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Show Information

For reservations or more information, call the Planetarium at (908) 231-8805
Monday-Friday from 8:30am to 4:00pm, or e-mail us at: planet@raritanval.edu
All shows run approximately 45 minutes.
Admission Fee:

$7 per person for one show.
$12 per person for two shows.
One adult is free with every ten students. Minimum group size: 15 students.
There is a $105 minimum charge for any group seeing one program, and $180 for any group seeing two programs.
That price covers 15 people. If you bring more, the rates above apply. 

Beginning July 1, 2014, admission will be $7 per person for one show and $13 per person for two shows on the same day.  The minimum charges for a private show will be $105 for one program and $195 for two shows on the same day.

Program Recommended Grade Levels
Rockin' Rocket Ride PreK K 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9-12
Sky Lights PreK K 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9-12
Space Shapes & Tycho to the Moon PreK K 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9-12
Magic Tree House: Space Mission PreK K 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9-12
The Little Star that Could PreK K 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9-12
Secret of the Cardboard Rocket PreK K 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9-12
  NEW! Perfect Little Planet PreK K 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9-12
Follow the Drinking Gourd PreK K 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9-12
Earth, Moon, and Sun (and Coyote) PreK K 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9-12
The Problem with Pluto PreK K 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9-12
Solar System Odyssey PreK K 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9-12
Natural Selection PreK K 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9-12
Black Holes PreK K 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9-12
Two Small Pieces of Glass PreK K 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9-12
Astronomyths PreK K 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9-12
Moons of the Solar System PreK K 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9-12
Infinity Express & How Big is the Universe PreK K 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9-12
The Planets PreK K 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9-12
SETI PreK K 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9-12
Live Seasonal Sky Show PreK K 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9-12
Laser Kids PreK K 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9-12
Rock Laser Concerts PreK K 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9-12
Winter Wonder Lights laser concert PreK K 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9-12

Preschool - Kindergarten

Rockin' Rocket Ride

Designed for Preschool - Kindergarten 
Put on your space suit and blast-off into outer space to visit the Moon, Sun and planets. A lively experience for young people with selected music from "Journey Into Space" by Jane Murphy. 
Related NJ Core Curriculum Content Standards: Science: 5.1.PA, 5.1.PB, 5.1.PC, 5.4.2A, 5.4.4A, 5.4.6A

Sky Lights Laser and Video Concert

Recommended for PreK and K.
Our youngest audience members can sing along with songs by mr. RAY (Family RideKalien the Alien) and Jane Murphy (Moonrock RockThe Planet Song). Some songs are illustrated with lasers and other songs feature video images. 
Related NJ Core Curriculum Content Standards: 5.1.PC, 5.4.2A, 5.4.4A, 5.4.6A

Space Shapes & Tycho to the Moon

Designed for Grades K – 1
We begin by exploring shapes: are the Moon and its orbit "round" like a ball or a pancake? Play connect-the-dots with the stars to find triangles and squares and constellations. Fly around the solar system to learn about the planets. Then meet Tycho, a dog who doesn’t just howl at the Moon, but wants to go there. Blast off on an amazing ride. Learn about night and day, space travel, the phases of the Moon, and features of the lunar surface. Take a close up look at the Sun, watch the effects of gravity, see the Earth from space, and watch meteors shoot across the sky. 
Related NJ Core Curriculum Content Standards: 5.1.PC, 5.4.2A, 5.4.4A, 5.4.6A



Grades 1-3

New! Magic Tree House: Space Mission

Designed for Grades K – 4
What would you do if you found a note with lots of question on it? "How many stars in the starry night sky? If we flew to the Sun, how long would we fly? Will we travel to planets and will it be soon? Will we ever be able to live on the Moon? How does it feel to journey through space? Why is our Earth so special a place?" From the authors of the best selling novel series, join Jack and Annie as they discover the secrets of the Sun, Moon, planets, space travel, and more. Who can help them answer the mysterious "M's" questions? Morehead Planetarium, creators of "Magic Tree House: Space Mission," has created an educator's guide.

