Other CIESE AWARDS
- Port Lincoln
Primary School, South Australia
- St. Jude's School,
High School, Warangal, India
- I.I.S.S. "G La
Elementary School, Duluth, Georgia
Morales High School
Our school, Sekolah Alam, which could be best translated in english as
"the Natural school" , is an environmental-based school, whose vision
is to enable children to learn from the wishdom of their surounding
nature. Most of the activities are done outdoor, in order to maximize
the student interaction with nature. Therefore when we heard about the
noonday project we were quite eager to register. since this kind of
activity is quite aligned with our teaching method.
Because of our 7th Grader is a small class consists of 4 students (2
boys and 2 girls), we decided to only plane for a single group
observation. We are a bit worry about the weather condition, since
february until april are a "pancaroba" (transitional) months between
rain and dry season. In those months the weather is very unpredictable.
What happened is that we couldn't start the observation until the last
day (March 25th) because of the cloud and rain during the 22th - 24th.
The last day is actually a holiday (easter holiday) but since the
group is very eager to carry out the observation, they are willing to
sacrifice their holiday to come to school that day... what a spirit !!!
We prepare the observation station in the center of our football
field, in order to avoid any obstruction at all. The field preparation
was started on 10.00 AM in order to have enough time before noon. The
measuring device is made from bamboo stick and, on the direction of the
sunlight we laid a tracing paper. Since we are living very near to the
equator, unlike the location in sub tropic area, we always had a very
short shadow during noon, so we wre only prepare les than 50 cms long
The students had been previously trained about the theoritical
aspect of the project by using the material from the project website
and also from other resources, especially for the trigonomtery aspect.
The measurement stared at 11.15 AM and the measurement was made
every 15 minutes. At 11.15 the shadow length was 26.2 sm.. and at noon
the shadow reach the shortest length of 14 cm before increasing again
until 22 cm (at the opposite direction) at 12.30.
After the measurement the tracing paper were taken back to the
classroom to be re-measured for accuracy. Then by using Micrsoft Excel
spreadsheet we calculated the sun's angle at the shortest shadow at
From the datasheet in the project's website, we choose as the
partner site the data from Charles Brant Chesney Elementary school in
Duluth Georgia because of the proximity in observation date. The result
is quite amazing we've found that the earth's circumference is
40,007.88 km !!, which is prety close to the benchmark of 40,008 km.
The students were very proud about the experiments, and the most
important thing is that now, they have new reason to fall in love with
Thanks for all
7th Grade Teacher
Port Lincoln Primary School, Port Lincoln,
are 6 students from the year 7 Maths group. We attend the Port Lincoln
Primary School. Port Lincoln has a population of about 13000 and is in
South Australia. We conducted our measurements on Friday 18th March, a
clear sunny day. We used a meter ruler supported by a science tripod. A
spirit level ensure our 90 degree angle. We measured every 2 minutes
from 13:15 to 13:45. (South Australia has day light saving.)
We drew a triangle scaled by 1:10 ratio using a geoliner to measure the
perpendicular angle. We also constructed the same triangle using a
compass for the 90 degree angle. In both cases we calculated the
angle to be 33 degrees. We chose Chelsea Middle School to partner with
. The central angle was 75 degrees the distance between us is 8563.65
kms. We calculated the circumference to be 41105.52 kms. The percentage
error was 2.8%
Here are some photos.
Jude's School, Quebec, Canada
Dear Mr. Charischak,
We would like to tell you how much we enjoyed working on the Noonday
project. We learned a great deal. On April 17th, the project was also
featured in the Gazette newspaper of Montreal. We are sending you the
newspaper clipping as attachment. (Coming soon...)
Thank you for putting together a great project!
Students of 5IB,
Shantinikan High School,
Shantiniketan High School
have decided to do the project on March 20th (Sunday). There are
totally 20 students participating in the project, we have divided them
into 4 groups. To know about the technical aspects of the project
children spent an hour after the school hours from March 15 onwards.
By 11’o clock on the day of equinox, all the teams were ready with
their measuring sticks in the ground. They measured the length of the
shadow from 11:45 to 12:30 for every 10 minutes. They recorded shortest
shadow at 12:20 PM (i.e, the local noon at Warangal). Then we sat down
for calculating circumference. Using trigonometry they fond the angle
of the sun, which equaled the angle at the center of the earth. The
distance between warangal and equator was found to be 1998 KM, so
* 20 (20 sectors) gave us the circumference.
We invited the Director of the planetarium and press to our school. The
Director was with us till we calculated the circumference. He felt
happy and thanked us for making him learn about Eratosthenes. All the
local news papers and TV channels covered this news. We had lots of fun.
following table indicates the measured data.
