Tips from experts, precautions for troublemakers, eclipse glasses and more

This article is for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Consult a qualified medical professional before engaging in any physical activity, or making any changes to your diet, medication or lifestyle.

Spectators in Chapel Hill, NC watch the solar eclipse.  What do parents need to know about the solar eclipse?  (Image via Getty)

What do parents need to know about the solar eclipse? (Image via Getty)

A total solar eclipse is coming to parts of Canada on April 8, and with this, some parents may be thinking: What am I going to do with my young children? For many Canadian parents or guardians, this astronomical event is exciting – but also kind of scary. The eclipse poses potential safety risks, especially when it comes to young children who – unsure of what to do – may be looking directly at the sun. Or, in other cases, they may not be interested in observing the eclipse. While it may seem easier and safer to keep your children indoors or put on a movie to distract them during the big event, for astrophysicist Dr. Nikhil Arora, this total eclipse serves as a great opportunity to help young children educate and find space. excited about science.

Can children watch the solar eclipse? An expert says yes

“This [eclipse] It’s a big deal,” says Arora, a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Physics at Queen’s University and Queen’s Eclipse Outreach Coordinator Yahoo Canada. “Mainly because it is the rare thing.”

Although eclipses occur every 18 months, many of these occur over water, out of sight from many major cities. The chance of an eclipse occurring over one specific spot on the planet for an extended period of time, like the upcoming total solar eclipse, is much rarer, occurring roughly every 400 years. “More than [a] once in a lifetime,” says Arora.

Not to mention, these eclipses — in an increasingly exclusive world — are accessible to all. “If you think of any other astronomical event, [if] you want to go to see a meteor shower [or] you want to go see comets or planets, you need expensive telescopes or you have to drive somewhere,” notes Arora. That’s not the case with an eclipse. [from] the moment you have eclipse glasses, you just step out of your home or workspace and you’re part of it.”

How children can watch the solar eclipse safely

Young girl looking at the sun during a solar eclipse on a rural park, outdoor family activity.Young girl looking at the sun during a solar eclipse on a rural park, outdoor family activity.

It is important to protect your eyesight when viewing the eclipse. (Getty)

While parental concerns about the safety of their children during an event like a total eclipse are valid, if properly prepared, children can enjoy the eclipse as much as anyone. “If you think about it, most of the things you do in the day are also very dangerous,” says Arora.

“It’s that ideology that we’re trying to promote, yes, it’s dangerous but that doesn’t mean you have to hide from it. It just means that we have to find ways for people to experience human depth. it.”

And do so in a fun and engaging way. As part of their outreach, Arora and members of the Ontario Eclipse Task Force — formed two years ago and made up of a variety of astronomers — came together to bring an educational package to educators, arming them with resources to educate young people from grades 1 to 12 onwards. the eclipse and offering various activities before and on the date of the event.

“One of the coolest things we’re doing in schools is pinhole camera workshops,” says Arora. These cameras – made with a variety of low-cost materials – are one of the safest ways to view the eclipse, as children will be looking away from the sun while watching it. “So for really young kids they can actually use these as part of the eclipse, but it’s completely safe because they’re never staring,” says Arora.

Is there any situation where I should keep my children inside?

While it is safe for children to watch the eclipse if they are armed with eclipse glasses or a pinhole camera, there are some situations where it may make more sense for parents to keep them indoors.

“You can put on the approved glasses, but make sure the kids understand the rules,” Dr. Ronald Benner, president of the American Optometric Association, said recently Yahoo Life.

Experts also say that parents need to be honest with themselves about their children’s behaviour.

If you don’t think they’re going to follow the rules, don’t take them out – be safe, don’t be sorry.Dr. Ronald Benner

Young children may not understand rules and consequences; some may be prone to breaking rules, and people with conditions such as autism may find it more difficult to keep the glasses on and follow precautions. “If you don’t think they’re going to follow the rules, don’t take them out — be safe, don’t be sad,” Benner added. Yahoo Life.

For parents who want to keep their kids inside, but still allow them to take in the eclipse, a live online stream between 2 and 4 pm will track the solar eclipse as it passes through the country.

How can I tell if eclipse sunglasses are legit?

According to s World News report, as the solar eclipse approaches, the market for counterfeit eclipse glasses is on the rise, posing a significant risk to consumers. Fake glasses may not provide adequate protection, leading to possible eye damage when observing solar phenomena.

The American Astronomical Society issued a warning last week saying that fake eclipse glasses were “polluting the market.” In February, Amazon pulled counterfeit product listings, a spokesperson said World News, “Continuously monitors its inventory and takes action to maintain a safe choice for customers, including removing non-compliant products.”

Experts have emphasized the importance of buying glasses that meet the ISO 12312-2 international standard for safe solar viewing. One option for Canada is the Soluna Eclipse Sunglasses, produced in the USA by the NASA approved manufacturer, American Paper Optics. The product is also recognized by the American Astronomical Society and verified for authenticity through the Amazon Transparency Program.


The Soluna glasses filter 100% of harmful ultraviolet and 99.999% of intense visible light.

$30 at Amazon

According to the AAS, you shouldn’t be able to see anything through proper eclipse glasses. You should only be able to faintly see very bright lights. “If you see anything else, such as home furnishings or pictures on the wall, your glasses are not dark enough to look at the sun,” the agency warned.

Let us know what you think by commenting below and tweeting @YahooStyleCA! We continued on Twitter and Instagram.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *