Greetings Reader!

Welcome to Sky Lights! I hope you enjoy what you find, and return often. If this is your first visit, take some time to read these helpful tips. Whether you use Sky Lights for your own education, use it in the classroom for your students, or just enjoy looking at the pretty pictures, there’s a few things you should know to best utilize this educational resource.

1. Subscribing to Sky Lights is easy. Just click the Subscribe to Sky Lights link, enter your email address, and you’ll receive a notification every time a new Sky Lights article is posted. No charge, no gimmicks, no ads, and your email address will never be shared, sold, or used for any other purpose.
2. Search our archives via the BROWSE ALL POSTS page. With over 400 posts we’ve probably already answered your question, and you just might see something else interesting while you’re there.
3. Estimating angular distances in the sky is a helpful technique that’s easily learned. It’s a simple process of extending your hand toward the sky and using it as a “ruler.” See FAQ #3 more details.
4. What’s up in the sky type posts are obviously time sensitive, but more or less repeat every calendar year. So if you want to read about “what’s up” on any given date, search the archives to match the current month and date. You’ll find some topics are covered multiple times when you browse earlier posts.
5. The Moon and planets are not usually where out-of-date sky charts show them to be. That’s because the Moon and planets (the word “planet” means “wanderer”) drift through the constellations of stars and are always in motion. Stars and constellations, however, will be exactly where the sky charts show them on any specific day of the year … at least for a few millennia.
6. Hyperlinks to additional resources are provided in most posts. All posts are essentially stand-alone lessons on a given topic, but links are provided for further exploration. Internal links to other Sky Lights posts are always “live” while external links tend to break over time. My apologies for when that happens. In many cases a clever search via Google will find the missing content.
7. Additional valuable resources can be found on our Links page. The links are separated into categories to help you easily find what you need. Suggestions for new links are always welcome. I favor non-commercial sites without ads, especially sites hosted by government or educational institutions.
8. Sky Lights is best viewed on a full-sized desktop monitor. My blog runs on a responsive WordPress theme that attempts to adjust the screen layout for tablets and smartphones. But some of the graphics and videos will be difficult to see without scrolling on those smaller screens.