- My NESTA
- Teacher Resources
- PD Opportunities
- Join NESTA
- Contact Us
Are you planning to present at an upcoming NSTA Conference this Fall? If so, NESTA is offering our members a new service you may be interested in. If your session has already been accepted by NSTA, you are welcome to share information about the session through our website form at https://www.nestanet.org/cms/node/add/nsta-session. The form, for NESTA member use only (you will need to login as a member to access the form), will take information about the session at one of the three upcoming NSTA conferences this fall. Please only enter information if you have had your session accepted - submissions without a date, time, and room will not be accepted. By sharing information about your session through this form, your session will be listed as a NESTA-member session at NSTA, and information about it will be available online at the NESTA website.
The Geological Society of America located in Boulder, Colorado is seeking applications for the position of Program Officer - Teacher Advocate Program in the Education and Outreach Department. This position is responsible for the Teacher (K-12) programs within the organization which includes designing, planning, budgeting, project management, marketing and evaluation of the programs. It includes developing and presenting teacher resources and training both at conferences and online; seeking and obtaining sponsorship and grants for the programs; representing GSA meetings; responding to requests for information; coordinating major mail outs to schools annually; maintaining the GSA Education Web Site and using social media to market and extend programs; provide advice and materials to support educational uses of EarthCaching and EarthTrek and other Education & Outreach department activities.
Something to ponder from EARTH Magazine
EARTH explores in its July feature "Creationism Creeps into Mainstream Geology," how a field trip to Garden of the Gods in Colorado is an example of a new strategy from creationists to interject their ideas into mainstream geology: Creationists are leading field trips and presenting posters and talks at scientific meetings like the 2010 GSA Annual Meeting. According to this article the creationists avoid overtly stating anything truly contrary to mainstream science. And then, when the meeting is over, the creationist participants go home and proudly proclaim that mainstream science has accepted their ideas.
According to the author's of the article this is "a crafty way of giving credence to creationism, but the question mainstream geologists wrestle with is whether there is anything that the conveners of meetings and field trips can or should do to prevent this."
Read read this article to see what one scientist suggests should be done, and read other stories on topics such as what water officials are doing to try to get ahead of a declining snowpack in the West, how geophysical tools are helping remediation managers at Hanford and other nuclear cleanup sites, and why disasters such as the Japan earthquake and tsunami affect the economies of rich or poor countries disproportionately in the July issue. And for those middle school teachers who sometime wonder if our students are every paying attention, don't miss the story about the middle school student who uncovered an international mineral scandal.
These stories and many more can be found in the July issue of EARTH.
The Spring 2011 issue of Witness the Arctic has been published online and is available at: http://www.arcus.org/witness-the-arctic.
The feature article is entitled "Linking Inuit Knowledge and Scientific Understanding of Environmental Change: A Case Study in Wind Observations." It highlights National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) researcher Shari Gearheard's work with Inuit hunters and Elders documenting their knowledge and observations of local changes in the climate and environment. The direct link to the article is: http://www.arcus.org/witness-the-arctic/2011/2/article/1661.
Another highlight of this issue is an interview with Dr. Brendan P. Kelly, the new Deputy Director of NSF's Division of Arctic Sciences. The article is directly available at:http://www.arcus.org/witness-the-arctic/2011/2/article/1660.
This issue of Witness the Arctic also contains many other interesting articles and arctic news as well as a PDF version.
Many of our membership may be off for the summer – or taking advantage of some workshops or other professional development rather than taking a vacation. But your NESTA leadership works year around. We will be taking time during these next three months to plan for the many conferences that will be offered during the 2011-12 school year. If you have ever participated in NESTA events – workshops, lectures, rock raffle, or stopped by our booth – everything looks effortless. But that is because of the planning that goes into putting on these activities. And it takes a lot of people! So please don’t be shy about volunteering! Even on the day of the conference there may be something that we need extra help with. So please introduce yourself and offer to lend a hand.
Some of the events that the NESTA Board has been busy planning will be the NSTA regional conferences, GSA meeting in Minneapolis and AGU in San Francisco. We will be posting dates and NESTA events well in advance so that you can put us on your calendar.
