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New in this Issue
- Student Climate Research Campaign Workshop Series for Educators (Jan. 14, Feb. 18, March 17)
- NASA’s Expedition Earth and Beyond Webinar (Jan. 17)
- NASA’s Aquarius Educator Webinar Series (Jan. 17 & 24)
- Earthzine Annual Essay and Blogging Contest on Sustainability – Undergraduate/Graduate Students (Due Jan. 20)
- 2012 Thacher Environmental Research Contest (Entries Due April 16)
- AMS DataStreme Earth’s Climate Systems Professional Development Course for K-12 Educators (Jan.-April 2012)
- 2012 Faculty Institutes for NASA Earth and Space Science Education (FINESSE) – College Educators (Jan. 3-4)
- Center for Astronomy Education Teaching Excellence Workshops for Higher Education Educators and Students (Jan. 7,8,20)
- FameLab Astrobiology – Science Communication Competition for Grad Students/Early Career Astrobiologists (Jan. 13)
- 2012 NASA Student Airborne Research Program – Undergrad and Early Graduate Students (Apply by Feb. 10)
- Polar Science Weekend at Pacific Science Center (March 1-4)
- AMS Climate Diversity Project Course Professional Development for Undergraduate Faculty (Apply by March 15)
- ASP Annual Meeting – Communicating Science: A National Conference on Education and Public Outreach (Aug. 4-8)
- “Climate Science Research for Educators and Students” Professional Development Workshops for High School Science Teachers (Summer 2012)
- IceHunters Invites the World to Find New Horizons Future KBO Destinations
- Lifelines for High School Climate Change Education
- Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) Ambassador in the Classroom
- A Day At Goddard: Opportunity for DC Metro Teachers – Grades 8-12
- NASA Earth and Space Science Fellowship Program – Graduate Students
- NASA Postdoctoral Fellowships (Apply by March 1)
- Applications Being Accepted for Einstein Fellowship Program – K-12 STEM Educators (Due Jan. 5)
- From Earth to the Solar System Gallery
- Annotated Listing of Astronomy Apps for Smart Phones and Tablets
- World of Change: Athabasca Oil Sands
- Vesta Greeting Cards
Programs & Events
New in this Issue
NASA Langley Research Center, in partnership with the Virginia Air and Space Center, is offering a series of GLOBE Teacher Training Workshops supporting the Student Climate Research Campaign. These free workshops will provide approximately 5.5 hours of professional development per workshop.
- Jan. 14, 9am-3pm ET – Atmosphere and Climate – This workshop will prepare teachers for the next Great Global Investigation of Climate Intensive Observing Period. Teachers will become certified in temperature, precipitation, and cloud protocols.
- Feb. 18, 9am-3pm ET – Phenology and Climate – This workshop will introduce teachers to the Great Global Investigation of Climate, and the Climate and Land Cover Intensive Observing Period. Teachers will become certified in green-up and green-down, budburst, and temperature protocols.
- March 17, 9am-3pm ET – Land Cover and Climate – This workshop will prepare teachers for the next Climate and Land Cover Intensive Observing Period. Teachers will become certified in biometry, land cover site, and MUC classification protocols.
All workshops will be held at the Virgina Air and Space Center in Hampton, Va. For more information on the workshops, the GLOBE program, and to register, please visit http://bit.ly/vnQZlp.
(Jan. 17, 6:30-7:45pm ET)
NASA’s Expedition Earth and Beyond (EEAB) Program promotes student-led research investigations in the classroom using NASA data and resources. This teacher training session will provide participants with an overview and tutorial of the optional use of Wikispaces as classes participate in Expedition Earth and Beyond. The EEAB Wikis provide useful information for students conducting research, areas where teams can be mentored by a science expert, and a place for teachers to ask questions and learn from one another. Details on how to get a class set up and working with a mentor on a student-led investigation will be provided. For more information and to register, visit http://1.usa.gov/uuve22.
(Jan. 17 & 24, 7-8pm ET)
NASA will host a two-part webinar series on the Aquarius/SAC-D Satellite and the science behind what it takes to measure the salinity of the world’s oceans. NASA scientists Gary Lageloef, David Le Vine and Yi Chao will discuss the complexities of getting accurate salinity measurements from space, and will share the most recent data collected by the satellite. The concept map-based webinars will also provide participants with a rich collection of educational resources relating to Aquarius, salinity and technology. For more information and to register, please visit http://bit.ly/un2imR.
