“Why Do We Explore?” – Professional Development Opportunity

October 21st, 2014 by Julie Walker

Why Do We Explore? – Professional Development Opportunity for Educators of Grades 5-12, Sat. Nov. 15th, 2014 8:00-4:00 @ National Aquarium in Baltimore

An essential component of the NOAA’s Office of Ocean Exploration and Research (OER) mission is to enhance ocean science and literacy and to build interest in careers that support ocean related work. To help fulfill this mission, the Okeanos Explorer Education Materials Collection was developed to encourage educators and students to become engaged in real time with the voyages and discoveries of the NOAA ship Okeanos Explorer – America’s first federal ship dedicated to Ocean Exploration.  Join NOAA OER Facilitator Melissa Ryan, as you are introduced to volume 1 of the Okeanos Explorer Education Materials Collection: Why Do We Explore? Participants will learn how to use standards- based lessons and other online resources that guide classroom inquires into important reasons for ocean exploration including Climate Change, Energy, Ocean Health, and Human Health. This is Part One of a two-part professional development series. Part Two will be offered at a later date.

Registration is required and space is limited. Educators attending the full day will receive volume 1 of the Okeanos Explorer Education Materials Collection, Why do We Explore? , other resources, a NOAA  Ocean Exploration Certificate of Participation, a continental breakfast and lunch. Those educators attending Part one and part two, will receive a $100 stipend.

Registration deadline is October 24, 2014

To register, contact the Central Reservations Office at 410-576-3833

Questions? Contact David Christopher at 410-576-8799 or dchristopher@aqua.org

Julie Walker is the Chesapeake Research Consortium / Chesapeake Bay Program's Fostering Chesapeake Stewardship Staffer.

Don’t just give them an apple, give them an award: Nominate a teacher today

October 20th, 2014 by Kristin

Last year's award winners

School is in session which means it is time for the Chesapeake Bay Trust’s annual awards program! Every year the Trust, a non-profit grantmaking organization dedicated to environmental education and restoration work, recognizes two students and one teacher from Maryland who have shown a strong commitment to their local environment and the Chesapeake Bay. The winning students are honored with a $5,000 college scholarship and the winning teacher will be given a $2,500 grant award to support environmental education through the Trust. The winners will be formally announced at the Trust’s Legislative Reception at the Maryland State House in January 2015. Applicants can be self-nominated or nominated by individuals who are not family members and the deadline to apply is December 5, 2014 at 5:00 pm.

Read a full description of the awards below and to nominate, visit the Chesapeake Bay Trust’s webpage.

2015 Teacher of the Year Award:

This award is given to a Maryland educator who has shown outstanding commitment to environmental education. Applicants for this award can be self-nominated or nominated by individuals who are not family members. The winner will receive a $2,500 mini grant for environmental education and restoration from the Chesapeake Bay Trust. (Please note that the $2,500 grant award can only be applied to one application and not spread throughout the year.) To nominate a teacher in Maryland for this award, click here.

2015 Student of the Year Scholarship:

The Student of the Year award is given to a Maryland high school or college student who has shown an outstanding commitment to environmental stewardship, Chesapeake Bay restoration and community involvement. Applicants for this award can be self-nominated or nominated by anyone except family members. The winner will receive a $5,000 college scholarship. To nominate a student in Maryland for this award, click here.

2015 Honorable Arthur Dorman Scholarship:

This award recognizes a Maryland high school or college student who demonstrates a commitment to improving the health of the environment and the Chesapeake Bay and who, as a student of color, exhibits exemplary leadership in promoting diversity and inclusion in his/her school and broader community. Applicants for this award can be self-nominated or nominated by anyone except family members. The winner will receive a $5,000 college scholarship. To nominate a student in Maryland for this award, click here.

With questions, contact Kristin Foringer, 410-974-2941, ext. 113

The Chesapeake Bay Trust is a nonprofit grant-making organization dedicated to improving the Chesapeake Bay and its rivers and streams through environmental education, community outreach, and local watershed restoration. Since its inception in 1985, the Trust has awarded over $65 million in grants and engaged hundreds of thousands of citizen stewards in projects that have a measurable impact on the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries. The Trust is supported by the sale of the Maryland Treasure the Chesapeake license plate, donations to the Chesapeake Bay and Endangered Species Fund on the Maryland State income tax form, donations from individuals and corporations, and partnerships with private foundations and federal and state agencies.