This Spring we sent out an Earth and Space Science Educator Survey. The Board has been looking over your responses and will be planning accordingly. We also have been busy getting new NESTA State Affiliates.
Earth Science is always in the news. Whether it is a deadly tornado, devastating flooding, out of control wildfires, massive earthquakes and tsunamis, amazing space images, erupting volcanoes or powerful hurricanes, what we are teaching our students has immediate impact on their lives. Earth Science ROCKS!!!
Many of us are probably making summer vacation plans, and looking forward to a get away with our families this summer. Of course, as Earth and space science educators, many of us will probably be visiting locations where we will be taking pictures of mountains, lakes, rivers, rock outcrops, waterfalls, geysers, volcanoes, clouds, etc - the list of images that are related to the geosciences is endless. The photo shown here is one that I took at Arches National Park in Utah, near Moab at the end of May. If you do find yourself taking such pictures, please consider sharing them with NESTA by adding them to our image galleries on the website. Go to http://www.nestanet.org/cms/content/resources/submit, and click on "Upload an Image for NESTA Image Galleries" in the links below. Many of these pictures can help your colleagues, as they are working to help students.
Looking for reading in the content area for your Environmental Science or Earth Science classes? You might be interested in the latest issue of the American Psychologist (official publication of the American Psychological Association) as it is entirely devoted to the theme of Psychology and Global Climate Change. You can access the May-June 2011 issue to read abstracts of the articles. If you have access to a university library you can access the articles for no charge.
In order to better serve Earth and space science teachers, we have prepared an anonymous survey to gather information about your Earth and space science education needs and concerns, your satisfaction with NESTA's publications, programs and services, your satisfaction with Windows to the Universe, and your ideas about how we can serve you better. We would really like to get as may responses from NESTA members as possible! Please take a moment to complete this survey at your earliest convenience. You may receive notice about this survey from a variety of sources, but please be sure to only complete the survey once! Thanks so much for your time and effort!
The application form for a scientist/educator presenter team to participate in the AGU-NESTA Fall 2011 GIFT workshop is now available at AGU’s Education page at http://www.agu.org/education/ (see the call box on the right hand side). The application form will be available until 6 September 2011. Please forward this note to your colleagues who might be interested in presenting at the workshop. Please note that the GIFT workshop in being scheduled for December 5 and 6, 2011 during the Fall meeting.
Presented by the Astronomical Society of the Pacific (ASP) in Partnership with the American Geophysical Union and the Space Telescope Science Institute
July 30-August 3, 2011
Important deadlines - Late abstract proposals accepted
We invite all Grades 3-12 Educators to join the Will Steger Foundation on an Exploration of Minnesota’s Changing Climate at the Summer Institute August 11- 12, 2011.
This year's Institute will focus on the Will Steger Foundation’s new Environment and Natural Resources Trust Fund project: Minnesota's Changing Climate; Engaging Students in Environmental Stewardship Through Adventure Learning.
The Summer Institute will be held at the School of Environmental Studies in Apple Valley, MN. This year's Institute will Engage Students in Environmental Stewardship Through Adventure Learning. Participants in this year's Summer Institute are expected to use at least a portion of Minnesota's Changing Climate curriculum in their classroom. Participants will also be eligible for additional classroom support and resources. There is no cost for this year’s Institute and travel and accommodations may be available to those that apply. For more information and a link to the application please check simply follow this link.
La Nina is not to blame for this season's extreme weather, as we were once led to believe. Now the rash of severe storms/ tornadoes/floods/ winds and wildfires are thought to be the result of intense temperature gradients across the country which has caused "holding patterns" in the jet stream. Perhaps a contributing factor is global warming- graphs on NASA's climate web site show undeniable rises of carbon dioxide emissions in the atmosphere. All of this leads to the fact that we need more researchers to study complex Earth Science issues, and that's where we as classroom educators can help, both in educating our students (and their families) and in helping to inspire and prepare the next generation of research scientists.From the flooding great state of Montana I wish to welcome and introduce Rick Dees to the NESTA Board. Rick has recently been appointed to fill a two year vacancy as the North Central region Director. Rick brings enthusiasm and experience to the Board and we look forward to his contributions! As the solstice approaches and school concludes, I want to thank you all for what you do for Earth Science education, and encourage you to get outside and enjoy the Earth and sky in these next few months! I am taking some of my students on a short trip to Arizona in the a few weeks- maybe I will will see you at the Grand Canyon Star Party!
