Professor Eva Ramirez
Connect the Dots [Astronomy 1-3]
Sun Jun 16, 2019 15:10

Part of the challenge of teaching astronomy was, of course, that her classes were held in the evening. Students were already tired from a full day of learning, and often they came to her class directly from dinner, so they were full of good food and ready to trudge back on up to their dorms, not sit in a field looking through telescopes for another period. The other challenge of today’s lesson was that midterm had barely just ended—this was Eva’s first class of the semester—so students had not yet readjusted to the rhythm of learning.

It was a good thing Eva Ramirez liked a challenge.

Once the students had taken their seats on the wooden benches, Eva extinguished her wand to signify the beginning of the lesson. The students did not need light to listen, after all, and this gave their eyes time to adjust to the darkness, so that they would be able to see the stars. It was a moonless night, perfect for today’s lesson plan.

“Welcome back. Today we will practice a spell to project the patterns of constellations onto the night sky. Observe.” Eva twirled her wand toward the sky and said in a clear voice, “Revelare lineae.” Thin bright lines formed between the constellations above. The benefit of this spell was that no matter where one was seated, the lines matched up to the correct stars—unlike an actual projector, for which the viewing angle mattered. When the students cast this spell, the effect would be more limited, the lines appearing only to the caster and those seated nearest to them.

“I have outlined established constellations for the purpose of this demonstration, but today don’t worry about whether a constellation exists or not.” Eva dismissed the spell with a finite, and the lines faded from view. “If you are familiar with any of the constellations, you may have noticed that it takes some imagination to interpret the symbol from the shape of the lines. The goal today is simply to practice the spell and exercise your creativity by inventing your own constellations.

“With a partner, choose a spot to lie down and look upwards. You may borrow a blanket if you wish.” Eva indicated a basket full of folded picnic blankets Kizzy, the head house elf, had insisted on providing. January evenings were chilly even within the school’s charmed outdoor environment, and the ground was cold. “Draw lines between whichever stars you want, as though you’re playing connect the dots. Use the spell to show your partner where you’re drawing.”

With a wave of her wand, unlabeled star charts distributed themselves to the students. “When you have decided on the pattern, record your constellation. Make sure to name them! And for extra credit, come up with a story or legend about your constellation.” Personally Eva was most excited to read these. Kids could be so creative.

[OOC: You know the drill! Remember that each post must be at least 200 words and should be written in past tense. Bonus points are awarded to interesting and/or fun posts. Tag Eva if you need her!]

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