SOS Holds Workshop for Science and Social Studies Teachers

July 23, 2013

"The Sphere Next Door," a teacher workshop, hosted by NOAA's Science On a Sphere® (SOS) Program, with support from the National Marine Sanctuary Foundation, was held at the David Skaggs Research Center in Boulder, Colorado on Wednesday and Thursday, July 17 and 18, 2013. The workshop, designed for Colorado secondary science and social studies educators, was an effort to increase local educators’ comfort working with SOS technology and content, as well as knowledge of NOAA data in the classroom. There were 12 teachers from Cherry Creek, Boulder Valley, and Keenesburg, Colorado School Districts. The SOS education effort at ESRL Global Systems Division's Technology Outreach Branch is led by Hilary Peddicord, who also organized and conducted this University of Colorado-accredited workshop.

During the workshop, teachers were exposed to climate-focused SOS demonstrations incorporating clickers and visual/kinesthetic learning activities, as well as scientific literacy and inquiry best practices using SOS data sets. Technology education specialist, Emily Kellagher of the University of Colorado – Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences (CIRES) education outreach, delivered a presentation entitled "Creating Data Rich Lessons," and included activities from the GLOBE Program (Global Learning and Observations to Benefit the Environment), as well as many other prepared data set web resources. A graduate student intern, Eryka Thorley, also presented, with the help of SOS team member Beth Russell, the process of going from data to visualization – highlighting malaria and dengue fever data sets discovered and created by the duo. The teachers were also given time to plan their own lessons around SOS in the classroom and prepare their students for a field trip to NOAA.