Vacations remind us that there are some places that are very special for Earth and Space Science across our beautiful country. I'm reminded of our effort to develop NESTA's List of Best Places for Earth and Space Science across the country. This notice has come out several times before, but we didn't have lots of takers, unfortunately. Hopefully, as your teaching demands decline in the coming month, you will find a few moments to share your ideas, before you leave for summer vacation yourself!
We would like to ask you, as a NESTA member (who by definition loves the geosciences), to share your favorite places in your state relevant to our field with other NESTA members. The following questions may help you think of the places we'd like to identify:
Please fill out an online form with which you can provide the name, location (either address or geographic coordinates), and a brief description of locations. Please remember to focus your responses on places that are within 500 miles of you, since for now we will rely on our distributed network to provide responses that cover the country. Don't forget to provide your name and e-mail, so we can acknowledge your contributions. Thanks so much, and we will keep you posted on this exciting project!
For those interested in natural history, there are few places quite as facinating as the Galapagos. The intention of this web site is to provide information on the Galapagos Islands to both scientists and non-scientists alike. Charles Darwin was the first naturalist/geologist to explore the Galapagos. He made many important observations of Galapagos geology and drew conclusions that remain valid today. Darwin was also fascinated by the remarkable and unique biota of the islands. His careful biological observations later led him to propose a theory, that of natural selection, that revolutionized the way scientists think of life. While the emphasis of this web site is on geology, Galapagos wildlife difficult to ignore, so you will find many images and observations on biology, as well as geology, on this site.
By Roberta Johnson on behalf of blog.sciencegeekgirl.com
When teaching, it’s crucial to know what your students tend to have difficulty with, so you can target your instruction to those topics.
The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) just released a nicely designed website called Science Assessment for identifying these common student difficulties with content in life science, physical science, Earth Science, and the nature of science. In the Fall, they’ll be adding some common difficulties with Climate Science. Unfortunately people need to register to see it, but there is no fee and the information is very timely and appropriate for middle school or high school teachers. I also think that science methods instructors and folks teaching introductory college science courses would benefit by signing-up and checking it out as well.
There are over 600 items gleaned from more than a decade of research and development by Project 2061. You can explore the main themes in each topic, the sub-topics associated with it, how students tend to do on assessments in this area, and their common conceptual difficulties. Based on this information you will have a new set of tools to aid in deigning your instruction to target those difficulties and helping students build a more accurate representation of the world.
Submitted by Richard Jones on behalf of James Ebert
The State University of New York College at Oneonta (SUNY Oneonta) has received a GEO-ED grant from NSF to expand Oneonta’s Earth Science Outreach Program (ESOP). Since 2005, over 550 high school students have earned college credit through ESOP for introductory geoscience courses (geology, meteorology, oceanography, astronomy) taught by local teachers in the students’ own schools. Credit earned through ESOP is transferrable to other colleges. Participation is open to any school in any state.
The major goals of the grant are to:
1) expand ESOP to as many schools as are interested,
2) assist other colleges in developing similar programs and
3) evaluate how effective ESOP is at recruiting college geoscience majors to help address the nation’s shortage of geoscience professionals.
A professional development workshop will be held August 15 to 18, 2011 on the SUNY Oneonta campus to assist teachers in developing proposals to participate in ESOP and to design curricula. Sessions will also include helpful hints on “selling” the program to school administrators. Room, board and travel expenses will be covered by the grant.
For more information regarding the workshop or if you would like to develop a similar program at a college or university, please contact Dr. James Ebert at email@example.com.
