation changes or delays
- How do we best ensure our students and staff can participate in this once in a lifetime event?
- How will we take advantage of this phenomenon as a locally relevant learning opportunity for students?
- How do we incorporate history, geography, English language arts, science, fine arts, math and other content areas? For example, fourth grade mathematics subtraction, how many years has it been since Ohio had a total solar eclipse?
- What logistics do we need to consider?
- Will we provide protective eyewear to students and staff?
- What safety plans will be in place during the event? How will we communicate this to staff/students/community?
The State of Ohio Eclipse Task Force, consisting of numerous state and partner agencies, is preparing for various aspects of the 2024 solar eclipse. The event is expected to draw millions of tourists from throughout the country and the world. Ohio plans to be well-equipped to make the experience educational, enjoyable and safe for both residents and visitors. The task force has created a website with practical and logistical information for making the most of this amazing once-in-a lifetime-event in communities across Ohio. For more information on the event, including safe viewing, lodging, event locations, speakers, and Ohio sites of interest, visit: eclipse.ohio.gov
Viewing the Eclipse Safely
Viewers in every location in Ohio will need to ensure the have proper eye protwction when viewing the eclipse. Looking directly at the sun, even during partial phases of an eclipse, can damage the eyes.
NEVER LOOK DIRECTLY AT THE SUN without proper eyewear.
There are many devices used to view eclipses safely. The most familiar are solar eclipse glasses. Other indirect viewing and projection devices are quite popular as well. It is important to check that any viewing device meets safety standards. The American Astronomical Society has information on How to View a Solar Eclipse Safely. NASA also offers a page on Eye Safety During a Total Solar Eclipse.
This video shows a factory tour and interview with the owner of American Paper Optics, one manufacturer of eclipse glasses. The factory tour allows students to see how eclipse glasses are designed and produced.
The resources listed below are general resources applicable to any school setting.
- The Environmental Education Council of Ohio has curated a newsletter focused on the 2024 Total Solar Eclipse. This newsletter has valuable background information for educators, activities to stimulate student and public engagement with the eclipse and other valuable resources.
- This recording was created for school administrators and details how unique and transformative viewing the eclipse can be as an educational experience.
- The American Astronomical Society (AAS) has a list of vendors selling approved eclipse viewing devices. When using any vendor, check that the product meets the requirements of the ISO 12312-2 international standard. There may be vendors falsely advertising compliance with this code. See advice from AAS for determining safety.
The links below are collections of lessons and activities organized by most appropriate grade band
State Library of Ohio Recommended Reading Lists for Birth through Adult
What is a solar eclipse?
A solar eclipse occurs when the moon’s path crosses in front of the sun blocking all or some of the sunlight to a portion of Earth’s surface. Although the moon is much smaller than the sun, it is also much further away, making it able to completely cover the view of the sun at certain times. Each total solar eclipse can only be experienced on a narrow swath of Earth’s surface. A larger area of the surface will experience varying degrees of partial eclipsing.
Is a total solar eclipse that much better than a partial eclipse?
The difference between a partial eclipse and a total eclipse is literally night and day. Most of us have experienced partial eclipses, and while interesting, they do not have the awe-inspiring effects of total eclipses. It is well worth the effort to travel to an area of totality from anywhere in Ohio, as all areas are within a short drive of the “real deal.” The last totality in Ohio occurred in1806, so unless someone has traveled, they have never seen anything quite like what is coming our way.
When is the Annular Eclipse?
On Saturday, October 14, 2023, there will be an annular eclipse in the southwestern United States. Ohio will experience a partial eclipse on this date. Two types of solar eclipses within one school year provide a perfect set up for students to investigate the differences between partial, annual and total eclipses. The sun will only be 30-40% eclipsed in Ohio but this provides an opportunity to contrast the partial eclipse during the fall with the total eclipse in spring. Students could make qualitative observations, take photos, journal or interview other observers and take temperature readings. They could then compare these with their experiences at the April 8, 2024, total eclipse.
The National Science Teaching Association (NSTA) provides an eclipse guide for educators which offers a complete reference for both the 2023 annular and the 2024 total solar eclipse events.
Where can I experience totality in Ohio during the April 8, 2024, eclipse?
Most of the western and northern portions of the state will achieve totality. The map below shows in blue the area of Ohio which will experience a total eclipse. Portions of the state in yellow will have a partial eclipse. The closer to the centerline the longer totality will last. Areas near the blue center line are expected to be the most affected by tourists. The remainder of the state will experience a partial solar eclipse. Between the top and bottom lines is the totality zone. Along the center line is the longest duration for totality.
Where do I go to watch the eclipse?
Eclipse.ohio.gov has interactive maps showing locations and events for viewing the eclipse. If your school is in the totality zone, you can plan an eclipse viewing event there.
For those who prefer an informal viewing experience, any open area is good. Plan to get there early and take your time leaving, as traffic is expected to be extremely heavy throughout the state. This is particularly true in totality areas and on major access highways into and out of the state. Traffic could remain heavy into Tuesday.
How long will the eclipse last?
The entire event takes several hours, but the period of totality is relatively short, under 5 minutes. The further you are from the center line, the shorter the totality time. At the center line, it may be 4 or more minutes, but at the edge lines, totality will last just a few seconds. Keep this in mind as you plan your viewing site.
Many events plan to include entertainment and other activities before, during and after the eclipse. Come early and stay late to avoid the worst traffic. The statewide eclipse website contains an interactive map of things to do before and after.
Besides getting dark, what can I expect to experience?
In areas of totality, it will seem like nighttime has arrived midafternoon. It will get dark and the temperature will drop. Animals may be seen exhibiting nighttime behaviors. For example, bats and other nocturnal animals may come out, and diurnal animals may start to bed down for the night. You are encouraged to have students research these phenomena prior to the eclipse and to be on the lookout for them as you participate on eclipse day.
What can I do with my students to teach about the eclipse?
There are many lessons and activities that can be completed with students to help them understand eclipses. See Eclipse Lessons above to find resources to use at various grade levels. Keep watching for updates, as we will be adding material throughout the next several months.
A speaker list will be posted on eclipse.ohio.gov prior to the 2023-2024 school year. You might also check with a local college, university or amateur astronomy club. Keep in mind that there will be high demand for speakers, especially close to the event.
Where can I purchase eclipse glasses?
The American Astronomical Society has curated a list of Reputable Vendors of Solar Filters and Glasses. Make sure to check the specifications of any viewing device prior to use. There have previously been instances reported of disreputable vendors selling non-compliant eclipse glasses to schools and individuals.
What if my school is not in the path of totality?
Eclipse viewers who are outside of the totality path will still be able to experience a significant partial eclipse. However, all locations in Ohio are within a short drive of a location within the totality path. Be sure parents are informed about the eclipse, so they have the chance to plan an educational family trip, if desired.
For those outside of the path of totality, NASA provides livestreaming of eclipse events. Keep in mind that the livestream will not be the same as being there. Contact Lydia Hunter, Science Program Specialist for more information.
Last Modified: 12/1/2023 9:15:24 AM