Earth Science Week Update October 2014

American Geosciences Institute
Vol. 12, No. 10: October 2014


Celebrate Earth Science
With NASA Resources

Students of all ages can join NASA in celebrating and learning about the geosciences. A wealth of educational resources, blog posts, and other items can be found online ( In addition, check out these resources and opportunities, new for Earth Science Week 2014:

  • #SkyScience -- Become a “citizen scientist” October 12-18 and contribute to NASA science while learning about clouds and how they affect weather and climate. You can find and coordinate with a satellite passing overhead. Everything you need to learn about #SkyScience is at Wondering how to incorporate #SkyScience into your classroom? See
  • Educator Webinar on MY NASA DATA, GLOBE Digital Earth System Poster, Tuesday, October 14, 6-7pm ET -- Find out about an exciting new resource for exploring real science data and making Earth system connections. The MY NASA DATA-GLOBE ePoster and activities for K-12 students are discussed, with a focus on those meeting NGSS performance expectations, science practices, and cross-cutting concepts related to K-12 Earth’s Systems. Visit
  • Educator Webinar on NASA STEM Spanish Immersion, National Climate Assessment in Spanish, Wednesday, October 15, 4-5pm ET -- Learn about the ground-breaking National Climate Assessment report, including an in-depth view on how our climate is changing and what observations are telling us. Discover how to integrate the National Climate Assessment into your STEM classroom through NASA hands-on activities. The entire session and lessons are in Spanish. See
  • Educator Webinar on Mapping Earth’s Water Cycle with NASA Scientists, Thursday, October 16, 7-8pm ET -- Scientists from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory address how data from satellite missions help us understand the water cycle, including extreme events such as floods. This presentation uses an online concept map tool. Unlike traditional slide-based presentations, these dynamic maps act can be explored with an audience, instead of a one-way, linear presentation. The free online concept maps are loaded with educational assets (images, videos, news items) that participants can use. Visit

Join in these live NASA events during Earth Science Week at Also, through Earth Science Week and beyond, visit for a growing collection of first-hand stories from NASA Earth explorers, resources for all ages, and more.

Visit DC’s Smithsonian for
National Fossil Day Event

Join paleontologists and park rangers for the fifth annual National Fossil Day event in Washington, D.C. The National Park Service and the Smithsonian Institution are collaborating to host the National Fossil Day Celebration at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Wednesday, October 15, 2014.

Six exciting activities will take place at the museum’s education center, Q?rius:
  •   “Sifting for Fossils.” Take on the role of a paleontologist by searching through matrix to find and identify marine fossils.
  •   “Ask a Paleontologist.” Talk with museum and U. S. Geological Survey scientists about their research and what it’s like to be a paleontologist.
  •   “Paleo Art: Drawing Fossils.” Work with scientific illustrators to learn how to draw fossils and reconstruct ancient plants and animals using fossil evidence.
  •   “Shark!!” Explore a variety of fossil shark teeth and learn more about the early history of sharks.
  •   “FossiLab.” Learn how specialists extract fossils from rock, sift microfossils from gravel and sand and rebuild fossils found in many pieces.
  •   “Explore the Q?rius Fossil Collection.” Q?rius has hundreds of fossils that visitors can handle.

A major Earth Science Week event, the program will begin with remarks from museum and agency officials, followed by a gathering of grade school children who will recite the “Junior Paleontologist Pledge” on the mall steps of the museum. On hand will be scientists from the National Park Service, the Bureau of Land Management, the National Science Foundation, Maryland Dinosaur Park, and AGI. The event is free and open to the public. For information, see

Don’t Delay: Order Your
Earth Science Week Toolkit

Earth Science Week 2014 Toolkits are available now! The kit contains everything you need to celebrate Earth Science Week (October 12-18) and explore Earth science education throughout the year.

Focusing on the theme “Earth’s Connected Systems,” the 2014 kit includes:
  •   A 12-month school-year activity calendar, suitable for hanging
  •   The new Earth Science Week poster, including a learning activity
  •   Material on geoscience resources from USGS
  •   NASA education materials on Earth system science
  •   A genuine field notebook from Rite in the Rain
  •   GLOBE activity material from NOAA
  •   National Park Service poster on caves of the national parks
  •   Soil science resource from Soil Science Society of America
  •   Planetary change material from Howard Hughes Medical Institute
  •   Educational material from U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
  •   Energy4Me poster on energy science
  •   A poster explaining aggregates from SME
  •   Material on climate from the Department of Energy
  •   A “Geographic Groceries” poster from National Geographic
  •   Dinosaurs flyer from Bureau of Land Management
  •   Brochures, bookmarks, fact sheets, postcards, and more
Bulk discounts are available. For ordering, special shipping, bulk order discounts, and more information, visit
Act Now to Win Award
For Earth Science Teaching

Earth Science Week 2014 (October 12-18) wouldn’t be so successful without the efforts of amazing Earth science teachers. That’s why AGI is announcing details for its upcoming award competition, the 2014 Edward C. Roy, Jr. Award for Excellence in K-8 Earth Science Teaching. Each year, this award recognizes one full-time U.S. teacher from kindergarten to eighth grade for leadership and innovation in Earth science education.