Do you need a refresher on the geology and formation of the Grand Canyon? This web site created by Bob Ribokas provides enough information to keep you and your students busy. If you are planning a trip this summer to the Canyon visit the home site that provides road logs and other useful information including links to The Human History associated with the canyon, maps, photos, and even a PDA version of the site to take with you on the road.
Planning a trip to California this summer or looking for some great links to unique geology? The check out The California Geotour an interactive index of Web pages of geologic field trip guides and related Web sites compiled by the California Geological Survey (CGS) for the benefit of all who have wondered about California's geologic features. We have listed Web pages that contain geologic information, including photographs, maps, text and directions for local natural features throughout the state. The Web pages have been developed by government agencies, geological organizations, professors, students, commercial enterprises, park districts, environmental groups, and those with a keen interest in the earth sciences.
The California Geotour index is organized by regions collectively named the Geomorphic Provinces of California. The geologic field trip guides are further grouped into general areas within each province. (Example: Basin and Range Province \ Death Valley Area). These areas are listed in geographical order from north to south within each geomorphic province.
No trip through cyberspace can begin to communicate the thrill of actually being at the Smith River. This multimedia journey will take you through one of the world's best exposures of oceanic lithosphere (ophiolite). Beginning in the mantle (peridotite) and working upward to pillow basalts and overlying sediments, This virtual field trip is intended to simply provide a glimpse of the river and share some of the spectacular outcrops investigated during field studies courses at College of the Redwoods.
Take Note Tonight, June 15, 2011 the first of two total lunar eclipses for the year takes place, the second will be on December 10, so you have a little time to plan for lessons and school activities for that one. This one is special because the Moon passes almost exactly in front of the center of the Earth's shadow.
For those of you able to observe tonight the total lunar eclipse starts 17:24 UTC (or 1:24 PM EDT) when the Moon hits the penumbral shadow of the Earth. More information regarding this eclipse and other eclipses can be found by visiting Total Lunar Eclipse NASA information link. This eclipse will not be visible from the US, however if you happen to be in Africa, and Central Asia you should see a great show. For other locations, the eclipse will be visible rising over South America, Western Africa, and Europe, and setting over Eastern Asia, and Australia.
Join the challenge to capture a photo of the Moon on that exact moment! Submit it at AstronomyLive. This total lunar eclipse belongs to Saros series 130 for those of you curious about this eclipse and others.
NASA has created a series of fantastic opportunities for students in grades 9-12 through the INSPIRE project. Students apply to become part of an online learning community that focuses on STEM topics for the school year 2011-2012 . A free laptop is provided if there is a demonstrated need. Once in the program, these students may compete for a variety of summer experiences which range from expense-paid trips to NASA facilities to eight-week paid summer internships. Applications for the 2011 – 2012 year will be accepted until June 30, 2011.
Looking for some educational materials for your Earth Science classroom? The Colorado Geological Survey (CGS) is a state government agency within the Department of Natural Resources whose mission is to:
Help reduce the impact of geologic hazards on the citizens of Colorado,
Promote responsible economic development of mineral and energy resources,
Provide geologic insight into water resources,
Provide avalanche safety training and forecasting, and
Provide geologic advice and information to a variety of constituencies...
It is in this context that the educator will find many materials. Simply follow the link to Education and you will find many materials ideal for students and teaching
The National Science Foundation, a federal agency that funds scientific research, has developed a site specifically designed with content targeted to K-12 educators!
Science 360 The Knowledge Network, has 24/7 science radio and 75+ shows and links to breaking science that shapes your world. You will also find short videos arranged by scientific discipline that showcase the latest wonders of science, engineering, technology and math.
Did you even know that the National Science Foundation produced short videos intended for use in our K-12 classrooms? These videos, created by the Office of Legislative and Public Affairs, highlight the cutting-edge science (and engineering and education research and social sciences) and scientists that NSF funds, but communicate at a level that students and teachers can understand. Most of the videos are five minutes or less and can be used as “bell-ringers” to stimulate interest, or as supplementary materials for topics you’re covering. They can also provide inspiration for your students and expose them to careers and ideas that you may not have time delve into deeply.
