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Raindrop: An Innovative Educational Tool for River Awareness

Funding: 
$259,770
Year: 
2010

This project will create a new educational tool for river awareness in the United States through a mobile device application called Raindrop. Raindrop traces the flow of water from the user's home location to a downstream watershed location. Raindrop is part of a larger installation named FLOW (Can You See the River?), which joins the cognitive power of science with the affective power of the arts by creating virtual and physical spaces for river awareness in the White River watershed in Indianapolis, IN.

This project will create a new educational tool for river awareness in the United States through a mobile device application called Raindrop. Raindrop traces the flow of water from the user's home location to a downstream watershed location. Raindrop is part of a larger installation named FLOW (Can You See the River?), which joins the cognitive power of science with the affective power of the arts by creating virtual and physical spaces for river awareness in the White River watershed in Indianapolis, IN. In addition to the flow path, Raindrop functionality includes watershed context and physical marker mapping, flow path water quality indicators, utilization of NOAA weather feeds and alerts, weather and climate comparisons, storm event size implications, and guidance on watershed restoration actions. Artist-designed physical markers are strategically located in the watershed to direct the virtual user to physical areas of interest.

Competition: 2010: ELG for Informal/Nonformal Education
Award Number: 
NA10SEC0080027
Grant Dates: 
10/01/2010 to 09/30/2013
PI: 
Dr. Timothy Carter
State: Indiana   County: Marion   District: IN07 
Partners:   Indianapolis Museum of Art (IMA), IUPUI's Center for Earth & Environmental Science (CEES), IUPUI's Indianapolis Mapping and Geographic Infrastructure System (IMAGIS), Marian University, City as a Living Laboratory, Office of the Mayor of Indianapolis, Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art, Purdue University / Indiana State Climate Office (Iclimate), Project School, U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) / Indiana Water Science Center, White River Alliance Williams Creek Consulting

Aquarium-wide Climate Change and the Ocean Initiative: Public Engagement from Awareness to Action

Funding: 
$915,885
Year: 
2009

As part of its on-going commitment to engage, inform, and inspire visitors around issues of critical importance to ocean conservation, the Monterey Bay Aquarium opened the nation's first live aquatic animal exhibition on climate change and the ocean. This award supports a comprehensive and integrated suite of associated informal educational activities, designed to extend the exhibit experience and allow visitors to explore this critically important topic in more depth during their visit and after leaving the Aquarium.

As part of its on-going commitment to engage, inform, and inspire visitors around issues of critical importance to ocean conservation, the Monterey Bay Aquarium opened the nation's first live aquatic animal exhibition on climate change and the ocean. This award supports a comprehensive and integrated suite of associated informal educational activities, designed to extend the exhibit experience and allow visitors to explore this critically important topic in more depth during their visit and after leaving the Aquarium. These activities include: community engagement events, virtual reality auditorium programs using Google Earth, musical theater presentations, and exhibit interactives that allow audiences to discuss solutions to ocean issues. Over the course of three years, this initiative will reach more than 4.5 million people and: 1) raise public awareness about the connection between climate change and ocean health; 2) demonstrate that public actions do have an impact on climate change (and therefore ocean health); and 3) encourage meaningful action to address climate change.

Competition: 2009: Ocean Education Grants for AZA Aquariums
Award Number: 
NA09SEC4690040
Grant Dates: 
10/01/2009 to 09/30/2013
PI: 
Ms. Cynthia Vernon
State: California   County: Monterey   District: CA20 

A National Coalition of Aquariums Educating About Climate Change

Funding: 
$505,679
Year: 
2009

This collaboration led by three major national aquariums - Monterey Bay Aquarium (MBAq), National Aquarium in Baltimore (NAIB), and New England Aquarium (NEAq) - is developing a leadership initiative to build capacity within aquariums and related informal science education institutions nation-wide, enabling education staff to engage and inspire millions of visitors to take action about climate change and the ocean.

This collaboration led by three major national aquariums - Monterey Bay Aquarium (MBAq), National Aquarium in Baltimore (NAIB), and New England Aquarium (NEAq) - is developing a leadership initiative to build capacity within aquariums and related informal science education institutions nation-wide, enabling education staff to engage and inspire millions of visitors to take action about climate change and the ocean. The project increases climate literacy among informal science educators by: 1) creating a national network for training, resource sharing and support; 2) developing climate change activity carts to support exhibit interpretation; 3) providing training for youth interpreters; and 4) hosting regional and national summits to strengthen collaboration and showcase and disseminate model programs. Outcomes for educators include increased knowledge of climate change science; knowledge of strategies, tools and materials for educating about climate change; and confidence in their ability to communicate about climate change.

