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Carreño - chief meteorologist visiting Burgin to teach students about eclipse
Posted in , on March 14, 2024

Carreño explains how special this eclipse is

Have a question about the upcoming eclipse?

Just ask a third or fourth grader at Burgin Elementary. They have the details down.

That’s because Univision’s chief meteorologist Nelly Carreño visited Burgin and gave the students a presentation about the upcoming eclipse. And she drilled home all the specifics.

“I want you to remember some key things that are going to happen with this eclipse because it will be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity,” she told the students seated on the gym floor.

Again and again she’d ask the students if they remembered a certain detail and they’d respond loudly in unison.eclipse presentation at Burgin Elementary

“When is the eclipse?” “April 8!”

“What time does the eclipse start?” “12:23!”

“What time does the total eclipse start?” “1:40!”

“How long will it last?” “Four minutes!” (Three minutes and 52 seconds to be exact.)

“Can you look at it without special glasses?” “No!”

“Looking at is so dangerous,” Carreño said. “The sun will be covered up, but the rays will still be coming through. Only use special glasses. Remember, sunglasses are not good enough.”

Carreño explained the science behind the eclipse and demonstrated how the moon, which is so much smaller than the sun, can block it completely.

“How can the moon cover the sun?” she asked. “The sun is 400 times bigger than the moon.”eclipse presentation at Burgin Elementary

It’s all about the distance. Carreño had the students stick up their thumbs and block out her head.

“The sun is also 400 times farther away than the moon,” she said.

Carreño also emphasized how special this event is.

“Who has cousins that live in another state?” she asked.

Dozens of hands shot up.

“They’re not going to get to see it,” she said. “You’re going to have to tell them how cool it is. That’s why this is so special.”

Plus, this won’t happen in the DFW area for another 300 years!


The presentation was all about the sun and moon, but a lot of the students were starstruck when they saw Carreño.eclipse presentation at Burgin Elementary

Especially the bilingual fourth graders. They know Carreño by name and watch her regularly on Univision. And they couldn’t leave the gym without giving her a hug.

“First of all, I know what it feels like to start with another language – how difficult it is when you come to a new country or when your parents are immigrants,” Carreño said after giving out dozens of hugs. “So, I wanted to make sure they saw somebody that looked like them on TV and succeeds in science and in math.”

Her visit brought the students a lot more than details about the eclipse. The Emmy-award-winner and only female chief meteorologist in Texas also brought inspiration.

That was obvious from the smiles and joy on so many of the student’s faces.

“The school [Burgin], I’ve heard some amazing things about,” Carreño said. “And when I got here, just going down the halls you can feel the loving atmosphere they have. I’m so glad that I came here … it means the world to me to come.”

The feeling was mutual. It meant the world to the students, too.