Earth Science Week Update July 2010

EARTH SCIENCE WEEK UPDATE
American Geosciences Institute
Vol. 8, No. 7: July 2010

IN THIS ISSUE…

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Don’t Delay: Order Your
Earth Science Week Toolkit
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Earth Science Week 2010 Toolkits are available now! The kit contains everything you need to prepare for Earth Science Week (October 10-16, 2010), which celebrates the theme “Exploring Energy.”

To ensure that you are among the first to receive these exciting educational resources, order yours today. The Earth Science Week 2010 Toolkit includes:

  • 12-month school-year activity calendar, suitable for hanging
  • New Earth Science Week poster, including an energy activity
  • USGS energy resources, including a booklet and online info
  • “What You Need to Know About Energy” booklet by NAS
  • National Park Service poster on fossils nationwide
  • NASA energy resources, including a flyer on climate interactions
  • Environmental science material from the Energy Department
  • “Energy Sources of the World” poster by SPE
  • Bookmark pointing to GIS education online from ESRI
  • Genuine field notebook from Rite in the Rain
  • “Energy Outlook” brochure from ExxonMobil
  • Educational material from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
  • Activity sheets from the Association for Women Geoscientists
  • Brochures, bookmarks, fact sheets, postcards, and more

For ordering, special shipping, bulk orders, and more information, visit http://www.earthsciweek.org/materials/index.html.

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Kick Off the Fun on
International EarthCache Day
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Earth Science Week begins again this year with International EarthCache Day on Sunday, Oct. 10, 2010. Whether you’re a teacher, a student, or just someone who enjoys Earth science firsthand, EarthCaching provides a great way to kick off the celebration.

EarthCaching is a variation of a recreational activity known as geocaching. Typically a geocache organizer posts latitude and longitude coordinates on the Internet to advertise a “cache,” or scavenger-hunt destination, which geocachers locate by using GPS devices. Today, hundreds of thousands of caches have been prepared in over 200 countries, according to Geocaching.com. The activity has attracted over a million participants worldwide.

EarthCachers have added an educational dimension. When you visit an EarthCache, you learn something special about Earth science, the geology of the location, or how the Earth’s resources and environment are managed there. EarthCaching has been developed by the Geological Society of America - a major Earth Science Week partner - along with Groundspeak, Inc., and the geocaching community. You are invited visit or establish an EarthCache in your area on International EarthCache Day (10/10/10). To learn more, visit http://www.earthcache.org.

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Find New Resources at
National Fossil Day Online
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To help you prepare for the first annual National Fossil Day (October 13) during Earth Science Week 2010, the National Park Service recently launched a new website full of educational resources and information designed specifically for students and teachers (http://nature.nps.gov/geology/nationalfossilday/).

On the site’s NPS Fossil Park Highlights page, for example, you’ll find lesson plans developed to reflect select state standards, fossil trading cards, videos about pygmy mammoths, special brochures, a virtual museum exhibit on dinosaurs, and more. Check out the page at http://nature.nps.gov/geology/nationalfossilday/park_highlights.cfm.

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Verizon Thinkfinity
Spurs Summer Learning
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Looking for free and entertaining online activities to keep students excited about learning through the summer? Verizon Thinkfinity has created a special Summer Learning feature that includes activities and educational resources. For example, “Calculation Nation,” an online game from the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, enables students to challenge opponents around the world while practicing fundamental skills.

Parent-friendly resources, in-class activities, and homework help can be found quickly and searched by grade level, keyword, or subject. In addition, Verizon Thinkfinity continues to offer a professional development program that allows teachers to sign up for free online or face-to-face training. Go online for Verizon Thinkfinity (http://www.thinkfinity.org).

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AIPG Aims to Educate
Next-Generation Geologists
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The American Institute of Professional Geologists (AIPG), an AGI member society, was founded to advocate for geologists and certify their credentials. Today AIPG is reaching out to Earth science students and educators.

Available online for free download, AIPG offers several PowerPoint presentations presenting relevant career information for young, newly graduated geoscientists. These presentations also enable K-12 teachers to convey what geoscientists do for a living.

Students who become AIPG members can establish professional contacts, attend meetings and field trips, receive mentoring from professionals and potential employers, access undergraduate scholarships, tap resources on careers in geology, and submit papers to the journal “The Professional Geologist.“ To learn more, visit http://www.aipg.org.

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NAAEE Event Highlights
Environmental Education
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The North American Association for Environmental Education (NAAEE) 2010 Conference is being held from September 29 to October 2 in Buffalo-Niagara. NAAEE, a nonprofit group dedicated to strengthening environmental education in North America, aims to provide the highest-quality research-based programs, products, and services for those engaged in environmental education.

Registration remains open. The “early bird” deadline is August 11, 2010. For information, see http://www.naaee.org/conference/.

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NGWA: Learn How to
Protect Your Groundwater
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The National Ground Water Association (NGWA) will launch its first annual Protect Your Groundwater Day on September 14, 2010, promoting water conservation and contamination prevention as ways to protect groundwater resources.

What’s the big deal? “We all have a stake in maintaining its quality and quantity,” according to the NGWA event website. “For starters, 95 percent of all available freshwater comes from aquifers underground. Being a good steward of groundwater just makes sense.”

NGWA, an AGI member society, hopes that by focusing on actionable steps that every person can take, Protect Your Groundwater Day can spur people to protect this resource. For educational information and resources, go online (http://www.ngwa.org/public/pygd.aspx).

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College Art Gallery’s
Exhibit Explores Energy
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The Williamson Gallery at Art Center College of Design, which explores ideas at the intersection of art and science, is mounting an exhibition called “ENERGY” from October 8, 2010 to January 8, 2011.

“ENERGY will combine work by contemporary artists with the products of scientists and ecologists,” says Stephen Nowlin, director of the gallery in Pasadena, California. “ENERGY is meant to inspire a different and deeper resonance with a subject that is core to all life and matter.” To learn more, see http://www.artcenter.edu/williamson/.

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View ‘Why Earth Science’
Online With Your Students
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AGI’s “Why Earth Science” video is now available for free viewing online on YouTube and TeacherTube. For an exciting introduction to the geosciences, you can&;rsquo;t do better than this six-minute clip, featuring eye-popping cinematography and computer-animation highlights from AGI’s “Faces of Earth” mini-series, which aired recently on The Science Channel.

The video, which recently won a Silver Telly Award, is ideal for illustrating the importance of Earth science to not only students, but also education decisionmakers who may be weighing the subject’s place in the local curriculum. To view the clip on YouTube, go to http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jxbIJH4fTYo, or on TeacherTube, go to http://www.teachertube.com/viewVideo.php?video_id=47669.

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The American Geosciences Institute is a nonprofit federation of 46 geoscientific and professional associations that represents more than 120,000 geologists, geophysicists, and other earth scientists. Founded in 1948, AGI provides information services to geoscientists, serves as a voice of shared interests in the profession, plays a major role in strengthening geoscience education, and strives to increase public awareness of the vital role the geosciences play in society’s use of resources and interaction with the environment. For contact information, please visit http://www.earthsciweek.org/contactus/index.html.


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