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History of Trigonometry - Part 2

Stage: 3, 4 and 5
Article by Leo Rogers

Published January 2010,February 2011.

Pedagogical Notes

  1. When do children look at the stars? In our urban society, few people look up to contemplate the heavens, and there is so much light pollution that it is often difficult to see anything (the weather doesn't help either!). If we can't see the sky, we are denied some fundamental wonders to experience, and even in the countryside it is getting more difficult to see the events 'especially near the horizon ' where the events that were the basis of the calendar, navigation, and time reckoning occurred. The study of astronomy became an essential part of human activity, and led to significant developments in a wide variety of mathematical knowledge. The references below could encourage you to start something serious!

  2. Some References
Aaboe, A. (2001) Episodes from the Early History of Astronomy. New York. Springer. The first chapter of this book has the title: "What every young person ought to know about naked eye astronomy. and is an excellent introduction to the simple techniques and the knowledge that is available just by looking intelligently at the sky.

There are many sites labelled 'astronomy for kids'. A couple of the better ones are:

Kids Astronomy:

This is the website of the Astronomy Magazine section for young people (and adults!)

Something a bit more technical here: This site is Astronomy without a Telescope and is much more detaile:

This is the homepage for the above site. All you might want to know!"