Warangal, Andhrapradesh, India
Latitude : 18 n
Longitude : 79.38.12 e
Information about the school:
Grade level : 8, 9
The name of our school is shanti niketan high school.located at
warangal in state of andhrapradesh in india. Warangal is a historical
city,the capital of kakatiyas. In 11th century ad. (visited by marco
We have great masterpiece of architecture like thousand pillars temple,
fort, ramappa temple etc. Our school is one of the reputed schools in
warangal with a strength of 1200.
Apart from studies we learn classical dance (kuchipudu), music
(carnatic vocal), karate etc. We have done a science fair recently in
our school, it is exciting to do this live project now.
There are nearly 50 students participating in this project. They have
been divided into 10 teams,they have already gone for a mock
measurement, and they are busy writing the project report.
"G La Pira"
This is Rocco G. Maltese sending pictures of stuff by means my students
and I have performed meridian location and shadow measurements at
I.I.S.S. "G La Pira" - Pozzallo (Italy) from 15 through 22nd of march.
A picture is concerned with sextant determination of maximum height of
the sun at noon to compare with our stuff.
I wish you all the best
Rocco g. Maltese
School Name: I.I.S.S: "G. La Pira" Naut. School
School Location: Via E. Giunta - 97016 POZZALLO (RG) - Italy
Email Address : firstname.lastname@example.org
Experimenter : Rocco G. Maltese
Suject Area: Physics
Latitude: 36 44 51 N
Longitude: 14 53 00 E
Distance from Equator : 4068.0 km
Measured shadow angle in degrees : 35.52
Calculated Earth Circumference : 41223.098 km
During the month of February my students and I have performed shadow
measuremnts with a shadow plot to fix the exact position of the
meridian for the noon passage. We have posted some pictures too in the
gallery of all our stuff used: shadow plot and meter stick. One day we
have also ask to our students attending higher navigation class to
perform a measurement of the upper passage of the sun to check the hour
of the passage and the position of the meridian line. We get a
confortable accord with the our previous measurements with shadow plot.
We got seven measurements from 15/03 to 22/03, and have taken the mean
value of the shadow angles and the circunference values in such a way
to obtain a relative percentual error of 3.3%. This isn't a good one
results but it is very important all the work that our pupils have done
in these days.
We looking forward to share our experiece measuments procedures with
few of you.
All the best from Rocco and his students.
Chesney Elementary School,
From: Chesney Elementary/5th Grade FOCUS
Date: Wednesday, 4 May 2005 11:43:38
Subject: Final Report
Hi, this is the 5th grade gifted class at Charles Brant Chesney
We got involved in this project after we read the book The Librarian
Who Measured the Earth, by Kathryn Lasky, which really inspired us to
conduct Eratosthenes experiment for determining the circumference of
Earth ourselves. Then we heard about the Noon Day Project and our
teacher signed us up.
We collected the materials we would need whcih included meter sticks,
protractors, tape measures, butcher paper, a plumb bob borrowed from
one student's uncle, and pencils.
We decided we needed to first find out the latitiude and longitude of
our city, Duluth, Georgia, so we used the Internet and discovered our
latitude is 33.9775 N and longitude 84.14955 W. We discussed our
experiment step-by-step and practiced using our materials and measuring
angles in the classroom. We also talked about how the direct rays of
the sun strike Earth and how objects on Earth cast shadows that create
different angles depending on the location. We figured out that using
another meter stick to create the angle from the top of the meter stick
to the ground was not going to work, because the meter stick wasn't
long enough, so we decided to use a measuring tape which was 150cm long
to visually make the hypontenuse formed by the meter stick and the
On Friday, March 18, we took our first measurements. One team decided
to anchor their measuring device, the meter stick, with clay. Another
team tried using an empty toilet paper roll filled with marbles to keep
their meter stick vertical. We researched the time of 'true noon' in
Duluth for March 18, which was 12:43 p.m. We went outside 30 minutes
before true noon to begin taking measurements of the Sun's angle. First
we set up the butcher paper, which we were using to make sure we could
see the shadow well,on the sidewalk behind our school. Since the wind
was strong, we had to set rocks on the corners of the paper. Second we
stood the meter stick up. Some teams just used one person to hold the
stick steady, but it was not an easy task. We shared the plumb bob to
check that our meter sticks were at true vertical. The Sun cast a good
shadow as we tried to take measurements every two minutes. We continued
for 30 minutes after true noon. Our teams had slightly different
The weather that next week was rainy, cloudy and stormy. We were
worried that we would not get a second chance to measure the Sun's
angle, but Wednesday the weather finally cleared.
We invited our parents to come to school on Thursday, March 24 to help
us make a second set of measurements. It was a clear, sunny day with
less wind. They were a big help, because we needed an extra person on
each team to help hold the meter stick or to make sure we were making
accurate measurements. Our teams' measurements were closer to each
other the second day. Our Sun's angle measurements averaged
We chose Sekolah Alam School in Jakarta Indonesia for our partner city.