Earthzine Annual Essay and Blogging Contest on Sustainability – Undergraduate/Graduate Students (Due Jan. 20)
(Deadline Extended to Jan. 20)
Earthzine invites undergraduate and graduate students from around the world to submit an essay for its 2011 Third Annual College and University Student Essay and Blogging Contest. This year’s theme is “How Can Earth Observation Help Us to Build a More Sustainable World?” Students are invited to submit original essays that describe, reflect upon, or envision roles for Earth observation in improving its website. The authors of each essay will be invited to lead a blog about their essay, and to participate in blogs of competing essays. Winners will be determined based on the overall quality of the essay and blog. Winners will share $1,200 in prizes, with $500 for the first prize. For full rules and to submit an essay, visit http://bit.ly/sinKGB.
(Entries Due April 16)
From the massive Gulf oil spill to the continued decline of Arctic sea ice, NASA satellites and other observing instruments have proved crucial this year in monitoring the many environmental changes – both natural and human-induced – occurring on global, regional and local scales. The 2012 Thacher Environmental Research Contest, sponsored by the Institute for Global Environmental Strategies, challenges high school students (grades 9-12) to conduct innovative research on our changing planet using the latest geospatial tools and data.
The best project will receive cash awards in the amount of $2,000 for first place, $1,000 for second place and $500 for third place. Individuals or teams of up to four students may submit entries. In the case of team entries, the cash award will be split equally among the winning team members. Winners will also be featured in an Encyclopedia of the Earth article. In addition to the student prizes, teachers or adult “coaches” of the first-, second-, and third-place students will receive a $200 Amazon.com gift card.
For more information, visit: http://www.strategies.org/thachercontest
AMS DataStreme Earth’s Climate Systems Professional Development Course for K-12 Educators (Jan.-April 2012)
The American Meteorological Society (AMS), with support from NASA and in partnership with the State University of New York’s College at Brockport, is developing a national cadre of K-12 teachers highly trained in climate science, and familiar with climate modeling. Teachers are trained through DataStreme Earth’s Climate System (ECS), a semester-long, graduate level, pre-college teacher professional development course. DataStreme ECS uses NASA Earth Observing System (EOS) data and visualizations, and introduced the Educational Global Climate Modeling (EdGCM) developed by the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies, to explore the fundamentals of climate change. Teachers completing the course construct and execute a Plan of Action to advance public climate science literacy and affect curriculum change within their local schools and districts.
DataStreme ECS is administered through 21 course Local Implementation Teams (LITs) across the country. The course is free to all participants, and the teachers are awarded three graduate credits upon successful completion of the course. For more information, including a listing of course offerings by state, and an application form, visit http://bit.ly/vvSBkG.
2012 Faculty Institutes for NASA Earth and Space Science Education (FINESSE) – College Educators (Jan. 3-4)
(Jan. 3-4; Clearwater Beach, Fla.)
Applications are now being accepted for the 2011-2012 FINESSE. This two-day workshop will assist university and community college science and education faculty in preparing future teachers in science. The 2012 institute will incorporate the theme of Our Solar System in a New Light, in conjunction with the Year of the Solar System. FINESSE workshops are free, and participants receive a $300 stipend and lunch. During the workshop, NASA Earth and space scientists and educators share inquiry activities, data and resources. Registration will remain open while space is still available. For more information and to register, visit http://bit.ly/vIr5Y5.
Center for Astronomy Education Teaching Excellence Workshops for Higher Education Educators and Students (Jan. 7,8,20)
The Center for Astronomy Education announces a series of educator workshops for astronomy educators. The goal of these workshops is to familiarize participants with research-validated active engagement teaching strategies and assessment materials, as well as how to implement them in their college courses. Participants will learn how to create productive learning environments, beginning with a brief review of research on the nature of teaching and learning. Participants will spend most of the workshop in the roles of student, instructor and critical friend to practice implementing new strategies learned. Advanced levels are available for those who have participated in previous CAE workshops. To learn more and register, visit http://bit.ly/rLp5cu.