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Kristin Foringer is the Communications and Development Associate at the Chesapeake Bay Trust. She can be reached at 410-974-2941, ext. 113 or at kforinger@cbtrust.org. Kristin is also a former Environmental Management Staffer at the Chesapeake Bay Program.

Requests for Proposals- MAEOE 2015 Conference

September 9th, 2014 by Julie Walker

Help Celebrate 30 years of MAEOE!

Help the Maryland Association for Environmental and Outdoor Education its 30th anniversary at their annual conference February 5 – 8, 2015 at the Princess Royale in Ocean City, Maryland.

MAEOE would like to invite you to present your successes and encorage others to do the same! MAEOE conference is an opportunity to share your great ideas, lesson plans or favorite activities with  formal and inform educators from across Maryland.
Share your expertice on cutting edge Environmental Education topics such as STEM, Common Core, Citizen Science, NGSS, and more. This year MAEOE is soliciting presentations 6 different focus strands including, Natural History, Hot Button Topics, Lesson and Examples from the Field, Partnership in action, Greening Maryland Schools, Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics (STEAM). There are a number of ways you can present your ideas or share your experiences. Consider the following options:
Friday Workshops:
- half day (3 hour) workshop, or
- full day (6 hour) workshop
Saturday Session:
- 60 minute presentation
- 130 minute presentation (double session)
- Poster session
Sunday Field Trips
- 1-3 hours
Use this link to submit your proposal for pre-conference workshops, conference sessions and field trips. The on-line proposals are due no later than September 15, 2014. Thank you for being a part MAEOE!
For more information visit our conference page: http://maeoe.org/conference/
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Julie Walker is the Chesapeake Research Consortium / Chesapeake Bay Program's Fostering Chesapeake Stewardship Staffer.

Now Accepting Applications for the Chesapeake Bay Trust Environmental Education Grant Program

August 26th, 2014 by Julie Walker

Apply today for a Environmental Education Grant from the Chesapeake Bay Trust

The Chesapeake Bay Trust is a non-profit grantmaking organization that gives funding to students, teachers and communities to help improve their environment and the Chesapeake Bay. The Trust seeks to increase environmental stewardship through environmental education by providing grants that build and expand pre-K through 12 environmental education programs and increase student access to programs that provide meaningful outdoor learning experiences. These projects can range from outdoor field experiences with students, to rain garden planting, to the installation of living shorelines.

The Chesapeake Bay Trust is now accepting applications for the Environmental Education Grant Program. Grant applicatants can apply for one of two tracks ….

Environmental Literacy Program Development Track:  Applicants may request from $5,001 to $50,000 per year for up to three years (Maximum $150,000 total award). The purpose of Environmental Literacy Program Development proposals is to support the development, pilot, and scale up of comprehensive, systemic, and sustainable environmental literacy programs within local school systems that can serve as model programs.  Applicants to this track should be local school systems or nonprofit organizations working in partnership with local school systems.
Environmental Literacy Program Implementation Track:  Applicants may request $5,001 – $30,000 for one year.   The purpose of Environmental Literacy Program Implementation proposals is to support the expansion and delivery of comprehensive programs to provide Meaningful Watershed Educational Experiences (MWEEs) for students as a component of a school system Environmental Literacy Program.  Successful proposals can include some program development activities with emphasis on the delivery of teacher supported meaningful outdoor learning experiences for students.  These experiences should meet the criteria outlined below which mirror guidance including in the new draft definition Meaningful Watershed Education Experiences.  They should be investigative and project oriented, provide both structured and unstructured outdoor learning experiences, be integrated with classroom instruction, and be part of a sustained program or activity for participating students.  Programs should be contributing to the implementation of environmental literacy programs in local schools and/or school systems and letters of support are strongly encouraged.  Requests for professional development to support MWEE’s and environmental literacy programs are welcome and encouraged.

Please contact Jamie Baxter, jbaxter@cbtrust.org, to discuss which track is more appropriate for your proposal idea. Applicants are strongly encouraged to contact Trust staff to discuss proposals prior to the deadline. Click here for additional details and to download the RFP.  Grants support programs serving Maryland students, teachers and schools. Deadline to apply is December 15th 2014.

Julie Walker is the Chesapeake Research Consortium / Chesapeake Bay Program's Fostering Chesapeake Stewardship Staffer.