We were excited that they had chosen us. We wanted to see how close our
two results would be.
The sun's angle at Jakarta was 7.970 degrees. Now that we had the angle
of both cities, we would have to find the distance between Jakarta and
Duluth in miles, kilometers and we also found the difference in degrees
of Latitude between our cities by adding the degrees of Latitude from
Duluth to the Equator, 33.9775 and 6.1333 which was 40.1108.
When we used the formula for finding circumference,using the distance
in miles and kilometers between our two cities, we came up with answers
that did not seem accurate.
We had trouble using the trigonometry formula.
Our teacher did some research and then shared with our class a piece of
information that makes the whole process of finding the circumference
so much easier. She told us that every single degree on Earth has about
the value of 111 miles. When we subtracted Jakarta's sun angle from our
sun angle, it was about 28 degrees. We multiplied 28 by 111 which was
which was 3,108 miles. After that, as a circle is made up of 360
degrees, and the circumference of Earth is a circle, we divided 360 by
28. The quotient was 12.85 rounded to the nearest hundredth. Twelve and
eighty-five hundredths is how many sections of 3,108 miles that make up
the total distance around Earth. We multiplied 3,108 by 12.85 to get
the circumference 39,937.8 miles. This made us cheer, because we felt
this was more accurate than any of our other measurements. We tried
using the Sun's angle measurement from Conners Emerson School in Bar
Harbor Maine also, but we think our results weren't accurate, because
we took measurements on different days.
Next year, we will take arrange to take measurements on the same day as
our partner cities.
We think everyone should know the number of miles (111) in a degree of
latitiude, because it was a lot easier to calculate the circumference
of Earth without this information. The whole experience was fun and we
learned a lot.
5TH Grade FOCUS
Charles Brant Chesney Elementary
Francisco Morales High School
Naranjito, Puerto Rico
Latitude: 18:18:18 N
Longitude: 66:14:42 W
Class name: Sigma
Grade: 12th grade, Physics
Sun angle: 18º
Earth circumference: 40,
was the first time that our school participates on a collaborative
Internet project. We choose the Noon Day Project because it was
interesting and have many applications in the Physics class we are
taking. By calculating the Earth’s circumference, we can apply the math
used in Physics. Seven groups composed by five students each worked on
We made many activities
along the project to complete the Earth’s circumference calculation. In
the first one, we had to find out why the measures have to be near on
either March 21 or September 21. We learned that near these days is the
equinox, because both, the day and the night last the same. The next
activity we work out was to know who Eratosthenes was. Knowing who he
was is important because he was the first person who measured the
Earth’s circumference. Then, we had to find out the latitude and
longitude of our city (Naranjito). We also looked for the Earth’s
circumference by the existence data. The third activity was to design a
model so we could obtain our own measures. Our device was wood stands
were we attach a meter stick and a protractor. Our parents help to
build this device.
met at our school on March 21 to measure the shadow and the angle using
the model we designed. We started measuring at 11: 50 a.m. and finished
at 1:00 p.m. The angle was calculate using trigonometric functions (we
calculate the tangent of the angle using the measures of the triangle
made by the meter stick and its shadow). The angle measured was 18°
and we subtracted it from the angle measure at Conners Emerson Middle
School located at Bar Harbor, Maine USA, which was 44°. We choose
this school because they made the measurements the same day we made
them. This calculation represents the central angle between Bar Harbor
and our city. After having the central angle, we found the distance
between Naranjito and Bar Harbor using the site Surface Distance
between Two Points of Latitude and Longitude (http://www.wcrl.ars.usda.
gov/cec/java/lat-long.htm) created by John A. Byers in 1997 (Chemical
Ecology). This distance is 2897 km. With both, the central angle and
the distance, we calculated the Earth’s circumference. With this data,
we calculated the percent error. The central angle we got was 26º
and the circumference result in 40,209.2 km. This represents a percent
error of 0.33%.
The relevant aspects that
made possible the good results we obtained in this project were that we
designed a good model and took the right measures at the right time.
Thanks to this, we got really good measures, so the percent error was
small. If we have the opportunity to work on this project again, we
would do it the same way because the method we used was adequate.
We learned a lot working on
this project, especially how Eratosthenes measured the Earth’s
circumference using the length of the shadow. We used the same method
as him with instruments we built. In addition, we ended up with our own
results of the Earth’s circumference. We hope that future classes in
our school continue working on this project because they can learn more
about this topic as we have.
would like to thank Mr. Ihor Charischak for creating a wonderful
project that engaged us in collaborative work. We also thank the
students and teacher (Winnie) from Conners Emerson School geometry
class for sharing their measurements with us. It was a great experience.