Earth Science Week Update September 2016

American Geosciences Institute
Vol. 14, No. 9: September 2016
* Watch New Webcast on Earth Science Week 2016
* Earth Science Week 2016 Coming Soon: Get Ready!
* Find New Resources at National Fossil Day Online
* Less Than a Month to Enter Earth Science Week Contests
* Esri Offers GeoInquiries for Earth Science
* Plan for Upcoming Earth Observation Day
* New Website Locates Geoheritage in Your State
* National Natural Landmarks Offer Education Resource
* 'America's Geologic Heritage' Wins Design Award
* Earth Science Week Toolkit Brings Vision to Education
* Shine a Media Spotlight on Your Great Activities
* AGI's District Visit Days Link You to Lawmakers
* Geoscience for Everyone Day: We Want You
* SciFest Dubai Promotes STEAM Education

Watch New Webcast on
Earth Science Week 2016

Go online today to view a new webcast detailing resources, events, and opportunities available through Earth Science Week, the annual worldwide celebration of the geosciences! Find the "Get Involved: Earth Science Week 2016" webcast online now for viewing at your convenience.

This free webcast, narrated by AGI's Brendan Soles, provides an overview of learning activities, instructional materials, career resources, upcoming events, networking opportunities, contests, videos, and other programs available through Earth Science Week. The tutorial provides a tour of online links and resources for more information.

The roughly five-minute webcast focuses on Earth Science Week 2016 (October 9-15), which celebrates the theme "Our Shared Geoheritage." To view the webcast, visit . In addition, see webcasts describing the Earth Science Week contests, special days during the week, and AGI's geoscience teacher award competition.

Earth Science Week 2016
Coming Soon: Get Ready!

Now is the time to make plans for Earth Science Week, taking place October 9-15, 2016. The 19th annual Earth Science Week will celebrate the theme "Our Shared Geoheritage" with a wide range of exciting activities, programs, and resources. All are designed to promote awareness of the ways that science helps us understand, appreciate, and make the most of our geoscience heritage, or, as it is commonly known, "geoheritage."

Pitch in to teach young people about Earth system science. Conduct activities described on the Earth Science Week website at . For more ideas, see recommendations at .

This year's event is shaping up to reach even more people than last year's audience of over 50 million. For the past 19 years, AGI has organized Earth Science Week to foster public and professional awareness of the status of Earth science in education and society. To learn more, visit the event website at .

Find New Resources at
National Fossil Day Online

To help you prepare for the sixth annual National Fossil Day (October 12) during Earth Science Week 2016, the National Park Service offers a website full of educational resources and information designed specifically for students and teachers ( ).

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 ( ).

Also see the site's Useful Resources and Links page, which features a trove of educator resources ( ). The activities page has additional fun and educational things to do ( ).

Lastly, it is never too early to send your event information. Get the news out by using the event information form ( ).

Less Than a Month to Enter
Earth Science Week Contests
With entries due near the end of Earth Science Week - Friday, October 14 - science students and enthusiasts across the country are busy completing submissions for the Earth Science Week 2016 essay, visual arts, photography, and video contests. Submit yours soon!
The photography contest, open to all ages, focuses on "Our Heritage in Earth Systems." Open to students in grades K-5, the visual arts contest is titled "Seeing Earth Heritage." Students in grades 6-9 are eligible to enter the essay contest: "Sharing and Caring for Our Geoheritage." Focusing on one geoheritage site, essays of up to 300 words should explain why it is designated and managed the way it is.

In addition, AGI invites teams of educators and students to enter its new "One Shared Place" contest. Each team will submit a 30- to 90-second original video informing viewers about an outdoor place that is special in terms of geoheritage and geoscience. All eligible entries must be submitted through the official entry website ( ). A contest overview is provided in a brief One Shared Place Introduction video available via social media and YouTube ( ).

For the contests, entries may be submitted any time up to the Friday of Earth Science Week, October 14, 2016. These contests allow both students and the general public to participate in the celebration, learn about Earth science, and compete for prizes. To learn more about these contests, including how to enter, visit .

Esri Offers GeoInquiries
For Earth Science

A long-time Earth Science Week partner, Esri recently launched a new online educational resource: GeoInquiries for Earth Science. These free, bite-sized activities make use of topical web maps and lessons tied to standards and key textbooks. The activities also offer a pathway to go beyond them with free ArcGIS Online school licenses.

GeoInquiries are designed to be fast and easy-to-use instructional resources that incorporate advanced web mapping technology. Each 15-minute activity in a collection is intended to be presented by the instructor from a single computer/projector classroom arrangement. No installation, fees, or logins are necessary to use these materials and software.

