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  Vol. 3, Issue 8, October, 2006 All issues index Submit newsletter content
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Resource of Interest

logo for NCAR Distance Learning coursesAre 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 into your science classroom? The National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) offers a suite of distance learning courses that build upon their 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:

  • Introduction to Earth's Climate (register now, begins October 30, 2006)
  • Earth System Science: A Climate Change Perspective (offered in 2007)
  • Understanding Climate Change Today

The first course, Introduction to Earth's Climate, focuses on such questions as: What's the difference between weather and climate? Is the climate REALLY changing? Has the climate changed in the past? How do we know? This online course experience features a high level of interactivity, tools for assessment, and effective community-building interactive technologies. Register today, the first course begins October 30. http://ecourses.ncar.ucar.edu/climate_change_101.html

Professional development opportunities: Oceans for Life 2006 Virtual Teacher Workshops, Colorado Science Conference for Professional Development

logo for Oceans for Life professional development activitiesThe College of Exploration will host a series of free, virtual teacher workshops on the topic of ocean exploration. The Oceans for Life 2006 virtual teacher workshops feature leading and emerging scientists presenting their research, explorations and discoveries in ocean areas off the United States and answering questions online about their work. The workshop also provides links to educational resources that can extend this research into the classroom. All registered participants will receive a free copy of the newest National Geographic map, 'From Sea to Shining Sea : Exploring America's Ocean Realms'. The workshop acts as a network in which educators can discuss how to use the information and materials in the classroom. Graduate credit is also available. Register now; the second workshop runs November 6 - 17, 2006.

logo for Colorado Science Conference for Professional DevelopmentThe Colorado Science Conference for Professional Development offers science educators the latest in content, pedagogy, and research to further their professional growth. Sessions include demonstrations of experiments, the use of technology in teaching science or scientific phenomena; hands-on workshops that actively engage the audience with materials; and presentations of innovative teaching ideas, results of research, and general science topics of interest (for example, alignment of instruction with Colorado's Science or Literacy Standards). Take advantage of this unique opportunity to collaborate with science education leaders and your peers. The conference will be held at the Denver Merchandise Mart November 16 and 17, 2006; deadline for registration is November 10.

DLESE Collections News: Environmental Visualization, Environmental Science Activities Collections, Stone Wall Initiative

Three new collections were recently accessioned into dlese.org.

The Environmental Visualization Collection provides access to images, animations and movies of atmospheric and natural hazards phenomena from satellite and other remote sensing technologies. The range of phenomena and topics currently includes Hurricane Katrina, El Niño/La Niña, sea surface temperatures, tsunami, topography and a mid-latitude cold front.
Browse the collection at: http://www.dlese.org/dds/histogram.do?group=subject&key=evc
See resources in the collection at: http://www.dlese.org/library/query.do?q=&s=0&ky=01p

logo for Environmental Science ActivitiesThe Environmental Science Activities for the 21st Century (ESA21) project provides multi-week activity modules around major topics in environmental science. The modules are designed to supplement environmental science courses with existing laboratory components or provide course activities for traditional and online courses that lack a laboratory component. The activities hybridize online and wet-lab exercises to take advantage of both formats and utilize existing, high-quality materials from the Internet. The modules emphasize lifestyle examination, ethical considerations, and critical analysis of individual contributions to large-scale regional and global impacts. This allows students to see their place in the environment and how lifestyle changes can facilitate greater environmental sustainability. Modules cover the atmosphere, basic science, biogeochemical cycles, energy, fossil fuels, nuclear energy, ozone, renewable energy, and water.
Browse the collection at: http://www.dlese.org/dds/histogram.do?group=subject&key=esa
See resources in the collection at: http://www.dlese.org/library/query.do?q=&s=0&ky=01o

The Stone Wall Initiative (SWI) promotes the appreciation, investigation, and conservation of stone walls in New England . SWI emphasizes the cultural, natural, and aesthetic resources provided by historic walls, which are the closest thing New England has to classical ruins. Materials available at the site include news articles, links to books and other publications, and links to information on public presentations, school presentations, and field trips. For teachers, there are collaborative, field-tested curricula for students in primary and secondary grades, a reference book that provides background information, and information on a teacher's kit that contains specimens of stone found in walls, an identification card for the specimens, and materials for studying them. There is also information on threats to New England 's stone walls and how to preserve them.
Browse the collection at: http://www.dlese.org/dds/histogram.do?group=subject&key=swi
See resources in the collection at: http://www.dlese.org/library/query.do?q=&s=0&ky=01s

Podcast Competition: NASA's 21st Century Explorer Podcast Competition for ages 11-18

logo for NASA 21st Century Explorer Podcast CompetitionThe first NASA 21st Century Explorer Podcast Competition challenges students to create unique audio recording and video shorts to answer the question: "How Will Space Exploration Benefit Your Life in the Future?" The contest is open to U.S. citizens, students ages 11-18; the deadline for submitting a podcast has been extended to October 20, 2006. Students will be grouped into two age divisions: 11-14 and 15-18. Each division will have two separate categories: audio podcast and video podcast. First, second, and third place prizes will be awarded in each category and age group. An additional "People's Choice Award" will honor one podcast for each age division.

Prizes include:

  • PEOPLE'S CHOICE (ages 11-14): One free passport to Space Camp
  • PEOPLE'S CHOICE (ages 15-18): One 13 inch MacBook Laptop
  • 1ST PLACE : One 30GB iPod
  • 2ND PLACE : One 1GB iPod Nano
  • THIRD PLACE : One 1GB iPod Shuffle

The 21st Century Explorer Podcast Competition is an Education and Public Outreach project designed to inspire and motivate the next generation of explorers and to compete effectively for the minds, imaginations, and career ambitions of America 's young people.

Science Education Grants: NSTA/Toyota TAPESTRY Grants

The 17th Toyota TAPESTRY Grants for Science Teachers program
Each year, Toyota Motor Sales and the National Science Teachers Association (NSTA) award 50 grants of up to $10,000 and 20 or more mini-grants of up to $2,500 each for innovative projects that enhance science education in the school and/or school district. Toyota TAPESTRY grant proposals should demonstrate creativity, involve risk-taking, possess a visionary quality, and model a novel way of presenting science. Proposed projects should promote exciting and innovative activities to motivate students in science and be limited only by the creative imaginations of the applicants. The TAPESTRY grants program is open to K-12 science teachers residing in the United States or U.S. territories or possessions. All middle and high school science teachers and elementary teachers who teach some science in the classroom are eligible. Proposals must describe the project's potential impact on students and include a budget. Online proposals must be submitted by January 18, 2007.

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Your feedback is appreciated. To send comments, articles, requests for a text-only version of the newsletter, or to unsubscribe, send email to: support@dlese.org. To contribute photos of interesting Earth science phenomena for use in the DLESE Matters banner, email support@dlese.org. Photo credit acknowledged. Guidelines for submitting newsletter content. Subscribe or unsubscribe to the DLESE Matters newsletter.

This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. 0215640 ( DLESE Program Center ). Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.

Photograph in banner: Courtesy of Peter Burkholder and Lynne Davis
Editor: Mary Beth Reece
Graphic designer: Marianne Weingroff
Published October, 2006

Combined DLESE, NSF, and NSDL logos graphic DLESE logo and link - blue sky, green globe horizon line background, white lettering NSF logo and link - dark blue circle within gold sunburst wheel, NSF lettering in white NSDL logo and link - NSDL letters on green/gold/blue/red backgrounds, black outline