Earth Science Week Update July 2019

American Geosciences Institute
Vol. 17, No. 7: July 2019


Geologic Map Day: Celebrate on October 18

On Friday, October 18, 2019, you are invited to join in the celebration of the eighth annual Geologic Map Day! The final major event for the school week of Earth Science Week 2019, Geologic Map Day will promote awareness of the study, uses, and importance of geologic mapping for education, science, business, and a variety of public policy concerns.

The event will enable students, teachers, and the wider public to tap into educational activities, print materials, online resources, and other opportunities for participation. Check out the Geologic Map Day poster included in the Earth Science Week 2019 Toolkit.

The poster provides maps, plus step-by-step instructions for related classroom activities encouraging students to explore ways that geologic mapping is made accessible to broad audiences, including those with color blindness. Join us in celebrating the Earth Science Week theme of "Geoscience Is for Everyone" on Geologic Map Day 2019.

Geologic Map Day is hosted by the U.S. Geological Survey, the Association of American State Geologists, the National Park Service, the Geological Society of America, and NASA in partnership with AGI. Additional resources for learning about geologic maps can be found on the Geologic Map Day web page.

View 'Why Earth Science' Online With Your Student

AGI's amazing "Why Earth Science" video is now available for free viewing online on YouTube and TeacherTube. For an exciting introduction to the geosciences, you can't do better than this six-minute clip, featuring eye-popping cinematography and computer-animation highlights from AGI's "Faces of Earth" mini-series on The Science Channel.

The video, which won a Silver Telly Award, is ideal for illustrating the importance of Earth science to not only students, but also local education decision makers who may be weighing the subject's place in your curriculum. View the clip on YouTube or on TeacherTube.

'Visiting Geoscientists' Make Impact on Students

Are you an Earth scientist who wants to help educate young people about the field, but you're just not sure how to start? Check out "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.

Professional geoscientists such as geologists and geophysicists who visit schools and lead field trips, especially at the K-12 level, provide unique enrichment opportunities, based on their education, experience, and firsthand knowledge of the workplace. Whether you work in a resource or environmental company, a research institute, a state or federal agency, or a college or university, you can make a difference.

Contact a local school and plan now for a visit in the fall. The handbook offers strategies and resources. Various sections discuss how students learn science best, issues in Earth science education, recommendations for volunteers, sample activities, and more. To download the handbook, see "Visiting Geoscientists."

AGI Site Helps You Explore 'Critical Issues'

The Critical Issues Program of AGI offers a potential informational resource for use in your classroom lessons and instructional planning. The Critical Issues website provides introductory information on issues at the intersection of geoscience and society, such as energy, climate, water, natural hazards, and mineral resources.

Users can start with our geoscience basics and primer pages, which offer summaries of topics like drought, mining, renewable energy, and earthquakes. These introductory pages provide links to more detailed information in a variety of formats, from frequently asked questions, interactive maps, webinars, and case studies to a database of in-depth research publications.

Explore the Critical Issues website. And consider whether the information at the site is appropriate for your students, perhaps by using the "informational text" strategies prepared by AGI's Center for Geoscience and Society.

Support a Global Headquarters for Geoscience

You can help AGI, the organizer of Earth Science Week, to build a better world through the power of geoscience.

The geoscience community requires a central headquarters that is equipped for the 21st century. AGI embarked on a much-needed, ambitious renovation project in 2017, and we achieved successful completion in 2018.

We recognized renovation as an opportunity to fortify our facility with state-of-the-art technology, essential resources, and collaborative spaces to advance the important work of staff, geoscience professionals, and the broader community. Here, geoscience groups are invited to use the facilities to further their essential work.

Your vital contribution helps to ensure that our transformed facility fosters community, prioritizes sustainability, and leads innovation. Learn how you can support the AGI Keystone Fund.

Free App Explores Ice, Sea Level Change

Why does sea level change at different rates? How has it changed in the past? Who will be at risk from more extreme weather and sea level rise in the future? Geoscientists often hear questions like these from students, government officials, and the media.

A free app called "Polar Explorer: Sea Level" lets users explore a series of maps of the planet, from the deepest trenches in the oceans to the ice at the poles. See how ice, the oceans, precipitation, and temperatures have changed over time and listen as scientists explain what you're seeing and why.

"We wanted to make climate data accessible and engaging to the public, for everyone from students to interested adults," says Margie Turrin, education coordinator at Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, who designed the app with Bill Ryan, Robin Bell, Dave Porter, and Andrew Goodwillie. "The data is displayed in interactive maps with just enough guidance to support independent exploration." Learn more online.

EPA Site Boosts Environmental Education

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) offers a rich collection of education resources to boost public awareness and knowledge about environmental issues. The aim, according to EPA's Environmental Education website, is to provide the public with "the necessary skills to make informed decisions and take responsible action."

The site features lesson plans, videos, project ideas, teacher training, funding opportunities, and information on children's health and awards for students and educators. To learn more, visit Learning and Teaching About the Environment.

Engage Students With Geoscience Visualizations

How various kinds of learners become excited about the study of geoscience? For many students, visualizations can be an effective way of exploring "Geoscience Is for Everyone," the theme of Earth Science Week 2019 (October 13-19).

Visualizations are graphic depictions of data. Using technologies ranging from on-site data collection to satellite-based remote sensing, geoscientists investigate Earth systems. Additionally, geoscientists display their findings in visual media such as charts, diagrams, illustrations, videos, computer-generated animations, and 3D-printed creations.

Now you can explore human interaction with the natural world through "Visualizing Earth Systems," a recent addition to the Earth Science Week website. The page links you to dozens of recommended visualizations dealing with energy, climate, minerals, water, hazards, and other topics linked to humanity's relationship with the planet.

Visit Visualizing Earth Systems. In addition, the page links you to overviews of these topics provided by AGI's Critical Issues Program, featuring additional information on timely topics. Offers News and Info on Earth Science, a major Earth Science Week partner, provides a variety of geoscience materials including daily Earth science news, maps, an online dictionary of Earth science terms, and information on geoscience careers.

Also on are resources for teachers, including links to lesson plans from major Earth science organizations such as the U.S. Geological Survey, the Geological Society of America, and NASA. View the teacher page.

Online Videos Show 'Faces of Climate Change'

Three short online videos depict the dramatic changes in Alaska's marine ecosystems through interviews with scientists and Alaska natives. The videos were produced by the Center for Ocean Sciences Education Excellence (COSEE) Alaska, the Alaska Sea Grant program, the Alaska Marine Conservation Council, and the Alaska Ocean Observing System.

View "Faces of Climate Change - Introduction." Or view more Alaska COSEE Resources.

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 online. To subscribe to this newsletter, visit online and submit your email address.