- Jan. 7-8 – Austin, Texas – Improving the College Introductory Courses Through Active Engagement: A Tier I (introductory) Workshop ($45 registration fee)
- Jan. 8 – Austin, Texas – NASA CAE Tier II (advanced) Special Topics Workshop: Using Technology in the Classroom ($35 registration fee)
- Jan. 20 - Ann Arbor, Mich. – Special Topics Workshop on Implementing Lecture – Tutorials for Introductory Astronomy (no registration fee)
FameLab Astrobiology – Science Communication Competition for Grad Students/Early Career Astrobiologists (Jan. 13)
FameLab Astrobiology is a science communication competition focused on graduate students and post docs doing research in astrobiology. Via four preliminary and one final competition, early career astrobiologists will compete to convey their own research or related science concepts. Each contestant has the spotlight for only three minutes – slides and charts are not allowed. A panel of experts in both science and science communication will judge the events. Events will take place on the following dates:
- Jan. 13 – Houston, Texas – Lunar and Planetary Institute
- Feb. 10 - Denver, Co. – Denver Museum of Nature and Science
- March 9 – Washington, D.C. – NASA HQ/National Geographic Society
- Jan.-March - Online via YouTube
- FINAL: April 12-16 – Atlanta, Ga. – Astrobiology Science Conference (AbSciCon)
Each preliminary event will feature science communication training and enrichment activities, providing exposure to alternative careers. There will be a two-day master class for finalists, prior to the final event in April. The winner will go on to compete in the International FameLab Final in the UK in June 2012. To find more information and to register, visit http://bit.ly/sIz7Py. Questions may be directed to Daniella Scalice, NASA Astrobiology Institute.
2012 NASA Student Airborne Research Program – Undergrad and Early Graduate Students (Apply by Feb. 10)
(Apply by Feb. 10; Apply by Jan. 20 for Early Acceptance; Internship June 17-Aug. 10)
The NASA Airborne Science Program invites highly motivated junior and senior undergraduate and early graduate students to apply for participation in the NASA Student Airborne Research Program (SARP 2012). The summer internship program provides students with hands-on research experience in all aspects of a major scientific campaign. Students will work in four multi-disciplinary teams to study surface, atmospheric, and oceanographic processes. Participants will fly onboard the NASA P-3B aircraft, where they will assist in the operation of instruments to sample and measure atmospheric gasses, and to image land and water surface in multiple spectral bands. Applicants must have a strong background in any of the physical, chemical or biological sciences, or engineering, and an interest in applying their background to the study of the Earth system. For more information and to download the program application, please visit http://bit.ly/tpVjqE.
(March 1-4; Pacific Science Center, Seattle, Wash.)
The 7th annual Polar Science Weekend (PSW) brings students, teachers and families face-to-face with active scientists who work in some of the most remote and challenging places on Earth, to learn first-hand about Arctic and Antarctic research in a fun and informal setting. PSW consists of many hands-on activities, live demonstrations, and exhibits about current polar research, presented by the researchers themselves. PSW highlights NASA-funded work in the polar regions, and is supported by a grant from NASA E/PO for Earth and Space Science. For more information, please visit http://bit.ly/sEWWWw.
AMS Climate Diversity Project Course Professional Development for Undergraduate Faculty (Apply by March 15)
(Apply by March 15; May 20-25, Washington, D.C.; Jan. 5-8, 2013, Austin, Texas)
The American Meteorological Society invites minority-serving institutions (MSIs) to offer an introductory-level climate science course, AMS Climate Studies. This course explores the scientific principals governing Earth’s climate system. The lesson format allows students to explore real-world climate data and become informed citizens. Professional development training is offered with no cost to designated climate course instructors through a NSF Opportunities for Enhancing Diversity in the Geosciences grant. Workshops will cover climate science training, course implementation strategies, and issues related to enhancing diversity in the geosciences. Workshops will be held in conjunction with the AMS Annual Meeting. For more information and to apply, visit http://bit.ly/thaKTR.
ASP Annual Meeting – Communicating Science: A National Conference on Education and Public Outreach (Aug. 4-8)
(Aug. 4-8; Doubletree by Hilton, Tucson, Ariz.)
The 124th annual meeting of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific welcomes education and public outreach perspectives from astronomy, space, Earth and biological sciences, journalism, film, and social media, with a particular focus on effective communication of science and scientific ideas. There will be professional development sessions, hands-on workshops, special interest group meetings, talks, panels, poster papers, tours and lots of time for networking. Special hotel rates have been arranged for participants. For more information, please visit http://bit.ly/vSpJa6.
“Climate Science Research for Educators and Students” Professional Development Workshops for High School Science Teachers (Summer 2012)
The Institute for Earth Science Research and Education, in collaboration with Queens College/City University of New York, is now seeking participants for summer professional development workshops in the second year of its “Climate Science Research for Educators and Students” project. This project is funded under NASA’s Innovations in Climate Education (NICE) initiative, and focuses on improving the understanding of sun-Earth-atmosphere interactions by helping educators and students develop high-quality, climate-related, science fair projects. The program focuses on using inexpensive instrumentation for monitoring solar radiation and the atmosphere, including instruments that educators and students can build themselves. All high school students are encouraged to apply, and travel funding is the responsibility of the participant. To apply, please contact David Brooks (610) 584-5619. For more information on the program, visit http://bit.ly/tpNh4R.