GeoInquiries are also available for geography, history, and environmental science. To learn more about GeoInquiries, please visit .

Plan for Upcoming
Earth Observation Day

Earth Science Week 2016 will mark the first time ever that you can take part in Earth Observation Day during the weeklong celebration of the geosciences! Previously celebrated at other times of the year, Earth Observation Day (Tuesday, October 11, 2016) aims to engage students and teachers in remote sensing as an exciting and powerful educational tool.

The event is a STEM educational outreach event of AmericaView and its partners. AmericaView is a nationwide partnership of remote sensing scientists who support the use of Landsat and other public domain remotely sensed satellite data through applied remote sensing research, K-12 and higher STEM education, workforce development, and technology transfer.

For lessons and activities by AmericaView and other organizations, as well as additional Earth Observation Day resources, please see .

New Website Locates
Geoheritage in Your State

Did you know that in the roughly 30-mile-wide Rio Grande Rift, running from Colorado through New Mexico, the continental crusting is thinning as it stretches to the east and west at a rate of a few millimeters per year? Or that West Virginia, Kentucky, and Ohio preserve fossil-rich reefs, remnants life that once thrived in shallows seas spanning eastern North America throughout the Paleozoic?

To make the concept of geoheritage come alive for your students, use the Our Shared Geoheritage page of the Earth Science Week website to unearth the geologic history of your state. Supporting the Earth Science Week 2016 theme of "Our Shared Geoheritage," this new page on the program website also links educators and students to recommended resources including downloadable reports, articles, blogs, geoheritage locations, and learning activities.

To view "Geoheritage by State," see . To learn more about "Our Shared Geoheritage," visit .

National Natural Landmarks
Offer Education Resource

The National Park Service's National Natural Landmarks (NNL) program - which recognizes and encourages the conservation of sites that contain outstanding biological and geological resources - provides teachers and students with opportunities to study and experience geoheritage in their part of the country.

NNL sites are designated by the U.S. Secretary of the Interior for their condition, illustrative character, rarity, diversity, and value to science and education. Many of the nearly 600 sites across the country have been given this designation for their significant geological resources. Each site tells a piece of the story of the nation's natural history, from various geological processes to characteristic landforms to evidence of plants and animals that lived thousands to millions of years ago.

To view "It's About Time," a learning activity focusing on NNL, visit . To find out more about the NNL program, see .

'America's Geologic Heritage'
Wins Design Award
A prestigious American Graphic Design Award recently was presented by the magazine Graphic Design USA to Angela Terry Design for the "America's Geologic Heritage: An Invitation to Leadership," published jointly by AGI, organizer of Earth Science Week, and the National Park Service, a longtime program partner.
The publication, for which AGI Outreach Manager Geoff Camphire wrote and served as project leader, synthesizes recent concepts that have been developed in the global geologic resource conservation community and puts them into context for a uniquely American approach to geologic heritage conservation ( ).

"The book's design underscores the great beauty and irreplaceable value of our geologic heritage," says Camphire. "This recognition is especially timely as Earth Science Week prepares to celebrate the 2016 theme of 'Our Shared Geoheritage' in October, even as the National Park Service celebrates its centennial." To learn more about the publication, see .
Earth Science Week Toolkit
Explores Geoscience Heritage
Each year, Earth Science Week focuses on a new topic in its toolkit of materials for educators. Choose the kit that best fits your instructional needs. Concentrating on the theme "Our Shared Geoheritage," the 2016 kit includes:
* 12-month school-year activity calendar, suitable for hanging
* New Earth Science Week poster, including a learning activity
* NASA DVD and material on Earth observation, energy, and more
* National Park Service posters on geologic and air resources
* Ecology DVD and more from Howard Hughes Medical Institute
* UNAVCO ruler on Earth's shape, gravity, and rotation
* Mining, exploration, and reclamation resources from SME
* Material on energy science from Student Energy
* AmericaView Memory Game poster (Earth Observation Day)
* Exploring Earth and Space coloring book by AGU
* Geologic timescale bookmark from AIPG
* Dinosaur worksheet from the Bureau of Land Management
* Esri flyer on Topography and Our National Heritage
* Geologic Map Day poster with geologic mapping activity
* Climate worksheet from American Meteorological Society
* Brochures, bookmarks, fact sheets, postcards, and more

Additional kits address other topics: "Visualizing Earth Systems" explores visualizations. "Earth's Connected Systems" illuminates natural systems' interactions. "Mapping Our World" covers maps. "Discovering Careers in the Earth Sciences" targets careers. "Our Ever-Changing Earth" focuses on change processes.
Each kit contains materials to help you prepare for Earth Science Week (October 9-15, 2016) and teach Earth science all year long. For ordering, special shipping, bulk order discounts, and more information, visit or phone AGI Publications at 703-379-2480.