The Little Star That Could

Designed for grades 1 - 3
Travel with an average yellow star on his quest to get a “name” and a planet to call his own. A “cool” red star, a “hot” blue star, a dying star, double stars, and the Milky Way Galaxy teach the Little Star some important things about being a star. Imagine Little Star’s surprise when he discovers planets already going around him! This show is a great introduction to the different kinds of stars in space as well as the planets in our solar system. After the story, we’ll discover some of the stars and constellations we can see in tonight’s sky.
Related NJ Core Curriculum Content Standards: 5.1.PC, 5.4.2A, 5.4.4A, 5.4.6A, 5.4.12A

The Secret of the Cardboard Rocket

Designed for grades 1 - 3
Students travel with two adventurous youngsters in their cardboard rocket as they explore the Sun and the planets of the solar system. This show is designed to encourage the use of libraries, enhance language skills and develop individual imagination. 
Related NJ Core Curriculum Content Standards: 5.1.PC, 5.4.2A, 5.4.4A, 5.4.6A

 NEW! Perfect Little Planet

Designed for Grades 1-4
A family from another star system is seekind the perfect vacation spot.  Will they find a nice, quiet spot in our busy solar system?  Fly over the surface of Pluto, our best-known Dwarf Planet.  Dive over the ice cliffs of Miranda, one of Saturn's moons.  Avoid the lightning storms on Jupiter!  Which destination would you choose?  Join us for the most up-to-date look at our solar system.  See a preview of the show on YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4C3QO3Y6_H8
Related NJ Core Curruiculum Content Standards: 5.1.PC, 5.4.2A, 5.4.4A, 5.4.6A

 Follow the Drinking Gourd

Designed for grades 2 - 4 
Learn to find the Big Dipper and several other constellations in our night sky. Then, we’ll go back in time as a slave trying to escape oppression. Follow the Big Dipper through a frightful but rewarding voyage out of slavery. Run through the rivers, forests, fields and mountains while trying to find a helping hand to freedom. Sing along with the slaves who used the song of the Drinking Gourd to travel north on foot from Alabama to Canada. Based on Jeanette Winters’ book by the same title, this show describes the astronomy behind the slave song “Follow the Drinking Gourd.” 
Related NJ Core Curriculum Content Standards: Science: 5.1.PC, 5.4.2A, 5.4.4A, 5.4.6A, 5.4.8A, Social Studies: 6.1.4A, 6.1.4C, 6.1.4D


Grades 3-5

Earth, Moon, and Sun (and Coyote)

Designed for grades 2 - 5
Coyote has a razor-sharp wit, but he’s a little confused about what he sees in the sky. Join this amusing character (adapted from Native American oral traditions) in a fast-paced and fun, full-dome show that tells Native American stories, explores lunar phases, eclipses, and other puzzles. Engaging and immersive, “Earth, Moon & Sun” also examines how humans learn through space exploration. This program is paired with a brief tour of the current night sky. Morehead Planetarium, creators of "Earth, Moon, and Sun," has created an educator's guide.
Related NJ Core Curriculum Content Standards: Science: 5.1.PC, 5.4.2A, 5.4.4A, 5.4.6A, 5.4.8A, Social Studies: 6.1.4D

The Problem with Pluto

Designed for Grades 3 – 6
Follow Lucy on her trip through the solar system as she gathers data on Pluto’s status as a planet. Discover current information about the planets and investigate where Pluto belongs in the overall structure of the solar system. This program is paired with a brief tour of the current night sky.
Related NJ Core Curriculum Content Standards: 5.1.PC, 5.4.4A, 5.4.6A, 5.4.8A5.4.12A


Grades 5-12

New! Solar System Odyssey

Designed for Grades 4-12
Go on a futuristic journey through our Solar System. With Earth's resources being rapidly depleted, a tycoon sends our hero, Jack Larson, on a mission to discover a new home to colonize. This character-driven show is perfect for middle school students! Morehead Planetarium, creators of "Solar System Odyssey," has created a trailer and curriculum guide for the show.