The world is invited to help discover a potential new, icy follow-on destination for NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft through the IceHunters website. New Horizons is currently en route to make the first flyby of the Pluto system, and is then capable of making additional exploration of bodies still farther out in the Sun’s Kuiper Belt. Through this citizen science project, the public can help scientists search through specially-obtained deep telescopic images for currently unknown objects in the Kuiper Belt. Along the way, they will also discover variable stars and asteroids. For more information, visit http://www.icehunters.org/ or visit the project blog at http://blogs.zooniverse.org/icehunters/2011/06/15/hello-world/.
Lifelines for High School Climate Change Education is a project to establish professional learning communities (PLCs) of high school teachers aimed at implementing effective teaching of climate change in existing courses. PLCs are identifying the best resources to use, comparing course outlines, and are hearing/seeing webinars by climate scientists, both live and as archived presentations. PLCs are having real-time telemeetings, as well as asynchronous communication through shared websites, wikis, and other techniques to achieve the most effective ways to communicate without petroleum-fueled travel. If you are interested in joining a Lifeline PLC, or forming a PLC (becoming a PLC Leader) please visit: http://www.lawrencehallofscience.org/gss/lifelines/.
Let NASA take over your classroom for the day! Teachers in the DC Metro area and southern Pennsylvania are eligible for a visit from an SDO educator or scientist. Your students will learn about solar clocks, Earth’s place in the solar system, electricity and magnetism, the electromagnetic spectrum, and the Doppler effect. Visits are free, include all supplies for the activity, and can be customized for each teacher. Register at http://sdo.gsfc.nasa.gov/epo/educators/ambassador.php.
Teachers in the DC Metro area are invited to bring their students to NASA Goddard Space Flight Center for a day spent learning what it is like to work for NASA. Field trips include a meet-and-greet at the visitors center featuring a scientist and engineer, a demonstration of the Science on a Sphere program, a tour of the satellite testing facility, and an inquiry-based science lab activity. Programs are highly customizable, teacher-friendly and are designed for grades 8-12. Contact Aleya Van Doren (firstname.lastname@example.org) with your desired date and class information to reserve your spot. Slots fill up quickly, so register today!
(Deadline for new applicants – Feb. 1; For renewal applicants – March 15)
NASA announces a call for graduate fellowship proposals to the NASA Earth and Space Science Fellowship (NESSF) program for the 2012-2013 academic year. The purpose of the NESSF is to ensure continued training of a highly qualified workforce in disciplines needed to achieve NASA’s scientific goals. Awards resulting from the competitive selection will be made in the form of training grants to the respective universities. This call for fellowship proposals solicits applications from accredited U.S. universities on behalf of individuals pursuing Master of Science (M.Sc.) or Doctoral (Ph.D.) degrees in Earth and space science, or related disciplines.
The NESSF call for proposals and submission instructions are located at the NESSF 12 solicitation index page at http://nspires.nasaprs.com/ – click on “Solicitations,” then select “Open Solicitation.” Select “NESSF 12″ announcement. Please also refer to “Proposal Submission Instructions” and “Frequently Asked Questions,” listed under “Other Documents” on the NESSF 12 solicitation index page.
Please note – the advisor has an active role in the submission of the fellowship proposal, and all proposals must be submitted in electronic format only through the NASA NSPIRES system. To use the system, the advisor, the student, and the university must all register. Extended instructions on how to submit an electronic proposal package are posted on the NESSF 12 solicitation index page listed above. You can register in NSPIRES at http://nspires.nasaprs.com.
(Applications accepted three times each year: March 1, July 1, and Nov. 1)
The NASA Postdoctoral Program (NPP) offers scientists and engineers unique opportunities to conduct research at NASA Centers. Each NPP fellowship opportunity is designed to advance NASA research in a specific project related to space science, Earth science, aeronautics, space operations, exploration systems, lunar science, or astrobiology. Applicants must have a Ph.D. or equivalent degree in hand before beginning the fellowship, but may apply while completing the degree. Applicants must also be U.S. citizens, lawful permanent residents, or foreign nationals eligible for J-1 status as a research scholar.
Stipends for Postdoctoral Fellows start at $50,000 per year, with moderate supplements for high cost-of-living areas and for certain academic specialties. Funds are available for relocation expenses, up to a specified limit, and health insurance is available through the program. Fellows also receive $8,000 per appointment year to support travel to conferences, meetings, and other activities that directly support their research. For further information and to apply, visit http://bit.ly/rPl8uc.