Shine a Media Spotlight
On Your Great Activities
Energy! Climate! Natural disasters! Jobs! Earth science is breaking news. Educators can take advantage of journalists' interest in geoscience to promote awareness of local Earth Science Week activities. Here are five effective strategies:
* Plan a special event to draw attention to your Earth Science Week activities. Conduct an investigation or experiment, invite a prominent geoscientist to talk with students, host a ceremony or a banquet, stage an event with a nearby museum or science center, give awards to volunteers, or honor geoscience enthusiasts who make a difference.
* Prepare a press release to alert the media about your Earth Science Week activities. Answer important questions, such as who, what, where, when, and why. Include data and quotes from key players. Provide contact information for followup. Print the release on your letterhead and fax it to editors and reporters at least three days before the event.
* Be persistent in pitching your story to local news organizations. Besides noting the "hook" of Earth Science Week, show how your activities address issues that are urgent, timely, and relevant to the community. Write a brief, compelling query letter to the appropriate editor at each media outlet. Follow up with a phone call and email.
* Write letters to the editor for print in local newspapers and magazines. You might respond to a recent geoscience-related article with a letter to the editor. If possible, schedule a meeting with the editorial board. Or instead of a letter, perhaps write an opinion editorial, or "op-ed," to cite concerns and recommend solutions.
* Use available Earth Science Week materials in promoting awareness. In the Earth Science Week Toolkit and on the event website are print and electronic materials - poster, calendar, logo, and more - that you can use to "brand" your activity. Link your local activity to the larger national celebration to emphasize its significance. For more ideas, see .
AGI's District Visit Days
Link You to Lawmakers

Want to talk with your congressional representative about the importance of the geosciences? Meet with your senator or representative in your local area during Earth Science Week, October 1-31, 2016!

AGI encourages participants to talk with lawmakers while they are in their home districts to let them know how Earth science is relevant - at the local, national, and global levels - to issues such as natural hazards, resources, energy, the economy, and the environment.

AGI and partner geoscience organizations offer materials to help you contact your legislators and explain the importance of geoscience understanding. To learn more about District Visits, please visit .

Geoscience for Everyone
Day: We Want You
Join the Earth Science Week team in encouraging everyone - including women, minorities, and people with a range of abilities - to explore geoscience careers on "Geoscience for Everyone Day," Thursday, October 13, 2016. If you're an educator, invite a geoscientist to speak in your classroom. If you're a geoscientist, visit a school or volunteer at a science center. Organize a scout event, lead a field trip, or hold a special "Take Your Child to Work Day." Open a young person's eyes to the world of Earth science.
In doing so, you'll be supporting the efforts of AGI Member Societies such as the Association for Women Geoscientists and the National Association of Black Geoscientists in raising awareness of the remarkable opportunities available to all young people in the Earth sciences. To learn more about Geoscience for Everyone Day, go to .
Are you a geoscientist who's not sure where to start? See "Visiting Geoscientists: An Outreach Guide for Geoscience Professionals," a handbook co-produced by AGI and the American Association of Petroleum Geologists' Youth Education Activities Committee. You can provide unique enrichment opportunities, based on your education and experience. To download the handbook, see .
SciFest Dubai Promotes
STEAM Education
SciFest Dubai is a festival to promote creativity, critical thinking, innovation, and STEAM education, including geoscience education. In addition to organizing the annual Dubai Science Festival, SciFest Dubai also promotes a public understanding of science through numerous workshops, think tanks, projects, conferences, community initiatives, innovative curricula, and radio shows.

Over the past two years, the Dubai Science Festival has touched thousands of participants and hundreds of thousands of social media followers. The festival is supported by top global scientists, thinkers, and futurists, including Steven Pinker, David Deutsch, Dan Dennet, Kevin Russel, Simon Singh, and Jason Silva.

The 2016 Science Festival takes place November 1-7, 2016, at Mohammed bin Rashid Academic Centre, D3 Dubai Design District, Children's City, and various other schools, universities, and science venues in the city. Keynote speaker Michael Shermer is a science writer, historian of science, founder of The Skeptics Society, and editor-in-chief of Skeptic magazine. To learn more, see .

The American Geosciences Institute is a nonprofit federation of 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 .