Constellations Across Cultures

Recommended For: Ages 13 and Up

Badges: Pictures in the Sky, Global Cultures, Space & the Past

Download this activity as a PDF.

 

People have used the constellations to relate stories of their beliefs, experiences, creation, or mythology throughout human history. Different cultures and countries often adopted their own constellations and recognition of constellations has changed significantly over time. Even those cultures that recognize the same set of stars often have different stories behind them.

 

In this activity you will reflect on how some of those stories compare. You will also research to find stories for different constellations from cultures other than your own.

You Will Need

  • A reliable internet connection

 

Wonder

 

Why do different cultures tell different stories?

 

Read 

 

Ursa Major Myths from Around the World [download]

Think

 

Compare the seven different stories about the ursa major constellation contained in the pdf linked above.

1. What similarities do you see in the stories?

2. What differences? 

3. What might these stories say about the cultures that created them?

Research

 

Select another of the constellations listed below and see if you can find alternate stories for it from a different culture.

 

Wonderlog

Want to complete this task towards collecting a Wondernaut badge? Write down your thoughts about the questions above and post them, along with a link to the alternate story or stories you found. 

 

Ready to share? Head here!

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