Astronomy through the Herschels

Four circles of images of constellations, William, Caroline and John Herschel.
Alex Simpson and Jacob Dyer, Unsplash, NASA, ESA, Hubble and Public domain


The Royal Astronomical Society is excited to be able to put on four free workshops based on the Herschel family's many accomplishments in astronomy and science, called Astronomy through the Herschels. These workshops have been made possible by the Association of Discovery Centres (ASDC) and the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) for the Eyeing the Universe - valuing inclusion project. This project aims to investigate how promoting equity and inclusion as the keys to unlocking more diverse participation in STEM through three possible outcomes: possible selves, developing skills, and social connection. We will request participation in an evaluation created by ASDC after each workshop session to aid in their research into STEM participation. 

All four free (and fun) workshops will take place at Slough Museum at the Slough Trading Estate in Slough:

Slough Museum

Slough Trading Estate

72 Buckingham Avenue

Slough SL1 4PN

The workshops are for families with children from Years 4 - 9 (Ages 7-14) living in the Slough area. We invite registrants to join us for all four free workshops and collect badges for each to obtain a completion certificate of our Astronomy through the Herschels workshops throughout May.  We are happy to welcome the whole family but ask for participants in these age ranges due to the activity level and some of the materials used. 


Below are the dates and times offered for each Astronomy through the Herschels workshop and links to register for each:

A green panelled wall with orange illustrations of constellations Orion and Taurus.
Alex Simpson, Unsplash








For more information about Connecting the Dots workshop and to register, click here.

In this workshop we will learn about the night sky, stars, constellations, and electrical circuits. You will make your own illuminated card that you get to take home by completing a circuit using LEDs, a battery, and making a switch. Plus, we’ll even have some extra fun making our own connections and creating a circuit out of people!


A painting of William Herschel in front of the Heart Nebula
NASA and US Public Domain






For more information about William the telescope and discovery maker workshop and to register, click here.

Have you ever wondered about how we see objects that are far away, like planets and galaxies? In this workshop you will learn about telelscopes and some discoveries William Herschel made including discovering a new planet and infrared light. You’ll get to see, touch and look through a telescope and safely view the Sun and maybe even the Moon!


A painting of Caroline Herschel with a photo of a comet in the background
Jacob Dyer, Unsplash and Public Domain







For more information about Caroline the comet hunter workshop and to register, click here.

Caroline was the first paid and celebrated female astronomer who earned the prestigious Gold Medal from the Royal Astronomical Society. We will meet Caroline who will tell us her story of what it was like being a female scientist and making discoveries. Plus, we will make a comet, you will draw your own, and learn about what to look for when comets visit us. 


John Herschel wearing a robe
NASA, ESA, and the Hubble Heritage (STScI/AURA)-ESA/Hubble Collaboration and Nicholas Bradley







For more information about John the polymath influencer workshop and to register, click here.

John was a bit of an influencer himself and if he was around today we’re pretty sure he would have at least one million followers. You get to meet John Herschel who will share his many scientific pursuits and we’ll try out one of his inventions, cyanotypes. We’ll learn about ultraviolet light, our Sun and do a bit of chemistry. It’s related to astronomy and life on this planet, you and me, and the birth of the Royal Astronomical Society! 


Advert for the Astronomy through the Herschels workshops at Slough Museum in Slough
Alex Simpson and Jacob Dyer, Unsplash, NASA, ESA, Hubble and Public domain










Advert and description of four workshops for Astronomy through the Herschels
Alex Simpson and Jacob Dyer, Unsplash, NASA, ESA, Hubble and Public domain






















Logos for Slough Museum, Association for Discovery Centres, and The Royal Astronomical Society
Slough Museum, ASDC, and RAS respectively