Astronomy or Astrology?

Posted on June 6, 2014 by Lesley Arnold

In my previous post I wrote:
Last week I overheard a boy and girl having a conversation about different planets. They were looking at astronomy books in the library. The boy said, “It’s fun learning new facts about the different planets. I just love astrology.” What do you think? What should the girl reply?”

Thank you to all for your terrific comments!
I was hoping that the girl would say, ” I like learning new facts about the planets, too. I just love Astronomy.”
The two words are often confused by people. In the Oak Meadow science curriculum, you’ve learned that Astronomy is the study of the planets, stars, universes, galaxies, pulsars, and beyond. It’s a branch of physics.
“It does make a certain amount of sense. Astronomy is, strictly speaking, the measurement of the positions of the stars and planets, “ordering the stars,” so to speak. In the old days, interpreting those measurements was called astrology, but nowadays we interpret our measurements, not with numerology and unfounded conjecture, but with physics, and we call it astrophysics” This quote came from Britt Scharringhausen at the website, Ask an Astronomer.
In the the study of astronomy in the Oak Meadow 7th grade science curriculum, there’s an assignment to write a report on a constellation. It’s impressive when a student’s answer is based on the astronomical details and the astrological story of the constellation.
Check out: Curious About Astronomy: What’s the difference between astronomy and astrology?