The NASA Earth Science Education Collaborative (NESEC) is building pathways between NASA’s Earth STEM assets to large, diverse audiences in order to enhance K-12 teaching and learning, and opportunities for lifelong learners. STEM assets include subject matter experts, science and engineering content, and authentic STEM experiences.
NESEC is a partnership between the Institute for Global Environmental Strategies (IGES) and NASA Earth science divisions at three NASA Centers: Goddard Space Flight Center, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, and Langley Research Center.
What does your team hope to achieve?
NESEC is enabling STEM education by creating engaging, meaningful, and authentic STEM experiences and resources that are based on NASA Earth science, suitable for a wide range of learners, and delivered broadly through strategic partnerships. Our interrelated activities include:
GLOBE Student Research Campaigns: NESEC is leading two K-12 student research campaigns in collaboration with the international GLOBE program - 1) El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) (www.globe.gov/web/el-nino/el-nino-campaign) and 2) U.S. Air Quality. The goal is for students to collect and use science data to conduct research projects and collaborate with other GLOBE schools, while fostering connections to NASA scientists and science, e.g., through webinars, blogs, and focused interactions.
GLOBE Observer: Citizen scientists of all ages can participate in NASA science by making and submitting environmental observations to this international program through an easy-to-use app. GLOBE Observer (http://observer.globe.gov) currently includes Clouds - citizen scientists photograph clouds and make sky observations, which can be compared with NASA satellite observations. The team is developing additional citizen science tools including Mosquitoes (mapping potential breeding sites) and Land Cover.
Connections to Learners through Partners: To further increase the project’s reach and impact, NESEC is working to develop, promote, and facilitate the use of NASA Earth science content through the broad dissemination channels of strategic partners. For example, the team is expanding the participation of key audiences by leveraging partnerships with 4-H and the Association of Science-Technology Centers (ASTC). External partners also include Odyssey of the Mind, an international creative problem-solving competition, and collaborations fostered across the NASA SMD collective of education projects and networks.
Project Web Site
“It means a lot to students to get to talk to NASA scientists, they are more motivated and their work becomes very meaningful if NASA is involved.” –middle school science teacher