The Education Programme in 2023

Bookings/requests of the education programme are possible for dates until 22 December 2023.

Please note that all our workshops are already fully booked, i.e. we cannot offer additional workshops until the end of 2023! Dates for 2024 are not yet bookable!

Guided tours and a visit of a planetarium show are still possible - mor details on that on this website.

COVID-19 Precautions: We still ask you, not to visit ESO Supernova if you're tested positiv for COVID-19, feel unwell or have been in close contact with someone with COVID-19.

Please find more information below on how to book a planetarium show and/or a guided tour and/or a workshop for your pre-school group and school class.

ESO Supernova's educational programme.

Astronomy education is about one of the oldest natural and cultural sciences. It is using the most modern and overwhelming technologies trying to unravel some of the oldest questions like "How did this all began - will it ever end?" or "Are we alone?". In terms of science education in general astronomy can act as a gateway science opening the door for all STEM fields. ESO Supernova's educational programme, teacher trainings and resources are set up to foster the fascination and joy of science, to encourage discovery and self-directed learning in teams and to share ESO Supernova's passion for our universe with everyone.

Trainings for Teachers & Educators

Italian Teacher Training
Group of the Italian Teacher Training participating in a hands-on activity. Credit: ESO

Science and society is a rapidly evolving field and such is science education. ESO Supernova supports teachers and educators in keeping them up to date with recent developments and discoveries in astronomy and engineering by providing hands-on teacher trainings on those topics. Educators K-12 will not only learn the latest from current research, but also discover how this can be transferred into the classroom in a contemporary and sustainable way. You'll find more about what ESO Supernova offers especially for educators and about past and future teacher trainings here .

Programme for School- and Kindergarten Groups

Polish students at ESO Supernova
Polish students having a guided tour at ESO Supernova in their mother tongue led by a polish ESO colleauge. Credit: ESO/M. Zamani

Astronomy is a very interdisciplinary scientific discipline that incorporates all natural sciences taught in schools, as well as mathematics, computer science and even more. We make use of the students' interest for astronomy as a driving force for them to acquire science literacy. We have placed curricula learning contents in an astronomical context, designed hands-on workshops, planetarium shows and exhibition tours and so created unique learning opportunities to experience science like being a scientist for free.

Our educational goal is to ignite curiosity for science and to encourage young ones to think outside the box by combining school knowledge with modern applications in astronomy and engineering. The educational programme is using inquiry based learning strategies with hands-on workshops that can easily be replicated at school or at home. We promote the principle of equality of opportunity for all, especially in terms of education and learning opportunities – for that reason the educational programme is free of charge for school classes and Kindergarten groups. Unfortunately, we cannot offer workshops to day-care groups, after-school childcare or holiday programmes.

So far more than 30000 curious minds (K-12) have taken part in our educational programme together with more than 3500 educators who took the initiative to go on excursion with their students to an extracurricular learning site. Such special events promote motivation, curiosity and interest for MINT subjects and regarding the understanding of science can help to make the penny drop.

What is the education programme?

Depending on how much time you have at ESO Supernova and how large your group is, we can tailor your educational programme to suit the group’s interests.

The full educational programme consists of

  • an age-appropriate guided tour of the exhibition that ranges 2200 square metres and covers all facets of astronomy and earthbound telescope technology (30 min for Kindergarten, 60 min for schools) or a tour of ESO Headquarters for max. 25 participants older than 10 years (60 min) (more about tours)
  • a planetarium show including an explanation of the sky tonight (45 min for Kindergarten, 60 min for schools)
  • an age-appropriate workshop 

but also booking of parts of it (e.g. only a planetarium show) is possible.

Educational Programme
The three pillars of the educational programme: Guided tours, planetarium shows, workshops. Credit: ESO/M. Zamani/P. Horálek


  • Unfortunately, we cannot offer workshops to individuals, birthday parties, day-care groups, after-school childcare or holiday programmes.
  • The educational programme is offered only from Wednesday to Friday, but not on public holidays.
  • Workshops and tours are limited to a maximum number of 30 students (ESO Headquarters: max. 25 persons). Unfortunately, we cannot offer parallel workshops or tours, nor can we hold them directly one after the other.
  • Planetarium shows can be requested up to a maximum group size of 109 people (if no one else has booked this planetarium show so far). Please note that you should still plan for an adequate number of accompanying persons (1 person per 10 children/teenagers).


Wednesday to Friday: All parts of the educational programme as well as the entrance to the ESO Supernova are free of charge. Donations are very welcome.

Weekend: Guided tours as part of the education programme and workshops are not possible. Tickes for planetarium shows cost 5 Euro per person.


Dates & Booking Requests

  • Planetarium Show:

    Please check the ESO Supernova Online-Calendar to see if there is a planetarium show with enough free seats on your preferred date. If there is no show scheduled on that date, we can usually schedule a show at 9:30am, 11:00am, 2:00pm or 3:30pm unless another event (e.g. guided tour or workshop) is taking place simulanteously. Use the booking form below to book this Planertarium show for your group. By sepcifying date and time of your visit we'll know, which show you would like to attend or if we would need to schedule another show. The maximum number of participants of your group is determined by the maximum number of places that can be booked for this show.
  • Guided Tours:

    If you'd like to take part in a guided tour, please check the ESO Supernova Online-Calendar if there is already a guided tour scheduled on your preferred day or if your tour would overlap with a planetarium show taking place at the same time. If so, we unfortunately cannot schedule a tour for you. Otherwise we can usually schedule a one-hour guided tour for your group at 9:30am, 11:00am, 2:00pm or 3:30pm (the number of participants should not exceed 30, ESO Headquarters: max. 25 persons). Use the booking form below to book a guided tour for your group.
Booking options for tours
On Wednesday, a guided tour (or an additional planetarium show) would be possible from 11:00 to 12:00. On Thursday there is already a guided tour scheduled, so you can not have an additional tour (an additional planetarium show from 11:00 to 12:00 would be possible, a show at 14:00 would be not possible). No guided tour is possible on Friday, as it would overlap with the planetarium shows.
  • Workshops:

    Workshops are only available on the dates listed below for Kindergarten & Primary Schools or for Secondary Schools starting from grade 5. Dates that cannot be found in the corresponding date list cannot be booked. This also applies to dates further in the future. As soon as these dates are released, this will be published in the education newsletter. If you would like to book a planetarium show and/or an exhibition tour in addition to a workshop, please make sure that there are enough places available in the planetarium or that we can offer a guided tour on that day (see previous points above). The number of participants in a workshop should not exceed 30. We cannot offer parallel workshops, nor can we host them back to back. Use the booking form below to book the appropriate activities for your group.

    Please note that all our workshops are already fully booked, i.e. we cannot offer additional workshops until the end of 2023!


Important Information:

  • Our exhibition area is very large covering 2200 square metres and the planetarium shows are not only visited by your class/group. In order to be able to comply with the supervision obligation, we therefore expect one accompanying person for every 10 children/teenagers.
  • Please plan sufficient breaks for all activities.
  • We are only a small team handling approximately 9000 pupils per year. We try to process your request as quickly as possible. Nevertheless, it may take up to a week before we can send you a response.