(Applications due Jan. 5)
Applications are now being accepted for the 2012 Albert Einstein Distinguished Educator Fellowship program. The goal of the Einstein Fellowship program is to provide an opportunity for teachers to inform national policy and improve communication between the K-12 STEM education community and national leaders. If selected, Einstein Fellows spend a school year in Washington, D.C., sharing their expertise as a fellow in one of several government agency offices, such as the Department of Energy, NASA, the National Science Foundation, NOAA, or in the office of a member of Congress.
Selection is based on exemplary experience in K-12 STEM teaching; demonstrated leadership in the community; an understanding of national, state, and local education policy; and communication and interpersonal skills. During the Fellowship, each Einstein Fellow receives a monthly stipend of $6,000, plus a $1,000 cost of living allowance. In addition, there is a moving/relocation allowance, as well as a professional travel allowance. To learn more about the program and to apply, visit http://bit.ly/vrTT3G.
From Earth to the Solar System (FETTS) is a collection of high-resolution images that showcase planetary exploration. The images are artistic and informative, weaving together the themes of astrobiology, planetary science and astronomy. Take some time to browse the over 90 images in the collection, created to celebrate NASA’s Year of the Solar System. Users are invited to download images and to host an exhibit. http://bit.ly/z5COKm
An annotated overview of 98 astronomy applications for smart phones and tablets has been published in the online journal Astronomy Education Review. The list includes a variety of apps for displaying and explaining the sky above you; a series of astronomical clocks, calendars, and calculators; sky catalogs and observing planners, citizen science tools; and even a graphic simulator for making galaxies collide. Many of the apps are free, while some cost a dollar or two. The list is available at http://bit.ly/thpg6b.
The Athabasca Oil Sands are at once a source of oil, of economic growth, and of environmental concern. This series of images shows the growth of surface mines around the Athabasca River from 1984 to the present.
Inspired by Vesta’s series of craters affectionately nicknamed “the snowman,” the Dawn E/PO team invites you to get creative and make a Vesta greeting card. Choose from several intriguing images of Vesta. We have developed templates to get you started. Take a photo of your card and it may be featured in the Vesta Greeting Card Gallery. To create your own card, visit http://dawn.jpl.nasa.gov/DawnCommunity/vesta_greeting_card.asp.
Jan. 7-8 – Center for Astronomy Education Teaching Excellence Workshop – Austin, Texas http://bit.ly/rLp5cu
Jan. 13 – FameLab Competition Begins http://bit.ly/sIz7Py
Jan. 14 - Student Climate Research Campaign Workshop for Educators http://bit.ly/vnQZlp
Jan. 17 – NASA Expedition Earth and Beyond Webinar http://1.usa.gov/uuve22
Jan. 17 – NASA Aquarius Educator Webinar http://bit.ly/un2imR
Jan. 20 – Center for Astronomy Education Teaching Excellence Workshop – Ann Arbor, Mich. http://bit.ly/rLp5cu
Jan. 24 – NASA Aquarius Educator Webinar http://bit.ly/un2imR
Feb. 1 – Applications Due for New Applicants – NASA Earth and Space Science Fellowship Program http://nspires.nasaprs.com/
Feb. 10 – Applications Due – 2012 NASA Student Airborne Research Program http://bit.ly/tpVjqE
Feb. 18 – Student Climate Research Campaign Workshop for Educators http://bit.ly/vnQZlp
March 15 – Applications Due – AMS Climate Diversity Project Course Professional Development for Undergraduate Faculty http://bit.ly/um0PcK
March 15 – Applications Due for Renewal Applicants – NASA Earth and Space Science Fellowship Program http://nspires.nasaprs.com/
March 17 – Student Climate Research Campaign Workshop for Educators http://bit.ly/vnQZlp
March 29-April 1 – 2012 NSTA National Conference http://bit.ly/yghsEA
Aug. 4-8 – ASP Annual Meeting http://bit.ly/vSpJa6
NASA Science Mission Directorate: Stephanie Stockman and Jim Lochner
Writer: Morgan Woroner, IGES.
Contributions From: Whitney Cobb, McREL; Andrew Fraknoi, ASP; Eve Halligan, LPI; Jeff Kart, Earthzine; Jim Manning, ASP; Shannon Roach, University of Arizona; Page Valderrama Graff, NASA JSC; and Kevin Ward, Sigma Space Corporation.
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