With the aim of taking the young minds through a world of practical knowledge and interactive lessons, the Science and Technology Museum in the city has lined up a number of new attractions in the form of sky-watching sessions and guided tour of innovative galleries through a School Adoption Programme.

The museum will soon be equipped with a 14 inch CG Pro telescope, considered one among the largest telescopes in the State. The CG Pro 1,400 mode telescope with German Equatorial Mount (a ‘T'-shaped mount on which the telescope is placed) is incorporated with Global Positioning System (GPS) with auto-tracking facilities. Thus unlike the older versions, the telescope is capable of auto-tracking the stars. Moon craters, rings of Saturn, Uranus, Neptune and Pluto can be tracked with greater clarity and efficiency with the telescope.

Unlike those strict-scheduled visits during the school tours, when there is just enough time to get a peek into the planetarium, batches of 30 students each are given a one-day guided tour in the museum as part of the School Adoption Programme. The tour will start in the morning with an orientation class and group discussion, followed by a visit to the galleries, the centre for scientific toys, planetarium, and 3D theatre shows.

Nine galleries on various disciplines of science and technology, such as electrical and electronics gallery, mathematical gallery, automobile galleries and so on, are on display.

The museum can accommodate up to 150 students a day.

The latest addition to the gallery section will be a popular-science gallery and an astronomical gallery. The former has moving models displaying 25 basic principles in science, which is expected to be opened to public by November. The later has models describing the pre-telescopic era, and models of craters and the early sky. The work on the gallery is expected to be completed within three months.

According to the Director-in-Charge of the Museum, G. Arul Jerald Prakash, there is immense source of knowledge that the children can tap from these galleries, but often they spend very little time by choosing only a planetarium show.

Through the School Adoption Programme, the museum encourages the children to spend enough time at the galleries. This will be possible only with support from the various schools which should dedicate time and effort to bring the children to the museum for such sessions.

“Many students find it difficult to understand the principles in physics. By observing the demo sessions of these models, they can more easily remember the concepts behind it. They should think beyond the definition in books and start experimenting,” said Mr. Prakash.