DLESE - Resources of Interest
Contributed by the DLESE community in 2006
Each month we present one or more resources that a community member has suggested for inclusion into the library. Your contributions are what make DLESE a community-owned project. Please do contribute by suggesting your favorite sites. More about selecting the Resource of interest.
Pulse of the Planet features two-minute sound portraits of Planet Earth that track the rhythms of nature, culture, and science worldwide, and blend interviews and extraordinary natural sound. Pulse of the Planet is broadcast from over 300 public and commercial stations around the world and on the Voice of America and the Armed Forces Radio Network. In addition to the sound clips and podcasts there are associated feature and seasonal stories describing the ways that scientists and the public interact with their environment. Sample audio programs are also available in spanish language through Pulso del Planeta.
Daylight Saving Time gives us the opportunity to enjoy sunny summer evenings by moving our clocks an hour forward in the spring. Yet, the implementation of Daylight Saving Time has been fraught with controversy since Benjamin Franklin first conceived of the idea. At the age of 78, in a moment of whimsy, Benjamin Franklin wrote An Economical Project, a discourse on the thrift of natural versus artificial lighting. Over two centuries later, nations around the world use a variation of his concept to conserve energy and more fully enjoy the benefits of daylight. This website explains many aspects of Daylight Saving Time (DST) around the world, including when it begins and ends.
Are you seeking a K-12 professional development opportunity that will enhance your qualifications, competency, and self-confidence in integrating Earth system science, climate, and global change your science classroom? The National
Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) offers a suite of distance learning courses that build upon our face-to-face professional development workshops. Climate Discovery is a series of six-week courses for middle and high school educators.
The course offerings include:
Each year, Earth Science Week focuses on a different facet of earth science to help people gain a better understanding and appreciation of the natural world. This site describes how classrooms can integrate Earth Science Week into their curriculum including ways to involve the community, contests, and grade-level appropriate activities.
This year's theme is "Be a citizen scientist". What does it mean to be a citizen scientist? Real people collecting data, observing, and testing. A citizen scientist is YOU involved in real science and research! Find more ideas about how you and others can become scientifically literate citizens and get involved in Earth Science Week 2006.
Teaching Tip from Intermediate Elementary Teacher
Recent debate over the status of Pluto as a planet, (or not as it was decided by the International Astronomical Union) has turned many eyes to the sky this month. Extend this scientific news event by bringing the stars and planets into the classroom using Stellarium; free software that renders realistic views of the sky in real time and in 3D. Users can depict the sky at their own locations, at various times, and show grids, constellation names, and constellation art. An interactive feature allows users to click on an object and access information about it in a pop-up window. It is like a planetarium for your computer. Download and install to Mac or PC (25MB). The Open Astronomy Curricula offers lessons for projector systems, including those that use Stellarium, but the software can also be used directly from your school computer.
Recent Earth events have kept Indonesia in the news, with volcanoes, earthquakes and tsunamis ravaging the region. Mount Karangetang is an active volcano on the island of Siau, and erupted twice in the month of July, 2006. Information on recent activity is available at Volcano World, including a link to a Satellite view of the mountain (requires Google Earth). Indonesia is the world's largest archipelago and is part of the dynamic tectonic plates that comprise the "Ring of Fire". Planet Diary offers an inqury-focused lesson plan to engage your students in learning about volcanoes and plate tectonics. See specific links to more educational resources on earthquakes, tsunamis, volcanoes, and more.
Windows Into Wonderland, from the National Park Service, takes visitors on a series of electronic field trips (eTrips) into Yellowstone National Park. Animations, illustrations, and video footage reveal Yellowstone as you’ve never seen it before! The currently featured eTrip is "Yellowstone Exposed: Mysteries in the Living Laboratory." Each eTrip is equipped with curricular materials for teachers and an Ask an Expert area that provides an archive of questions and answers. Many of the 15 eTrips (e.g."To Eat or Be Eaten." ) have won awards. eTrips are available with and without audio and video to accommodate most internet connections. Designed for middle school students, it is appropriate for general audiences.