Return Flight: Restoring the Bald Eagle to the Channel Islands

August 18th, 2014 by Julie Walker

A new Classroom Study Guide is now available to accompany the PBS documentary, Return Flight: Restoring the Bald Eagle to the Channel Islands. Return Flight aired nationally in 2013 and 2014 on the PBS series Natural Heroes. This documentary shows the plight of Bald Eagles in Southern California from hunting to persecution to DDT contamination. The film documents the inspiring recovery of the Bald Eagle by showing how biologists, government agencies, and the Montrose Settlements Restoration Program (MSRP) have worked together to bring this ancestral bird back to the Channel Islands.
The free Return Flight Classroom Study Guide was developed for middle school, high school, and community college teachers allowing them to delve deeper into the topics introduced in this educational film. The study guide features seven lesson plans that emphasize the relevant concepts of the film and the pressing environmental issues of today’s society. All of the lesson plans begin with several discussion topics followed by a hands-on activity or call to action for students. Each lesson plan is also aligned with Common Core and Next Generation Science Standards allowing for their integration into everyday classroom curriculum.
The guide was developed in partnership with MSRP and Filmmakers Collaborative SF. Learn more about the film and download a free copy of the guide now!

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Julie Walker is the Chesapeake Research Consortium / Chesapeake Bay Program's Fostering Chesapeake Stewardship Staffer.

National Science Teachers Association- New Science Teacher Academy

August 5th, 2014 by Julie Walker
The National Science Teachers Association (NSTA) New Science Teacher Academy is a yearlong program focused on encouraging and supporting early-career science educators. Two leading U.S.-based organizations committed to strengthening the quality of science education in the U.S.—Lockheed Martin and the Bayer USA Foundation—are supporting the new science teachers selected as fellows for the 2014–2015 NSTA New Science Teacher Academy.
Selected fellows will participate in a host of science-related activities and professional learning opportunities, including:
  • A yearlong, discipline-specific mentor
  • Access to facilitated, web-based curriculum devoted to content and classroom pedagogy
  • Membership with full benefits in NSTA
  • Opportunity to participate in a variety of web-based professional learning activities, including web seminars
  • Attendance to the 2015 National Conference on Science Education in Chicago, including paid expenses for air travel, lodging, meals, and registration
  • Attendance at a Professional Development Institute
Fellows will be selected on the basis of several criteria, including showing evidence of a solid science background and displaying a strong interest in growing as a professional science educator. According to a 2003 study by Richard Ingersoll, nearly 50% of beginning teachers leave their jobs in the first five years. The NSTA New Science Teacher Academy endeavors to use mentoring and other professional development resources to support science teachers during the often challenging, initial teaching years and to help them stay in the profession. Since its inception in 2007 the NSTA New Science Teacher Academy has provided high-quality professional learning opportunities to nearly 1000 science teachers nationwide.

Apply Now!

Julie Walker is the Chesapeake Research Consortium / Chesapeake Bay Program's Fostering Chesapeake Stewardship Staffer.

U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan to Honor Green Ribbon Schools and District Sustainability Awardees

July 21st, 2014 by Julie Walker

U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, Acting Chair of the White House Council on Environmental Quality Mike Boots, and Assistant Secretary of the U.S. Department of Commerce Mark Schaefer will honor the U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools and District Sustainability Awardees at 2 p.m. ET on Tuesday, July 22, at the U.S. Department of Commerce in Washington, D.C. At the awards ceremony, Secretary Duncan will also announce the legs of the second annual Green Strides Best Practices Tour.The awardees are recognized for reducing their environmental impact, creating healthy learning environments and fostering wellness practices and providing effective environmental education that prepares students to succeed in the 21st century, including science, technology, mathematics, engineering and civics. Check out a full list of elected schools and districts, as well as their nomination packages here!

This event will be livestreamed at 2 p.m. ET: http://www.ustream.tv/channel/education-department

Get more information about the  Green School pillars and program here, and check out these other resources from the U.S. Department of Education.

Julie Walker is the Chesapeake Research Consortium / Chesapeake Bay Program's Fostering Chesapeake Stewardship Staffer.

Ocean Guardian schools come to Charles County, MD

July 9th, 2014 by Julie Walker

Ocean Guardian is a very successful and extremely popular California-based program that in recent months has expanded to one school in NY and now two in Charles County, Maryland!

