NOAA Planet Stewards, The Watch – January 2020!

Image Banner

News you can use from NOAA Planet Stewards 

I like the dreams of the future better than the history of the past.

– Thomas Jefferson

A belated Happy New Year to you all! Wishing you a wonderful 2020.

May all your dreams for the future come true!

Planet Stewards Education Program Connection Links

Did a colleague or friend share this copy of The Watch with you? After you thank them, make sure to sign up and receive it directly from NOAA Planet Stewards.

PS News

Planet Stewards Book Club

Great Lakes book

Tuesday, January 21st, 8pm Eastern Time

Dial Toll Free 1-866-662-7513 followed by passcode 1170791#

Join the next Planet Stewards book club will discuss the acclaimed book by Dan Egan, The Death and Life of the Great Lakes. A description of the book and questions for the discussion are posted on the Planet Stewards’ website.  Join the discussion!

February and March event dates and books:

NOAA Needs Your Input!


NOAA wants to know what formal and informal educators are looking for in STEM multimedia and distance learning tools for use with students, and for their own professional development. Take this short poll and let us know how NOAA can help you!  Please share this poll with your colleagues and networks. Thank you!


FIVE:  NOAA Latest Story Map

NOAA in Seattle, NOAA’s latest story map, visits its efforts in their home port in the Pacific Northwest. From innovative urban restoration and amazing stock recovery, to a pioneering journey around Antarctica and even CO2 monitoring from atop the iconic Space Needle, this story map is a page-turner.  Take a look and discover new reasons to take pride in NOAA’s vital work!


Ocean's Today video

In 2019, NOAA made some amazing underwater discoveries. Watch our favorite footage from 2019 in Ocean Today’s newest video. Also check out NOAA's Multimedia Discovery Mission Demos  and complimentary lessons - a series of 14 interactive multimedia presentations and activities that address topics ranging from Chemosynthesis, Hydrothermal Vent Life and Deep-sea Benthos to Food, Water and Medicine from the Sea.


JetStream is NOAA's National Weather Service Online Weather School. This site is designed to help educators, emergency managers, or anyone interested in learning about weather and weather safety. Check out JetStream for excellent weather curriculum.


TWO: NOAA Fisheries Best Ocean Stories, Videos & Photos of 2019

Dive into a recap of NOAA National Marine Fisheries best stories and multimedia from 2019 that encompass sharks, sea turtles, whales, and more!

NOS videos

ONE: NOAA's National Ocean Service 2019 Year In Review

In The Watch's first issue of 2020 we celebrate the outstanding accomplishments across NOAA's National Ocean Service, which houses the NOAA Planet Stewards program. Explore their many accomplishments in the 2019 Year in Review.


Love to learn about NOAA, its science, and programs? Make sure to review the OneNOAA webinar schedule regularly, then signup to attend webinars that interest you. See the upcoming OneNOAA Science Seminar calendar here.

Educator opportunities

Webinar: Improving coastal resiliency through vulnerability assessment and natural adaptation prioritization

coastal resilience

Date/Time: Tuesday, January 21, 2 pm US EST

The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, NOAA, the US Army Corps of Engineers, NatureServe, and the National Environmental Modeling and Analysis Center. recently assessed the vulnerability of US coasts to flooding threats and identified areas of natural value or potential to provide resiliency to human assets and populations. This webinar will present results from seven “targeted watersheds” across the nation. The work included extensive stakeholder engagement via workshops and webinars, and produced reports, data packages, and decision support systems for each watershed. Register here....

Efward C. Roy, Jr. Award for Excellence in K-8th Earth Science Teaching


With applications due on January 22, 2020, now is the time to apply for the the prestigious Edward C. Roy, Jr. Award for Excellence in K-8 Earth Science Teaching. View a two-minute webcast that provides an overview of the competition. The winner will receive a $2,500 prize and a travel grant of $1,000 to attend the National Science Teaching Association's Annual Conference in April 2020 to accept the award. To learn more, teachers should visit online. You also can view the webcast today.

Free course! Collecting Data to Explore Plastic Pollution


Follow National Geographic Explorers in the Sea to Source and Mount Everest Expeditions as they carefully collect data to track plastic pollution in the Ganges River and document climate change in Mount Everest. Hone your skills in guiding your students to design and select data collection methods that explore problems in their communities.

