Hila Astronomy Project
Supports the Ontario Science and Technology
Earth and Space Systems: Grade 6
Identifying the Stars and Constellations
The Earth rotates on its axis every 23.93 hours, this
motion causes the apparent positions of the stars to shift through the
just as the sun appears to move through the sky during the day.
The Earth orbits the sun every 365.26 days,
this motion, the stars that are visible at night, change throughout the
The Star Finder is a device that will allow you to
determine which stars and other objects in space, will be visible on a
Video Instructions for using your
Video - Using your Hila Starfinder
- Orion a Winter Constellation
- Ursa Major
- paper punch
- glue stick
- paper rivet
- heavy card (cereal box will do)
- masking tape
Using your Star Finder
- print, then cut out star wheel, time circle
- Note: when the PDF print dialog pops up,
choose "Page Scaling - None" or "Fit Actual Size"
here for star wheel (PDF File)
here for time circle (PDF File)
- click here for key
keys per page - classroom use
- cut a 19 cm square from heavy card (see next
check the dimension of the "Time Circle" some printers will print to a
different size then 19 cm.
- Adjust the size of the heavy card square
to match the printed size of the Time Circle.
- center star wheel on heavy card
- push paper rivet through center of star wheel
- glue the corners of the time circle to the
- (make certain the star wheel is not glued)
- punch out the four holes on the time circle
- pull thread through the holes to create a
cross on the star wheel
- tape thread on back
- tape key to back of card
- Rotate the star wheel to match the required
date and time.
- The edge of the oval opening represents the
- N, E, W, and S indicate horizon direction.
- The thread cross indicates a spot directly
Select August 20 at 10:00 PM (22:00). Directly
overhead you will find the Constellation Cygnus, low in the South-West
is the Constellation Sagittarius, Hercules is high toward the West and
Ursa Major (the Big Dipper) is above the North-West horizon.
The planets, moon and sun are not included on
this chart because they have their own motion against the stars.
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