Parents' Guide to

Google Sky

By Michelle Kitt, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 8+

Interactive space map needs an update.

Google Sky Poster Image

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Kids say (2):

The hundreds of bright dots against GOOGLE SKY’s dark expanse of space beg to be explored. Zoom in and the whole thing loses gas like a dying white dwarf star. A bright blue dot becomes a bigger, fuzzy blue dot and Google Sky doesn’t say what it is, where it is, or if you can see it in your backyard sky (kids will ask). Linked sky-gazing podcasts from Earth & Sky could help, but the most recent is from 2008. Showcases from reputable sources like the Sloan Digital Sky Survey supply stunning pictures -- also from 2008 -- but the information pop-ups may be too advanced for most kids. Try visiting the sources directly; Earth & Sky still publishes daily podcasts and the Sloan Digital Sky Survey continues today. But neither beats a peek through a telescope at the real thing.

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