Week 8: Learning more about the universe

In class this week we had the pleasure of Speaking to the astrophysicist Santiago again, and learn more about the Universe! The class led by Santiago went to South Campus, where we first visited the meteorite gallery. It was amazing to be able to see and touch meteorites in person, and feel them and hear the metal clink noise some of them make. It was really amazing to think about honestly, that these things in front of me had lived so long, and traveled from somewhere far off in space. They are like fossils of different lives and centuries in our universe. I also kept thinking about how we were basically made of the same matter, and the dust that eventually created me too had fallen from space and broken off as fragments of other pieces of space matter like dead stars. Santiago also took us up many, many flights of stairs up to the roof where we were able to see a lot of cool things. We saw different domes housing microscopes large and small, and even a fish tank and mini fridge. Before heading back down we also went inside the planetarium where we got to sit in darkness and see hand-plotted, projected images of the stars, as well as Victoria's piece Alien Stardust.  I loved hearing Santiago speak more about the universe during this.

Matthew and I were also able to arrange a time with Santiago to ask him more questions about the universe as we were wrapping up the writing of our book. During the next class, we had this week Matthew and I, along with Ryan and Sue who we dragged along for the journey, went to the South campus and met with Santiago. We asked him many things. We asked what questions children ask him the most, we asked about his personal stories and memories, and views of the world. We asked him if the universe is kind! Which he replied, Yes. Ryan and sue also asked him questions. Like if free will was real. Which became a very long conversation. After we roamed around campus with a powerful magnet in search of fallen stardust. Which Ryan and Sue accidentally ripped our bag, but we still managed to pick up some unknown matter and had lots of fun. Also, after class, Mat was able to detach the magnet that Charles and his group had gotten stuck to the Richard Serra!