Professional Development: Curriculum Development Workshop

Calling all Science Educators! Educators of all grade levels are cordially invited to attend the (free!) COSEE-Ocean Systems Curriculum Development Workshop to be held at Colby College on July 19-21.   Please Note: Space is limited to 15 educators.  Don’t wait!  Apply now by completing a brief Survey Monkey application (click here). The deadline for completing the application is Friday, June 3rd.

Are you looking for new ideas for your existing programs or curriculum?  We have lined up an excellent group of scientists for you to work with on the first day of the workshop.  Please visit the following links to learn more about their research:
Damian Brady–Water quality impacts on organisms

William Ellis–Marine science, chemistry and aerosols

Jeffrey Runge–Zooplankton ecology and fisheries

Rebecca Van Beneden–Aquatic organism response to stress

Rhian Waller–Cold-water corals, deep-sea invertebrate reproduction

These scientists will work with you in small groups (3:1) to refine a cohesive story, based around a scientist-created concept map about one topic related to their work.  This is a chance to pool your collective expertise (as scientists and educators) and receive guidance and feedback about your ideas for building research-based content into your programs and curricula.  The scientists will also make recommendations for data sources that you could incorporate into your unit.  On subsequent days, graduate students will continue to work with you in refining your curriculum/program ideas.

Again: Apply now by completing a brief Survey Monkey application (click here).  The deadline for completing the application is Friday, June 3rd.  Your participation and insights will enrich this workshop and we look forward to working with you in July!

The COSEE-Ocean Systems Team

Online Curriculum — NOAA Ocean for Life: One World, One Ocean

Ocean for Life: One World, One Ocean increases cultural understanding through ocean science by providing high quality, immersive ocean field studies and follow-on education programs to encourage students to discover common ground in marine science, conservation and how the ocean connects us all.  The Ocean for Life program is designed around three main themes: a sense of place, interconnectedness, and ocean conservation and stewardship. These themes are highlighted thought activities focusing on ocean science exploration, cultural exchanges, and youth media projects.  Learn more about this innovative program and get a sneak peek at the pre-application guidance <>. If adequate funds are secured, the official application will be posted in mid-January 2011.

Great Whales Curriculum for Grades 6-8

The Great Whales, developed by the Marine mammal Institute at Oregon State University is now available. The curriculum is geared for Grades 6-9.  You can locate the curriculum on DLESE (Digital Library of Earth System Education). This takes you to the search page for DLESE.  Enter the title  The Great Whales, Select grade level 6-8, Resource Type  –  Curriculum.  Then select  Search.  It will appear at the top of the page. The curriculum appears on the website with “download PDF file”.  It is 119 pages.

Casco Bay Curriculum for Teachers

Friends of Casco Bay developed the “place-based” Casco Bay Curriculum to help 4th through 6th grade teachers incorporate locally-focused environmental education into their classrooms. Our goal is to instill an ethic of stewardship in our youth, by helping them understand the immediate marine world around them through the use of hands-on science, inquiry activities, and actual data.

Most children will not be able to travel to rain forests or to the Arctic, but our communities’ students can experience Casco Bay first-hand.  We seek to promote understanding about issues facing our community, demonstrate why these issues are important, and offer ideas on how they can be resolved.

The objectives of the Casco Bay Curriculum are to:
Provide teachers with up-to-date information about the health of Casco Bay;
Inform students about citizen actions that can protect the environment;
Foster a sense of stewardship for the Bay, the watershed and the environment; and,
Demonstrate how environmental issues facing our communities can be resolved.

Learn more at the Friends of Casco Bay website.

Great Whales Curriculum for Grades 6-9 on DLESE

The Great Whales, developed by the Marine mammal Institute at Oregon State University, is now available. The curriculum is geared for Grades 6-9.  You can locate the curriculum on DLESE – Digital Library of Earth System Education. The Great Whales curriculum offers engaging teaching activities that explore the past and present status of whales, whale biology and anatomy, current research to discover whale migratory patterns as well as defining their winter and summer habitats. Different species of great whales are presented with information about their biology, migration patterns, habitat needs, exploitation, and current threats to different species.

Job Oppening: Program Specialist, National Geographic Society

Work as an integral member of the Education Programs team, assisting in the development and management of instructional programs for students, teachers and informal educators. This position will aid in the creation of new marine science curriculum for classroom teachers and informal educators, handle logistics for our multi-day Teacher Academy each summer, assist in the organization and access to ocean education materials on education department website, and potentially conduct outreach to educators on NGEP education programs at conferences. Ocean education materials produced in NGEP will range from complete curricula, to collections of lesson plans, activities, teaching posters, family guides, videos, toolkits, and other resources.

Job description

VitalVenture from GMRI

The Gulf of Maine Research Institute in collaboration with Maine Sea Grant has just launched a new online education resource, VitalVenture, an interdisciplinary watershed education curriculum that engages Maine students in grades 5-8 with a series of locally relevant, issue-based Watershed Experiences that deepen conceptual understanding and connection to place.

Each Watershed Experience includes a series of authentic, inquiry-based learning activities in which students observe, ask questions, investigate, take action, and deepen their scientific understanding and connection to their local watersheds. Sustained over four grades, VitalVenture Watershed Experiences provide students with a continuum of authentic, inquiry-based learning.

VitalVenture supports and extends the science skills and concepts students are introduced to during GMRI’s LabVenture! (5/6th grade) program and prepares students for practicing these skills in Vital Signs (7/8th grade). These programs and curriculum provide the tools and resources for teachers to ignite students’ interest in science and get them invested in locally relevant environmental issues.

The development of these Watershed Experiences was lead by the Gulf of Maine Research Institute in collaboration with Maine Sea Grant and 31 Maine middle school educators. Watershed Experiences contributed by Maine Sea Grant are based, in part, on the Penobscot River Watershed Program, a collaborative project of Maine Sea Grant, the University of Maine Senator George J. Mitchell Center, and the Penobscot River Restoration Trust, working in partnership with Old Town Elementary School and the City of Old Town. VitalVenture is funded through the NOAA Bay Watershed Education and Training (B-Wet) Program.

Online Resource – Coral Bleaching Curriculum

University of Hawaii Sea Grant brought together students, teachers, and researchers to develop a new curriculum, “The Case of the Sick Coral.”  Recently published in the National Marine Educators Association’s journal Current, it guides high school students in developing and testing hypotheses about the differential susceptibility of corals to bleaching.  Note:  no coral is harmed in this activity — only cauliflower and broccoli!

Online Resource – Marine Debris Curriculum

Hawaii Sea Grant announces a new inquiry curriculum, “Sorting Out Sediment Grain Size and Plastic Pollution,” published in the journal Oceanography (vol. 22 no.4). Designed for middle- and high-school students, the activity explores beach erosion, beach health, and plastic pollution with instruction in field sampling and hands-on sediment size determination.

Request for Proposals for Development of Middle School Curriculum

Weeks Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve, commonly referred to as Weeks Bay Reserve is seeking a qualified Vendor to assist with the development of a comprehensive curriculum focused on estuaries for grade levels 6-8. The Weeks Bay Reserve is part of the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, Lands Division, Coastal Section. The curriculum development will be under the direct supervision of the Weeks Bay NERR. Content will be developed by the contractor in collaboration with the Weeks Bay Reserve and other educators in the National Estuarine Research Reserve System. Vendors who are interested in preparing and submitting proposals will find a complete description of the services and requirements for this project by going to the Weeks Bay  website, in the education section, under k-12. Proposals submitted in response to this solicitation must comply with the instructions and procedures contained therein.  Proposals due by January 29, 2010.