Hillcrest Elementary students take on the Eclipse

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DOTHAN, AL (WTVY) - Some Wiregrass schools let children out of class today, but Enterprise City Schools joined in on the eclipse celebration.

Meteorologist Lauren Linahan visited students at Hillcrest Elementary Monday morning to delve into the science behind the rare solar eclipse.

The students loved topping off a week of solar system lessons with an Eclipse 101 session with their local TV meteorologist.

The excitement Monday morning was high. The students were well prepared, and educated about the partial solar eclipse.

"I’m excited about the aurora,” said Avery Andress, first grader. “That's what the moon in the middle of the sun is called."

Parents volunteered to help ensure extra safety by securing the eclipse-viewing spectacles to paper plates.

"[Eclipse] Solar system glasses work because it's completely dark,” explained Avery. “It makes sure that the sun doesn't go in your eyes."

The Hillcrest students even learned a fun fact: that cats, dogs, and other animals know better than to look up at the sun.

"They can't wear glasses because they're not like people!" said Avery.

The Enterprise City school system bought eclipse glasses for all students.

Per parent permission, they could step outside to view the eclipse with their glasses, or stay inside and watch the livestream across the country.

"I want them to appreciate how rare of an occasion this is, and how they can celebrate science and our solar system,” said Hillcrest’s gifted specialist, Tricia Andress. “And things that happen not just in the classroom, but also outside the classroom."

Despite the threat of cloudy skies, students knew it would be a special day either way—if only for its culinary benefits.

“Sun Chips, Moon Pies, and Capri Suns, So, we get to have a big snack. A regular snack, and some more snacks!” said Rudy Wolfe, first grader.

Though Enterprise was not in the path of totality, the Wiregrass will experience a total solar eclipse in 2045, when the students at Hillcrest will be in their 30s.

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