New! Natural Selection

Designed for Grades 5-12
Join the young Charles Darwin on an adventurous voyage of exploration circumnavigating the world with the HMS Beagle. In Victorian times, many physical phenomena were already discovered and described by natural laws, but life's most eloquent mechanism was still unknown. How could new species arise to replace those lost in extinction? It was time for someone to stand up and come forth with a naturalist explanation of this mystery of mysteries. Witness the thrill of scientific discovery by seeing the world through Darwin's eyes, make observations of the most beautiful natural scenery, and let the pieces of the scientific puzzle slowly but surely fall into place. Allow Darwin himself to reveal this simple and most beautiful mechanism that explains the evolution of all life on Earth: natural selection, the single most wonderful idea anyone has ever had.

New! Black Holes

Designed for Grades 5-12
Black Holes takes you on a journey through one of the most mystifying, awe-inspiring phenomena in the universe: a black hole. Where do they come from? Where do they go? How do we find them? Is there one on Earth's horizon? Explore the science and mystery of Black Holes.

Moons of the Solar System

Designed for grades 5 - 12
The year 2009 celebrated 400 years since Galileo first turned his telescope up to the sky and turned the scientific and religious worlds upside down. We will observe our Moon changing in the sky, recreate Galileo's observations of Jupiter, when he discovered four moons circling the giant planet, and fly by some of those moons.
A live interactive presentation in four stages
1. Observing the Moon from Earth
2. Modeling Moon Phases with a Moon Ball
3. Tracking Jupiter’s moons as seen from Earth. (Recreates Galileo’s observations)
4. Tour of moons around Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn as time allows. This portion is accurately displayed as if the audience is in a spaceship orbiting the planet. The show ends with a quick trip back to Earth.
Related NJ Core Curriculum Content Standards: Science: 5.1.PC, 5.1.4A, 5.1.4B, 5.1.4C, 5.4.4A, Social Studies: 6.2.12D

Two Small Pieces of Glass

Designed for grades 5 - 12
"Two Small Pieces of Glass" traces the history of the telescope from Galileo’s modifications to a child’s spyglass—using two small pieces of glass—to the launch of NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope and the future of astronomy. It explores the wonder and discovery made by astronomers through out the last 400 years. "Two Small Pieces of Glass" runs about 30 minutes, and is paired with an introduction to the stars & constellations we can see in tonight's sky.
Related NJ Core Curriculum Content Standards: 5.4.12A

Astronomyths

Designed for grades 5 - 12
The Autumn Skies are full of myth and science. Learn some of the Greek mythology associated with the constellations, then look beyond the stories to discover the deep sky objects hidden within: binary star systems, star clusters, and giant galaxies."Astronomyths" runs about 30 minutes, and is paired with an introduction to the stars & constellations we can see in tonight's sky.
Related NJ Core Curriculum Content Standards: 5.4.12A

Infinity Express & How Big is the Universe

Designed for grades 6 - 12
A remarkable blend of science, art, and entertainment, "Infinity Express" takes the audience on an exciting journey of discovery, from the search for solar systems to the mapping of the Universe. Dramatically communicating the latest breakthroughs in our quest to understand the Cosmos, this shows features our new planetarium technology, all-dome video! "Infinity Express" runs 25 minutes, and is paired with "How Big is the Universe."
A live interactive presentation based on the film “Powers of Ten”, this program surveys distances and sizes of things in the Universe. How do astronomers know the distances to objects in space? The program starts with ordinary objects and travels out to the Moon, Sun, nearby stars, through the Milky Way galaxy to the nearby galaxies. Parallax, radar and comparing brightness of objects measure distances.
Related NJ Core Curriculum Content Standards: 5.1.PC, 5.4.4A, 5.4.6A, 5.4.12A

The Planets

Designed for grades 6 – 12
Question and answers test students’ knowledge of the planets in our solar system. The audience find themselves transported from planet to planet, immersed in spectacularly different environments. Great fun, the show also has enough facts and concepts to provide real educational value. This program also includes a live tour of the current night sky and/or a trip out of our solar system to see where planets have been discovered around other stars.
Related NJ Core Curriculum Content Standards: 5.1.PC, 5.4.4A, 5.4.6A, 5.4.8A, 5.4.2G

S.E.T.I. – Grades 6 – 12

The prospect that we may not be alone in the universe is taken as a fact by the movies, writers, and a great many scientists. As yet, we have no hard evidence of another living thing outside Planet Earth. S.E.T.I. – The Search for Extra Terrestrial Intelligence – is a show that explores all sides of this topic, from the planets we are finding around other stars, to the feasibility of traveling to the stars, and what aliens might actually be like, to the possibility that UFOs have been visiting and the various methods that scientists are using to get in touch. Will we make contact in our lifetimes? This stunning immersive show guides you through the myriad of ideas to a surprising conclusion. This program also includes a live tour of the current night sky and/or a trip out of our solar system to see where planets have been discovered around other stars.
Related NJ Core Curriculum Content Standards: 5.1.PC, 5.4.4A, 5.4.6A, 5.4.12A, 5.4.8C, 5.4.2G

Live Seasonal Star Show

Modified for each group, grades 3 - 12 
Introduce your students to the wonders of the day and night sky. This program can be tailored to your needs. Please choose one or two of the topics listed:

  • Locating stars, constellations, and planets in the current evening sky, stories of the constellations, movement of objects across the sky
  • Seasons
  • Moon Phases
  • Coordinate Systems
  • Daily and Annual Motion of the Sky and Planets.
  • Call to discuss topics you’d like to cover during this show.

Related NJ Core Curriculum Content Standards: 5.1.PC, 5.1.4A, 5.1.4B, 5.4.2A, 5.4.4A, 5.4.6A, 5.4.8A, 5.4.12A, 5.4.12F


Laser Light Concerts

Watch lasers draw pictures on the dome while music plays.
Fee:
$7.00 per person for scSky Lights laser and video concerthool groups, $12.00 per person for two shows on the same day.
Schools get one adult free for every ten students who attend.
Minimum group size: 15 students.

Sky Lights laser and video concert

Our youngest audience members can sing along with songs by mr. RAY (Family RideKalien the Alien) and Jane Murphy (Moonrock RockThe Planet Song). Some songs are illustrated with lasers and other songs feature video images.
Recommended for PreK and K.

Laser Kids

An introduction to how a laser works is followed by popular music from the 60’s, 70’s, 80’s, and 90’s, like Little Deuce CoupeThe Lion Sleeps TonightThe Adams Family theme song, and more.
Recommended for grades 1-5.

Laser Kids 2

Features songs including FirefliesYou're the One that I WantHot, Hot, Hot, and more.
Recommended for grades 1-5.

Light Waves

Features songs by The Beatles, Ke$ha, Owl City, Moby, and U2. 
Recommended for grades 4 and up.

Rock Laser Concerts

Looking for more rock and roll? We’ve got Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin, ELO, Beatles, Legends of Rock, and more.
Recommended for grades 6-adult.

Fright Light

A Halloween Laser Show with Monster MashThriller and the theme from Ghostbusters.
Recommended for grades 3 and up.

Winter Wonder Light

Laser Show featuring holiday music, including Jingle BellsSanta Baby and others.
Recommended for grades 1 and up.


Educational Shows Performance Information:

Show times are Monday - Friday at
10:00 a.m. 
11:00 a.m.
12 Noon
1:00 p.m.

  • Admission Fee:
    • $7.00 per person for groups of 15 or more
      or
    • $12.00 per person for two planetarium shows on the same day.
  • There is a minimum group charge of $105 for one show and $180 for two shows.
  • One adult admitted free for every 10 students.
  • Reservations are required at least two weeks prior to performance.
    Our February - June calendar fills up very quickly.
    Please call early in the school year to reserve your trip.

For reservations or more information, call the Planetarium at (908) 231-8805
Monday-Friday from 8:30am to 4:00pm, or e-mail us at: planet@raritanval.edu


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