EARTH SCIENCE WEEK UPDATE
American Geosciences Institute
Vol. 17, No. 2: February 2019
IN THIS ISSUE…
• Independent Study Details Earth Science Week Success
• ExxonMobil, AGI Offer Training Opportunities
• NOAA Boosts Teaching About Oceans, Atmosphere
• Help NGWA Promote Groundwater Awareness
• SSSA Offers Riches of Soil Science Education
• AAPG Offers Access to Distinguished Lecturers
• EARTH Magazine Available for Members and Schools
• AGI Site Helps You Explore ‘Critical Issues’ in the Geosciences
• Upcoming CLEAN Network Professional Development Webinars
Earth Science Week succeeded in engaging education audiences and the public in geoscience experiences in 2018, according to an independent evaluation recently completed by PS International. Comparing participation last year and plans for the next year, 99 percent of survey respondents said they anticipate either increasing or maintaining level participation.
A large majority of participants (92 percent) once again said Earth Science Week offers opportunities for teaching and promoting Earth science that they wouldn’t have otherwise. Participants commented on the “new information” and “teacher Kits.”
Similarly, 90 percent said program resources and activities are “very” or “somewhat” important to educating students and others about Earth science. “The ESW resources in the teaching toolkits are wonderful resources,” remarked one participant.
Eighty-seven percent rated the program’s overall usefulness as “excellent” or “good.” When respondents were asked to rate 15 key items from the Earth Science Week 2018 Toolkit, all were rated “very useful” or “useful” by strong majorities of participants. Online offerings received similarly high marks. To learn more, see Earth Science Week 2018 Highlights, coming soon at http://www.earthsciweek.org/highlights.
ExxonMobil Exploration and AGI will be holding their annual K-8 Earth Science/STEM Teacher Leadership Academy in Houston, Texas, July 7-12, 2019.
The academy provides teachers with Earth science content, hands-on activities, resources and field experiences that they can use with their students in the classroom and with their colleagues in professional development settings. This year, the academy has space for 30 participants and encourages participation in teams of two or more educators.
Learn more online at https://www.americangeosciences.org/education/k-12-professional-development-programs. Scroll down on the webpage to “Earth Science Teacher Leadership Academy K-8.”
Science supervisors and principals are encouraged to nominate teachers soon. Please send names and e-mail contact information for nominees to AGI’s Juliet Crowell at firstname.lastname@example.org. Nominees will be sent an online application form and given instructions on how to complete the application process. The review of completed applications will begin in April.
The U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) promotes education about oceanic and atmospheric science - and not only during Earth Science Week! NOAA offers resources and opportunities for students and teachers all year long.
On the NOAA Education Resources site you’ll find teaching tools and materials on oceans and coasts, climate, weather and atmosphere, marine life, freshwater, and other special topics. The “Water Cycle” page, for instance, offers multimedia resources, lessons and activities, real-world data, background information, and career profiles of water science professionals.
The portal similarly provides a wealth of resources on a wide variety of subjects. Whether you’re looking for science-based news coverage of recent extreme weather events or a social networking link to reinforce learning activities, NOAA is your source for oceanic and atmospheric science education resources.
National Groundwater Awareness Week (March 10-16) will shed light on one of the world’s most important resources - groundwater. Groundwater is essential to the health and wellbeing of humanity and the environment, according to the National Groundwater Association.
To learn more about National Groundwater Awareness Week, visit the Groundwater Fundamentals page at https://www.ngwa.org/what-is-groundwater/About-groundwater. For additional educational activities and resources in your state, visit https://www.ngwa.org/connect-with-your-state/State-Resources.
Over 6,000 members strong, the Soil Science Society of America (SSSA) is a scientific organization that aims to support geoscience teaching and learning about soils.
This AGI member society provides online educational resources tailored for teachers and for students. Included are lessons, activities, fun facts, sites of interest organized by soil topic and grade level, and soil definitions for the novice soil scientist.
You can also visit the online version of “Dig It,” an SSSA-sponsored exhibition on soil from the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of Natural History. The exhibit includes interactive displays, hands-on-models, videos, and monoliths representing soils from each state, territory, as well as the District of Columbia. Check online for viewing times.
With members ranging from professional geologists and corporate executives to students and academics, the American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG) has plenty to offer Earth science educators. AAPG, a longtime AGI member society and a major Earth Science Week partner, aims to foster scientific research and promote the science of geology.
AAPG’s Distinguished Lecturers program, for example, allows colleges, universities, and geological societies to arrange for a geoscientist to make a presentation. For details, see http://www.aapg.org/career/training/in-person/distinguished-lecturers.
Did you know that digital subscriptions to EARTH Magazine are free for members of AGI member societies and associate societies? Schools can also sign up for a free year (six issues) of EARTH Magazine in digital forms (PDF, ePub, and Mobi). Sign up today for access to hundreds of articles about your favorite geoscience topics at https://digital.earthmagazine.org/.
AGI’s Critical Issues website provides useful information on issues including energy, climate, water, natural hazards, and mineral resources. Designed as a source of decision-ready information on state and local issues, this web portal is growing steadily in popularity among students, educators, and the science-interested public. Here are a few of our favorite pages:
- Interactive map of water levels for major reservoirs in California.
- Geoscience In Your State – a factsheet for each U.S. state covering water, mineral resources, energy, natural hazards, and employment in geoscience professions.
- Present Day Climate Change information and accompanying factsheet.
Explore the geosciences on the Critical Issues website.
CLEAN has scheduled the spring series of regular professional development webinars, aiming to help teachers learn how to use the CLEAN collection to teach about climate and energy. CLEAN also offers webinars designed to help teachers use the site to address NGSS and implement 3D learning through units designed with CLEAN resources.
Upcoming webinars include:
- February 28 at 6:30pm ET: Introduction to CLEANet.org
- March 4 at 6pm ET: Teaching about Climate and Energy with CLEANet.org
- March 13 at 6pm ET: Create your Own Climate and Energy Units with CLEANet.org
- March 19 at 6:30pm ET: How CLEANet.org supports NGSS and 3-D Learning for Climate and Energy Education
- March 25 at 6pm ET: Teaching Climate Principle 6: Focus on How Human Activities are Impacting the Climate System
Visit the CLEAN Network site to register today.
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 http://www.earthsciweek.org/contact . To subscribe to this newsletter, visit http://www.earthsciweek.org/newsletter and submit your email address.