We use partnerships to maximize our impact beyond grants. The Environmental Literacy Program supports long-term partnerships that enable the education community to incorporate and deliver NOAA's latest scientific information on the topics of the ocean, coasts, weather and climate. These are mutually beneficial relationships. Our partners have a proven track record in K-12 and informal education and the ability to leverage NOAA expertise and products to enrich their offerings. In turn, NOAA leverages their education capabilities to reach diverse audiences in new ways.
The American Meteorological Society (AMS) Datastreme program comprises K-12 teacher professional development in atmospheric, ocean and climate sciences. Through a national network of local implementation teams, AMS offers semester-long courses to K-12 teachers using weather, climate, and the ocean as contexts for teaching science and improving understanding about the Earth system among K-12 teachers and their students. These courses focus on topics relevant to NOAA’s mission, incorporate NOAA data and data products, and involve NOAA personnel.
The Coastal Ecosystem Learning Center (CELC) Network is a consortium of 25 aquariums and marine science education centers located in the United States, Canada, and Mexico. From art contents and youth summits to multi-institution projects, the CELC Network works together to engage the public in protecting coastal and marine ecosystems. By coordinating CELC, NOAA’s Office of Education is able to reach over 20 million people across North America, while providing leadership and resources to its members.
NOAA has a long-term partnership with San Francisco's Exploratorium that spans all aspects of the agency's mission. Begun in 2009 and motivated by the Exploratorium's 2013 move to their over-the-water location on Pier 15, NOAA scientists help exhibit developers and educators understand and interpret NOAA’s data, advise on instruments to install to collect environmental data, and provide public presentations on their work. NOAA’s research ships regularly dock at the Exploratorium allowing NOAA Corps to conduct tours of ships and on-board scientists to explain the ship’s scientific mission to visitors and Exploratorium employees. This partnership allows NOAA to explore and deploy new methods of presenting the work of the Agency in a proven educational setting with unique facilities and capacities.
The GLOBE Program is a worldwide, hands-on science and education program. GLOBE empowers students, teachers, scientists and the public to collaborate on inquiry-based investigations of the environment. NOAA supports GLOBE in close partnership with the sponsoring agencies, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration and the National Science Foundation. GLOBE utilizes NOAA data and expertise in ocean and atmospheric science, while providing tools that support the study of these systems.
The National Ocean Sciences Bowl, managed by the Consortium for Ocean Leadershipoffsite link, is a nationally recognized and highly acclaimed high school academic competition that addresses a national gap in high school access to environmental and Earth sciences. The NOSB fills this gap by providing a forum for talented students to test their knowledge of the biology, chemistry, physics, and geology of the ocean and introduces them to ocean-related careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. The competition was created in 1998 in honor of the International Year of the Ocean and has grown to include 25 regional competitionsoffsite link with over 275 schools and 1,800 students participating annually. Since its inception, NOAA has supported the NOSB both financially and through staff participation in regional and national competitions.
Ocean Discovery Institute uses ocean science to empower young people from underserved urban communities to transform their lives, their community, and our world as scientific and conservation leaders. NOAA shares its scientific expertise, educational resources, and other assets to support this San Diego-based organization in providing scientifically rigorous programs that also build leadership skills within a context relevant to the community being served. Through this partnership, Ocean Discovery Institute and NOAA are demonstrating effective, long-term strategies for engaging and retaining underserved youth in fields of conservation and science, technology, engineering and mathematics.
NOAA's Office of Education supports a network of institutions that use NOAA's Science On a Sphere® as a science education tool. Science On a Sphere is a spherical display system that uses four computer-driven video projectors to display images on a smooth, white, six-foot-diameter, carbon-fiber sphere. Over 100 institutions worldwide that reach more than 60 million visitors annually comprise the network. NOAA supports these institutions through face-to-face workshops and digital collaboration tools to facilitate the sharing of best practices among members who are discovering new and innovative approaches in using the sphere for science education as well as to inform NOAA's Earth System Research Lab on how to further develop the system to support these approaches.
NOAA has an active collaboration with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and the National Science Foundation (NSF) around synergistic funding that the three agencies have provided to support projects that increase public understanding of climate science and improve the quality and effectiveness of climate change education in formal and informal learning environments. Over 120 climate education projects are coordinated through a collaborative network that facilitates communication among this community of scientists and educators. The network promotes sharing of successes, challenges and evaluation findings and thereby maximizes leveraging of resources and minimizes duplication of effort. Several products have emerged from this collaborative, including a common logic model and a searchable catalog of educational products and resources generated by these climate education projects.