2024 Solar Eclipse

2024 Solar Eclipse

Logo for 2024 Eclipse

The Ohio Department of Education 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. 

The State of Ohio  Eclipse Task Force

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

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

Lessons on the Eclipse - Under Construction

Frequently Asked Questions
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.    

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 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. Blue counties touch the center line. White counties do not contain any areas that will experience totality.

Image of eclipse path

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 second or two. 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?

Field trip! This is the best way to make sure all your students get this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Eclipse viewers who are outside the totality path will only be able to see a partial eclipse. However, all locations in Ohio are within a short drive of a location within the totality path.  

For those who do not wish to travel but wish to experience the event, NASA provides livestreaming of eclipse events. Keep in mind that the livestream will not be the same as being there. Students will have the best educational opportunity if they are taken to an area of totality. You might investigate partnering with a district hosting an event in the totality zone or check eclipse.ohio.gov for the location of a public event. 

If there is no school-sponsored trip, be sure parents are informed about the eclipse, so they have the chance to plan an educational family trip, if desired.

Last Modified: 5/23/2023 9:27:17 AM

Contact Information

Lydia Hunter
Science Program Specialist