The winner will receive a $2,500 prize and a travel grant of $1,000 to attend the National Science Teachers Association (NSTA) Annual Conference in Chicago in March 2015 to accept the award. To be eligible for the 2014 competition, applications must be postmarked by January 10, 2014.

This award is named in honor of Dr. Edward C. Roy, Jr., a past president of AGI, who was a strong and dedicated supporter of Earth science education. To learn more, visit

Esri Blogs for Earth Science
Educators and GIS

How can you explore mapping during Earth Science Week 2014? Start with longtime program partner Esri. Leading the charge to incorporate GIS (geographic information system) technology and mapping software in Earth science education, Esri is blogging to provide educators with useful resources and information during Earth Science Week 2014. Visit for more information.

Explore the curriculum, “Mapping Our World” for no-cost, web-based Earth science and physical geography activities at

Contest Winners to Be
Announced Next Month

Friday, October 17, is the deadline to mail your submissions! AGI thanks the many hundreds of students, educators, and others who are entering this year’s Earth Science Week photo, visual arts, and essay contests (

Winners will be announced in November 2014. AGI will contact winners directly and recognize their success both on the Earth Science Week website ( and in this electronic newsletter.

Thanks to Earth Science
Week’s Generous Sponsors

Thanks to the generosity of our sponsors, Earth Science Week is able to promote awareness and appreciation of the geosciences among over 50 million people every year. AGI would like to express its appreciation to the many government agencies, nonprofit groups, and corporations that make the program possible.

Earth Science Week couldn’t do its important work without the support of organizations such as the U.S. Geological Survey; National Park Service; AAPG Foundation; NASA; American Geophysical Union; National Geographic; Society for Mining, Metallurgy and Exploration; Geological Society of America; Association of American State Geologists; Archaeological Institute of America; and Esri. In addition, year after year, Earth Science Week Toolkits are purchased in bulk for distribution to educators by organizations such as NASA and Schnabel Engineering.

To learn how your organization can become an Earth Science Week Sponsor, visit online. To order Earth Science Week Toolkits for teachers in your area, go to
Geologic Map Day
Boosts Mapping Education

The third annual Geologic Map Day is being celebrated with learning activities across the country on Friday, October 17. Hosted by the U.S. Geological Survey, Association of American State Geologists, National Park Service, Geological Society of America, NASA, and Esri in partnership with AGI, this special event promotes awareness of the study, uses, importance of geologic mapping for education, science, business, and a variety of public policy concerns.

Check out the Geologic Map Day poster included in the Earth Science Week 2014 Toolkit ( The poster provides a geologic map, plus step-by-step instructions for a related classroom activity. Additional resources for learning about geologic maps can be found on the new Geologic Map Day web page (

AAPG Recognizes Top
Earth Science Teacher

The American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG) Foundation, a longtime Earth Science Week partner, will award $6,000 at the AAPG Annual Convention in Denver in May 2015 to its Teacher of the Year.

The award includes $3,000 for school use under the teacher’s supervision for educational purposes, and $3,000 for personal use by the teacher. The winner also will receive an expense-paid trip for two to the convention to receive the award. Additionally, for the first time this year, each of five finalists also will receive a $500 cash award.

Entries must be submitted by December 1, 2014. To learn more, see

Earth Science Week Closes
With Day of Archaeology

Earth Science Week 2014 reaches its climax with International Archaeology Day on Saturday, October 18. The event is a celebration of archaeology and the thrill of discovery!

Every October, the Archaeological Institute of America (AIA) - a new Earth Science Week partner - and archaeological organizations across the United States, Canada, and elsewhere present archaeological programs and activities for people of all ages and interests. Whether it is a family-friendly archaeology fair, a guided tour of a local archaeological site, a simulated dig, a lecture or a classroom visit from an archaeologist, the interactive, hands-on International Archaeology Day programs provide the chance to indulge your inner “Indiana Jones.”

Check out AIA’s map of events, the ArchaeoMadness calendar, and other educational resources on the International Archaeology Day website ( In addition, see the “What Will Survive?” learning activity in this year’s Earth Science activity Calendar, included in the Earth Science Week 2014 Toolkit (
The American Geosciences Institute is a nonprofit federation of 50 geoscientific and professional associations that represents more than 250,000 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, resiliency to natural hazards, and interaction with the environment. For contact information, please visit

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