Teaching Issues and Experiments in Ecology is a peer reviewed, web-based collection of ecological educational materials by the Ecological Society of America (ESA) . TIEE is a resource for busy ecology faculty who are looking for new ways to reach their undergraduate students, or who perhaps want to learn more about teaching and learning. There are three sections - Experiments, Issues, and Teaching. Experiments are for lab sections of courses, and Issues can be used in lecture, lab, and for homework, while the Teaching section focuses on student-active teaching and learning strategies. All of the TIEE materials include background information on the topic addressed, instructions for students, and notes to faculty. There are many links from both Experiments and Issues to the Teaching section which includes web-based resources, essays, and tutorials.
Our primary energy sources today are fossil fuels, which are being depleted at an alarming rate. In addition to the cost and supply issues, scientists have long warned of the environmental damage caused by burning fossil fuels. Exploring Alternative Energy Sources is a new lesson in DLESE on fossil fuel depletion and renewable energy that involves students in class discussion, research, data analysis, and a simulation activity. Students create a project that teaches others about alternative/renewable energy sources using a model, experiment, diagram, or interactive/multimedia display. This lesson plan comes from the classroom resources of PBS Teacher Source: Science and Technology where you can search for additional lesson plans and activities for K-12 science classrooms.
National Environmental Education Week is April 16-22, with a goal of enhancing the educational impact of Earth Day, creating a full week of educational preparation, learning, and activities in K-12 classrooms, nature centers, zoos, museums, and aquariums. In preparation for this, the AskNSDL service is seeking to grow the base of experts who answer library user questions. Scientists, graduate students, junior and senior undergraduates, librarians, educators, and other experts can sign up to answer questions related to specified areas of science, mathematics, technology, or educational resources. These experts are encouraged to share their knowledge with those who send inquiries to AskNSDL during National EE Week and beyond. It is easy to register as an expert and requires only as much time as you prefer to commit in responding to the questions that you choose to answer. To register, go to AskNSDL and click on For Experts.
Students and families are invited to participate in a worldwide campaign March 22-31 to observe and record the magnitude of visible stars as a means of measuring light pollution in a given location. GLOBE at Night is an easy observation and reporting activity with a goal of collecting 5,000 observations. Information for parents, students and teachers details the data collection activity, and participants can subscribe to the GLOBE at Night mailing list to receive updates and results. The site includes background information and interactive simulations that show the effects of light pollution on the night sky, and finding the constellation Orion.
(See announcement in DLESE News and Opportunities.)
MILAGRO is an exciting event taking place in Mexico City during March 2006. At MILAGRO scientists from around the world will be joining forces with Mexican colleagues to study pollution originating in Mexico City and follow it downwind to understand how megacities affect the regional and global atmosphere. The MILAGRO research campaign is funded jointly by the Mexican government, the US National Science Foundation, Department of Energy, and NASA. Windows to the Universe hosts the information portal to MILAGRO (in English and Spanish) providing background information about the purpose of the campaign, air pollution, transport effects, impacts on health and the environment, research projects underway in the campaign, as well as Field Reports from scientists, educators, and students participating in the project.
( See announcement in DLESE News and Opportunities.)
Teachers' Domain (www.teachersdomain.org) has just released its Earth and Space Science collection of classroom-ready resources and lesson plans. Lesson plans include detailed instructions and incorporate multimedia resources including material from public television such as NOVA and ZOOM, video and audio clips, interactives, images, and documents. Other collections address life and physical science, engineering and civil rights. (A quick, free registration is required to use the site.)
Educators! The K-12 email list (firstname.lastname@example.org) invites you to create and join discussions on a wide range of issues central to your work. Thomas McGuire (pictured exploring mysterious natural rock tracks on Racetrack Playa, CA.) shares resources and information on current ideas and events of interest to the group. Recent postings include a special price reduction extended to members of the DLESE K-12 email list for the award-winning critical thinking Video/DVD In Search of the Edge. The Rock Cycle Song (to the tune, Row Your Boat) was also posted. You are invited to join the K12 email list. This is a great opportunity to share ideas and resources, as well as discuss important issues of the times, with your peers.
Previous years' Resources of Interest: 2005 , 2004 , 2003 , 2002 , 2001 , 2000
The selection process for the Resource of interest considers the following factors, in order: