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Rye Brook Kindergartners Reach For The Stars

Steve “The Dirtmeister” Tomecek lets Rye Brook kindergartners Maya Vinokoor and Bailey Agosta touch and feel a meteorite as part of his Starlab Portable Planetarium workshop.
Steve “The Dirtmeister” Tomecek lets Rye Brook kindergartners Maya Vinokoor and Bailey Agosta touch and feel a meteorite as part of his Starlab Portable Planetarium workshop. Photo Credit: Courtesy of Kathrin Blanch
Veronica Babiuk, Savannah Fisher, Robert Luceno and Sophia Lombardi from Brenda Johnson’s kindergarten class at Ridge Street School, sit inside the Starlab Portable Planetarium.
Veronica Babiuk, Savannah Fisher, Robert Luceno and Sophia Lombardi from Brenda Johnson’s kindergarten class at Ridge Street School, sit inside the Starlab Portable Planetarium. Photo Credit: Courtesy of Kathrin Blanch

RYE BROOK, N.Y. -- Kindergartners at Bruno M. Ponterio Ridge Street School in Rye Brook became young astronomers while attending a workshop taught by Steve "The Dirtmeister" Tomecek of Starlab Portable Planetarium.

Tomecek gave the kids a lesson on constellations, the solar system and the phases of the moon. The students learned how to find the three stars that make up Orion's Belt, the four stars shaped in a square that constitute the Great Square of Pegasus and the Big Dipper. Each student received a star map so they could search the night sky on their own.

Tomecek has served as associate director for the Science Museum of Long Island and as the science program supervisor for the New York Hall of Science. He has written numerous books for the National Geographic Society and Scholastic.

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