NOAA’s Office of National Marine Sanctuaries has just awarded grant funds to Piccowaxen MS and North Point HS to participate in the Ocean Guardian program. An Ocean Guardian school makes a commitment to the protection and conservation of its local watershed, the world’s ocean, and special ocean areas, like National Marine Sanctuaries. The school makes this commitment by proposing and then implementing a school- or community-based conservation projects. Beginning in September, both schools will be conducting hands-on conservation and awareness programs on schoolgrounds, in local watersheds and in community venues.

The Ocean Guardian School program funds these projects focused on a current issue(s) affecting local watersheds and/or the ocean while promoting best environmental practices. Through these school- or community-based project, Ocean Guardian schools work to make a difference in the health and protection of their local watersheds, ocean, and special areas. While  providing learning programs and opportunities that reflect environmentally sustainable practices that enable all students to be environmentally active and committed “Ocean Guardians.”

Julie Walker is the Chesapeake Research Consortium / Chesapeake Bay Program's Fostering Chesapeake Stewardship Staffer.

Teachers on the Estuary, The Wonders of Wetlands and Project WET

June 30th, 2014 by Julie Walker

The 2012 TOTE Teachers & NBNERR staff

Join the Narragansett Bay Research Reserve this summer on beautiful Prudence Island, for a full weekend of hands-on learning. Topics will include estuaries, climate change and water resources. Participants will engage in three different workshops: Teachers on the Estuary (TOTE), The Wonders of Wetlands (WOW!) and Project WET. An abundance of resources will be provided as part of this multi-faceted workshop to help you bring your knowledge back to your classroom or education center.

Participants will arrive late Friday afternoon and stay until Sunday afternoon, for a total of 15 PDP’s. Lodging is available at the Reserve in a modest cottage with dorm-style bedrooms. Meals and lodging cost are covered but participants will be responsible for the cost of their ferry ticket ($8) and parking, if necessary ($10/day).
The majority of the activities will be hands-on or in the field, as the weather allows.We will also spend time reviewing online resources from the NERRS and NOAA as well, including water quality graphing applications and the Estuaries 101 online curriculum for middle and high school.
When: August 8-10, 2014 (late Friday afternoon through Sunday afternoon)
Who Should Register: Many of the activities are geared towards middle and high school teachers, but pre-service and informal educators are welcome to attend.
Co-Hosted By: Narragansett Bay Research Reserve and the RI Department of Environmental Management, Fish & Wildlife Division.
Please contact Maureen Dewire, Education Coordinator for the Research Reserve, with any questions or to register for this workshop. Email: maureen@nbnerr.org; Phone: 401.683.1478
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Julie Walker is the Chesapeake Research Consortium / Chesapeake Bay Program's Fostering Chesapeake Stewardship Staffer.

Explore, Learn, Participate in a Marine Education Fellowship!

June 26th, 2014 by Julie Walker

The Marine Education Fellowship is a program sponsered by Ecology Project International  that brings a select group of educators into the field every year for 8 days of field-science education.

The goals of EPI’s Marine Education Fellowship are 5-fold:

  • Develop familiarity with EPI’s approach to field research and education
  • Revitalize and celebrate dedication to science education
  • Provide unique experiences and activities to take back to the classroom
  • Build a supportive network of educators working towards similar goals
  • Introduce  EPI’s work and promote future student courses to our program sites

The fellowship runs two programs one to Baja Island where participants assist  in cataloging and studying species in the Sea of Cortez in order to understand marine diversity and how to protect it. The Costa Rica Sea Turtle Ecology Program puts participants in contact with marine researchers and leatherback sea turtles in order to study population trends and protect turtle nests from tides, illegal harvesting, and other threats.

Ideal fellowship candidates have a strong background in science education and will be committed to providing experiential learning opportunities for their students. This program is primarily designed for high school teachers. However, 8th grade teachers, college professors, school administrators, and travel program coordinators are welcome to apply.Accepted Fellows pay a $250 tuition fee by Oct. 31, 2014 to secure their participation. All in-country expenses for the fellowship are covered by EPI except international airfare. In-country transportation, meals, lodging, instruction and activity fees are included at no extra cost.

The application period for EPI’s 2015 Marine Education Fellowship is June 24th – September 15th, 2014. Final candidates will be selected in October.

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Julie Walker is the Chesapeake Research Consortium / Chesapeake Bay Program's Fostering Chesapeake Stewardship Staffer.
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