Competition: 2009: Ocean Education Grants for AZA Aquariums
Award Number: 
NA09SEC4690045
Grant Dates: 
10/01/2009 to 03/31/2013
PI: 
Ms. Cynthia Vernon
State: California   County: Monterey   District: CA20 
Partners:   North Carolina Aquarium Society / North Carolina Aquarium on Roanoke Island, California Academy of Sciences, National Aquarium / National Aquarium In Baltimore (NAIB), New England Aquarium Corporation / New England Aquarium (NEAq), Seward Association for the Advancement of Marine Science / Alaska SeaLife Center, Florida Aquarium National Association for Interpretation (NAI)

Teen Conservation Leadership

Funding: 
$453,622
Year: 
2010

Teen Conservation Leadership is a major integration and expansion of the Monterey Bay Aquarium's existing teen education programs (Student Oceanography Club, Young Women in Science and Student Guides).

Teen Conservation Leadership is a major integration and expansion of the Monterey Bay Aquarium's existing teen education programs (Student Oceanography Club, Young Women in Science and Student Guides). The project is growing and enhancing these programs through the following activities: Service Learning and Leadership Activities – including: 1) Guest Service Track: professional development and training as interpreters 2) Camp and Club Track: serving as a mentor for other participants 3) Program Track: assisting in the delivery of programs - Conservation and Science Activities, including participating in and leading projects with local organizations, and participating in technologically facilitated outdoor learning experiences – Teen Network and Technology Activities, including onsite networking and information sharing through Web 2.0 technology The project will reach 930 teens. Each teen will provide 200 service-learning hours per year. The sequential nature of this project will encourage many teens to participate for multiple years.

Competition: 2010: ELG for Informal/Nonformal Education
Award Number: 
NA10SEC0080022
Grant Dates: 
10/01/2010 to 09/30/2013
PI: 
Rita Bell
State: California   County: Monterey   District: CA20 
Partners:   Fresno Chaffee Zoo, Save the Whales Wild Farm Alliance

Building Ocean Awareness Together (BOAT)

Funding: 
$390,249
Year: 
2012

A consortium of Alaska SeaLife Center, Florida Aquarium and Monterey Bay Aquarium with their partner National Association for Interpretation will increase the effectiveness of informal science educators (ISE) to promote public understanding of three complex topics that impact the ocean (oil spills, ocean acidification, and energy literacy) and encourage stewardship of ocean and coastal resources. This project will have a direct impact on 252 interpreters in and around Alaska, California, and Florida through 12 weeklong trainings.

A consortium of Alaska SeaLife Center, Florida Aquarium and Monterey Bay Aquarium with their partner National Association for Interpretation will increase the effectiveness of informal science educators (ISE) to promote public understanding of three complex topics that impact the ocean (oil spills, ocean acidification, and energy literacy) and encourage stewardship of ocean and coastal resources. This project will have a direct impact on 252 interpreters in and around Alaska, California, and Florida through 12 weeklong trainings. Groups of interpreters will develop, assemble and produce online training toolkits, all of which will be widely disseminated to the ISE community. Each toolkit will utilize NOAA multimedia content, data visualization products, expertise and other relevant resources. Project participants – who interact with a diverse mix of local, regional, national and international visitors (including underserved local populations) – will provide enhanced training content for their colleagues through professional trainings, presentations, and online networks.

Competition: 2012: Ocean Education Partnership Grants
Award Number: 
NA12SEC0080025
Grant Dates: 
10/01/2012 to 03/31/2015
PI: 
Ms. Cynthia Vernon
State: California   County: Monterey   District: CA20 
Partners:   Aquarium of the Pacific, California Academy of Sciences, New England Aquarium Corporation / New England Aquarium (NEAq), Seward Association for the Advancement of Marine Science / Alaska SeaLife Center, Florida Aquarium, University Corporation / California State University, Monterey Bay, Association of Zoos and Aquariums, Fresno Chaffee Zoo, National Association for Interpretation (NAI), U.S. National Park Service, Aquarium of the Bay, University of Alaska (UA-Fairbanks), NOAA Office for Coastal Management (OCM) / Pacific Islands, NOAA Earth System Research Laboratory (ESRL), NOAA Climate Program Office (CPO), National Marine Sanctuary (NMS) / Channel Islands, NOAA Office of National Marine Sanctuaries, Woodland Park Zoo, National Marine Sanctuary (NMS) / Florida Keys, NOAA Habitat Conservation, Prince William Sound Science Center (PWSSC), Cook Inlet Regional Citizens Advisory Council (RCAC), NOAA Research Lab / Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory, Oil Spill Recovery Institute (OSRI), Seymour Marine Discovery Center, Point Defiance Zoo and Aquarium, U.S. National Wildlife Refuge / Don Edwards San Francisco Bay, Brookfield Zoo, California State Parks / Point Lobos State Natural Reserve, U.S. National Parks / Golden Gate, Central Coast Aquarium, National Marine Sanctuary (NMS) / Monterey Bay, National Estuarine Research Reserve (NERR) Elkhorn Slough, Pacific Grove Museum of Natural History, Monterey Bay Whale Watch (MB-WW) Coyote Hills Regional Park

Great Lakes Rocks: Earth Systems Science Teacher Professional Development

Funding: 
$426,580
Year: 
2012

The Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago (MSI) offers teacher professional development courses geared toward 4-8th grade teachers in high needs schools and with limited experience in science content. Through the Great Lakes Revealed (GLR) education course, teachers explored the interconnectedness of the Earth’s systems through the unique lens of the Great Lakes region, and learned how climate has changed through time.

The Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago (MSI) offers teacher professional development courses geared toward 4-8th grade teachers in high needs schools and with limited experience in science content. Through the Great Lakes Revealed (GLR) education course, teachers explored the interconnectedness of the Earth’s systems through the unique lens of the Great Lakes region, and learned how climate has changed through time. Through hands-on and inquiry-based activities, MSI Senior Educators guided teacher through lessons and other resources, modeling content and pedagogy best practices, and encouraging knowledge building through a combination of experience, critical thinking and reflection. Participants also interacted with NOAA’s Science on a Sphere, with educators at Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary, and with scientists from Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory. Formal evaluation shows that GLR teachers complete the program with substantially improved content knowledge, teaching skills, and confidence in science teaching, many becoming teacher leaders at their schools. The second stage of the GLR program involves a select group of teachers from the first year’s cohort who will deepen their understanding of climate change in the Great Lakes region by engaging in data-driven problem-based activities. Building on teachers’ content knowledge, this program will help teachers develop mechanisms to search, access, and use high quality tabular, graphical, and visual data to support effective climate change education. NOAA’s Science on a Sphere datasets will play a central role as teachers explore and then develop their own problem-based lessons to deliver to their own students during a Student Summit at MSI.

Competition: 2011/2012:  ELG for Formal K-12 Education
Award Number: 
NA12SEC0080015
Grant Dates: 
08/01/2012 to 07/31/2015
PI: 
Ms. Nicole Kowrach
State: Illinois   County: Cook   District: IL02 
Partners:   Chicago Public Schools (CPS), Illinois Institute of Technology (IIT), University of Wisconsin (UW–Milwaukee), NOAA Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory (GLERL), NOAA Office of National Marine Sanctuaries National Marine Sanctuary (NMS) / Thunder Bay

Teen Advocates for Community and Environmental Sustainability (Teen ACES)

Funding: 
$498,471
Year: 
2016

The Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago (MSI) will develop museum-based education resources to engage high school age youth in the exploration of climate literacy and Earth systems science through its Teen ACES (Teen Advocates for Community and Environmental Sustainability) project. As the future leaders who will make decisions about the issues they face in their communities, youth participants will be positioned to act as advocates for establishing resilient communities in the Midwest.

The Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago (MSI) will develop museum-based education resources to engage high school age youth in the exploration of climate literacy and Earth systems science through its Teen ACES (Teen Advocates for Community and Environmental Sustainability) project. As the future leaders who will make decisions about the issues they face in their communities, youth participants will be positioned to act as advocates for establishing resilient communities in the Midwest. The project will utilize a variety of resources, including NOAA Science On a Sphere® (SOS) technology and datasets, Great Lakes and local climate assets from the Midwest Regional Climate Center and Illinois-Indiana Sea Grant, and existing local planning guides to develop museum-based youth programming. Teens will explore environmental hazards including severe weather events and temperature extremes, and consider the impact of the Great Lakes on regional climate. The Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning, Resilient Chicago, the Institute of Environmental Sustainability at Loyola University Chicago, and the South Metropolitan Higher Education Consortium will advise on the project to support the integration of municipal resiliency plans and their related adaptation and mitigation measures into the program. Teen participants will share their learning with the Chicago community through interactions with public visitors in the Museum, programs at Chicago Public Library branches, and MSI’s teen science program broadcast on Chicago’s public access TV station. Teen facilitated experiences will be tailored for SOS® experiences at MSI. The project will revise content for use in 100 after-school science clubs for students from diverse communities across the Chicago area. Further dissemination to three regional science center partners equipped with SOS® technology (Boonshoft Museum of Discovery in Dayton, Ohio; Science Central in Fort Wayne, Indiana; and Hawthorn Hollow in Kenosha, Wisconsin) will build a foundation of knowledge and resources to adapt materials to meet the needs of their communities and consider how their vulnerabilities and resiliency plans may differ from Chicago.

Competition: 2016: ELG for Community Resilience to Extreme Weather Events and Environmental Hazards
Award Number: 
NA16SEC0080001
Grant Dates: 
10/01/2016 to 09/30/2020
PI: 
Mr. Marvin McClure
State: Illinois   County: Cook   District: IL02 
Partners:   Dayton Society of Natural History / Boonshoft Museum of Discovery, Science Central, National Sea Grant College Program / University of Illinois, Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning (CMAP), Chicago Public Library (CPL), Chicago Access Network Television (CAN TV), Hawthorn Hollow Nature Sanctuary & Arboretum, Loyola University, Moraine Valley Community College, NOAA Regional Climate Center / Midwestern Regional Climate Center, City of Chicago, City of Chicago / Chicago Park District Chapin Hall at the University of Chicago