Adler Planetarium and Astronomy Museum

Adler Planetarium Display

Credit City of Chicago

During your school trip to Chicago, your class should spend some time at the Adler Planetarium. The team can visit the museum, shop, and dine. The location was America’s first planetarium. Participants will enjoy interactive exhibitions, programs and events, and entertaining sky shows.

There are several engaging exhibitions for your class to explore. You will find galleries such as the Clark Family Welcome Gallery, the Historic Atwood Sphere, Our Solar System, Planet Explorers, and Telescope: Through the Looking Glass. The Historic Atwood Sphere is Chicago’s oldest planetarium. The team can take a live guided tour where you will identify stars and the constellations they form. The Telescope: Through the Looking Glass exhibition is one where your class will have the opportunity to look at a variety of telescopes and learn how people observed the sky prior to the invention. You will see telescopes such as the Italian trumpet-shaped telescope from the 1630s, a Grand Orrery handcrafted planetarium from the 18thcentury, a colossal 22-foot-long antique telescope from 1675, and the modern Dearborn Telescope. The team can experiment with lenses and learn how their curvatures bend light in different ways.

Participants can also enjoy a live sky show during the visit to the Adler Planetarium. The class can choose from shows such as Destination Solar System, Cosmic Wonder, Undiscovered Worlds, and Earth Moon and Sun. During the Destination Solar System show, participants will take a tour of the solar system and explore the hottest, coldest, and most spectacular sights. The Undiscovered Worlds live presentation tells the story of the search for new planets and also examines the possibility of finding life beyond earth.