You can also sign-up to 'like" the new Learning 360 facebook page. Not a Facebook user? No worries! There’s an option to receive updates via email: go to http://feedburner.google.com/fb/a/mailverify?uri=NSFLearning360 This NSF Learning360 Facebook page, will be moderated (guarded) by a teacher to ensure only good, useful stuff gets posted. Everyday a new item will be highlighted, usually providing one of these short videos and links to more information for you to check out.
The Geological Survey of Alabama provides many services and resources for science educators. Educational outreach activities of the Survey include development and distribution of publications, making the survey the state's number one source of educational publications about the earth. Available products include brochures to field-trip guidebooks, slide sets, booklets, postcards, and posters, many of which are available at no charge. The Alabama Geological Survey also provides hands-on workshops for science teachers; geological field trips for teachers, classes, and the general public; classroom visits; presentations to groups as diverse as the Kiwanis Club and the Alabama Science Teachers Association; tours of the Survey facilities in Tuscaloosa; and many more opportunities.
One of the best resources, and one to use when reviewing Earth Science and Geology vocabulary is the Geological Hangman game...made my brain work.
Summer is finally here for most of you! This means some time to relax and perhaps visit some of those geologic areas you have been meaning to go to. In your travels, you may have the opportunity to collect minerals, rocks, or fossils from some interesting locales. If you find yourself with some extras that are in good shape, perhaps you would consider donating them to the Rock Raffle that NESTA holds each year. This is a good way to help some of our fellow teaching colleagues. Contact me, Joe Monaco and I will steer you in the right direction as to where to send your samples. Also, think about volunteering to help at the NSTA regionals coming this Fall. I will have more to say on that in the coming months.
We've started getting our acceptances for our events at NSTA in Hartford, Connecticut and New Orleans, Louisiana. This year, in addition to our signature Share-a-Thon and Rock Raffle at each Fall Conference, we are offering three additional workshops on topics of interest to Earth and space science educators. These additional workshops are entitled "Activities Across the Earth System", "Climate Change Classroom Toolkit", and "Let's Get Well Grounded". As we hear about acceptances, we are entering the events on our calendar, so check the Calendar to keep up with all our events. Remember, as a NESTA member, you can record events of interest to you in your own MyNESTA area on our website, for easy access!
You can earn your Master of Science degree via distance learning through the Teachers in Geosciences program from Mississippi State University. All of the core Earth science courses are taught online, and the curriculum is designed around the Earth science content that is most relevant to K–12 educators. The program concludes with an 8- to 10-day capstone field course that is taught during the summer at a variety of locations including Yellowstone/Grand Tetons, Western Washington State, the Sierra, Central Arizona, Upstate NY, Lake Superior, the Bahamas, and the Great Plains Storm Chase.
This 12-course, 36-credit-hour graduate program is designed to take as little as two years to complete and includes courses in meteorology, geology, planetary science, oceanography, hydrology, and environmental geoscience. The program has alumni in all 50 states, and all students qualify for in-state tuition rates.
Please visit our website at www.distance.msstate.edu/geosciences/TIG/index.html or contact Joy Bailey, firstname.lastname@example.org, for additional information.
Calendar of Events
From time to time, NESTA provides information about programs, services and resources provided by third-party organizations or providers which we believe is relevant to our membership. We provide this information as a service to our members. Inclusion of this information in any of our publications as content, links, or ads does not constitute or imply our endorsement of the accuracy or quality of the program, services and resources provided by third parties. NESTA specifically exempts itself from any and all liability for third-party programs, services and resources included in our publications, or accessible from links or ads in our publications.
Table of Contents
Submit Your Session
Witness the Arctic
Behind the Scenes
Summer Vacation Photos?
APA and Climate Change
2011 AGU-NESTA GIFT
ASP National Conference
Don't Blame the Dame!
Your Favorite ESS Places!
College in High School
Grand Canyon Explorer
The California Geotour
Smith River Geology
1st 2011 Lunar Eclipse
INSPIRE your Students!
NESTA at Fall NSTAs