NASA’s GLOBE Program

GLOBE (Global Learning and Observations to Benefit the Environment) is a worldwide hands-on, primary and secondary school-based science and education program. GLOBE’s vision promotes and supports students, teachers and scientists to collaborate on inquiry-based investigations of the environment and the Earth system working in close partnership with NASA and NSF Earth System Science Projects (ESSPs) in study and research about the dynamics of Earth’s environment.

Who is involved in GLOBE?

Announced in 1994, GLOBE began operations on Earth Day 1995. Today, the international GLOBE network has grown to include representatives from 111 participating countries coordinating GLOBE activities that are integrated into their local and regional communities. Due to their efforts, there are more than 50,000 GLOBE-trained teachers representing over 23,000 schools around the world. GLOBE students have contributed more than 20 millionmeasurements to the GLOBE database for use in their inquiry-based science projects.

GLOBE brings together students, teachers and scientists through the GLOBE Schools Network in support of student learning and research. Parents, Scientists and GLOBE Alumni also support students’ engagement in GLOBE.

An Overview of NASA Earth Science Satellite Constellations

Steve Platnick, EOS Project Scientist, A-Train Project Scientist

Angelita C. Kelly, EOS Science Interface Manager, Constellation Team Manager

History of NASA studying earth science

“Man must rise above the Earth – to the top of the atmosphere and beyond – for only thus will he fully understand the world in which he lives.” (Socrates, 400BC)

We live in a gifted time in terms of technology

3 main earth observing system (EOS) platforms: individual satellites carry multiple earth observing tools in themes: water cycle, land, tropospheric and stratospheric chemistry

research on …

  • atmospheric composition
  • climate variability and change
  • water and energy cycle
  • carbon cycle and ecosystem
  • earth surface and interior
  • weather
  • interdisciplinary science

Constellations:

constellation flying (group of satellites coordinated to fly in tandem so photographs of earth are taken at the same time): A-Train (afternoon constellation) and Morning Constellations

Multiple satellites with different instruments complement each other – provides bigger picture

The Constellations are an international effort, managed by multiple organizations

All scientific data is completely free and web-accessible from anywhere in the world

Students who aspire to work at NASA should take math and science courses as soon as they are offered at their grade levels; there are various choices for a technical career at NASA: scientist, engineering, data systems, computer specialist, analyst, quality control, education and outreach (and there are non-technical careers that contribute to NASA’s work)

Resources:

  • A-train: atrain.nasa.gov
  • Earth Observing System (EOS) Project Science Office: eos.nasa.gov
  • The Earth Observatory: earthobservatory.nasa.gov
  • Science Visualization Studio: svs.gsfc.nasa.gov
  • MODIS Rapid Response Imagery: rapidfire.sci.gsfc.nasa.gov

Curriculum Mapping tool introduced as part of SAS

Pennsylvania school districts will be interested to know that the PA Department of Education is unveiling a Curriculum Mapping tool – free – as part of the Standards Aligned System (SAS). I was able to start using the CM tool last week in Harrisburg and it is comparable to many of the commercial products on the market (Rubicon Atlas, OnHand Schools, Performance Pathways, etc.). While all the bugs are still not worked out, it’s pretty user friendly and highly customizable. The Curriculum Mapping tool was developed to provide PA districts equity in access and resources. Many schools that have never had access to this type of tool will now be able to effectively work on curriculum development. Schools already using a pricy tool might want to consider the cost benefits of switching over.

More than likely PDE will be rolling this out through local Intermediate Units, so stay tuned.

Effectiveness of Reading Comprehension Programs

“To help close this research gap, Mathematica Policy Research conducted a study supported by the Institute of Education Sciences in the US Department of Education over the course of two school years evaluating the effectiveness of four supplemental reading comprehension programs in helping disadvantaged fifth graders improve their reading comprehension. The study used an experimental design, in which schools were randomly assigned to use an intervention or not …

The study found positive impacts for one of the four curricula. In particular, when teachers had one prior year of experience using the ReadAbout curriculum, students scored higher on a reading comprehension assessment. The score improvement is equivalent to moving from the 50th to the 59th percentile on a standardized test. The study found no improvement in reading comprehension scores for students using the other three curricula.”

Read the summary here.

PA State Board of Education moves nutrition/physical activity proposal

State Board of Education moves nutrition/physical activity proposal
Addressing the issue of childhood obesity, this week the State Board of Education voted its initial approval of a proposal to establish nutritional standards for competitive foods and beverages and to create new requirements for physical activity for students.  Created as amendments to the Chapter 12 regulations (Students and Student Services), new language sets nutritional standards for foods provided outside reimbursable school meals, including food served in classroom parties, fundraisers sold during the school day and items dispensed from school vending machines.  The standards would not apply to foods and beverages sold in connection with fundraisers or at school sponsored events held outside of the regular school day.
In addition, the proposal would require schools to provide at least 30 minutes of “physical activity” each day for students that can be achieved in a variety of ways as determined by the school. In addition, schools would have to provide 150 minutes of “physical education” per week for elementary students and 225 minutes each week for middle and secondary school students.  The proposal also contains various requirements for reporting and monitoring for compliance.

From a recent PSBA Legislative Report:

Addressing the issue of childhood obesity, this week the State Board of Education voted its initial approval of a proposal to establish nutritional standards for competitive foods and beverages and to create new requirements for physical activity for students.  Created as amendments to the Chapter 12 regulations (Students and Student Services), new language sets nutritional standards for foods provided outside reimbursable school meals, including food served in classroom parties, fundraisers sold during the school day and items dispensed from school vending machines.  The standards would not apply to foods and beverages sold in connection with fundraisers or at school sponsored events held outside of the regular school day.

In addition, the proposal would require schools to provide at least 30 minutes of “physical activity” each day for students that can be achieved in a variety of ways as determined by the school. In addition, schools would have to provide 150 minutes of “physical education” per week for elementary students and 225 minutes each week for middle and secondary school students.  The proposal also contains various requirements for reporting and monitoring for compliance. [emphasis added]

How are schools going to manage this?! 30 minutes of PE a day for elementary, 45 minutes of PE a day for secondary students …

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A little curriculum humor to start the week …

From the Boston Globe

Learn This, America! The Final Report of the Commission to Crush the Strains of Weakness, Socialism, and Unpatriotic Thought in our Schools

After an exhaustive review of the educational materials for K-12 students throughout the United States, we were shocked to discover factual inaccuracies and ideological biases marring what is being taught to our children in subjects ranging from mathematics to grammar.

Read it here.

More about PA’s Keystone Exams …

Today, from PDE:

The following Keystone Exam Assessment Anchors and Eligible Content documents are now posted on the Standards Aligned System (SAS) website at THIS LINK:

The following Keystone Exam Assessment Anchors and Eligible Content documents are now posted on the Standards Aligned System (SAS) website at the link provided below:
–  Algebra I
–  Algebra II
–  Geometry
–  Literature
–  English Composition
–  Biology
–  Chemistry
http://www.pdesas.org/Standard/AnchorsDownloads