Audience: Formal and informal educators - all subjects, all grade levels; Dates February 5–March 17, 2020.

Toshiba ExploraVision!


Since 1992, nearly 400,000 students have participated in the Toshiba/National Science Teaching Association ExploraVision competition. A teacher guides their student(s) as they pick a current technology, research it, envision what it might look like in 20 years, and describe the development steps, pros & cons, and obstacles.Click here To download an ExploraVision brochure.

envir course

Online Environmental Education Outcomes Course 2/11 - 3/17/2020

Participants in this course will explore different environmental education goals and methods for reaching those goals effectively. As a course participant, you become part of an international community of environmental educators.  Learn more here and register.


Webinar: A New Coast: Strategies for Responding to Devastating Storms and Rising Seas


Presented by: Jeffrey Peterson, author of A New Coast: Strategies for Responding to Devastating Storms and Rising Seas

Date/Time: Thursday, February 13, 1 pm US EST

 Due to climate change, devastating storms and sea level rise will increasingly threaten vibrant communities, critical infrastructure, and vital natural systems. This webinar will present actionable policy guidance for how governments, businesses, and engaged citizens can work together to prepare for a changing coast. NOAA is a Co-sponsor. Register here...

students class

Sixth Annual Cal Water H2O Challenge—Deadline: January 31

cal water

The Cal Water H2O Challenge is back for its sixth year with $10,000 available in educational grant prizes, and the registration deadline is approaching fast - 1/31/2020! The program has been developed in collaboration with the North American Association for Environmental Education (NAAEE). The Cal Water H2O Challenge is a free, Common-Core aligned competition, complementary to NGSS, that teaches students about caring for water and the environment. 

Georgia Sixth annual Youth Ocean Conservation Summit

youth conservation

UGA Marine Extension and Georgia Sea Grant will host the state’s sixth annual Youth Ocean Conservation Summit (YOCS) for students grades 6-12 on Saturday, Feb. 15, 2020 on Skidaway Island near Savannah. Online registration closes January 31, 2020.

The Summit is limited to 50 students on a first-come, first-served basis. A $20 registration fee includes lunch and all materials. Register online be visiting here. Teachers who wish to accompany student groups may also register as participants. Email for further information.

eco comedy

Sponsored by the Center for Environmental Filmmaking and The Nature Conservancy, the 2020 Eco-Comedy Video Competition theme will be Clean Air and Clean Water. Produce a short (less than three minutes), humorous video that would be seen on YouTube to engage audiences in these topics. The contest is open to anyone worldwide who has a flair for producing videos. The winner in each category will receive cash prizes, plus recognition at the DC Environmental Film Festival, and on the websites of the Center for Environmental Filmmaking and The Nature Conservancy.


Student Interns sought for the Nautilus Explorer

Applications to sail as a paid intern on the Nautilus in 2020 are open now for students! Students can learn about internships here All internships include a paid stipend. Applicants sho   uld be enrolled in or recently graduated from a community college, undergraduate or graduate program in ocean science, technology, or related fields.


Do you want to attend the #NMEA20 annual conference in Honolulu in July 2020 and could you use some financial assistance to attend? There are currently three different types of scholarships available: 

  1. NMEA  member-only scholarships, 
  2. Expanding Audiences scholarships, and 
  3. Traditional Knowledge scholarships. See our Scholarships page for more information.

All scholarship nominations and applications are due by February 15, 2020, and applicants are usually notified by mid-March, so that everyone can register by the NMEA annual conference early-bird registration deadline!

NMEA is also pleased to announce Current: The Journal of Marine Education, which is to be relaunched in to its new online, open access format with Ubiquity Press! NMEA’s first online and open access issue (Winter 2020) will be released in the new year. Subscribe here.

Ocean Sciences Meeting 2020 - sponsored by AGU, ASLO and TOS

The Ocean Sciences Meeting (OSM) is the flagship conference for the ocean sciences and the larger ocean-connected community. It will be held in San Diego from Feb. 16th to 21st, 2020. This meeting provides attendees the opportunity to bridge disciplines, connect communities, and make lasting partnerships. Learn more and/or register here.


education resources

Datasets for Understanding Cities, Change, and Urban Impacts


World Resource Institute (WRI) recently released its  updated and expanded topic page featuring the latest data visualizations and maps on the state of the world’s cities. WRI Ross Center for Sustainable Cities worked with Resource Watch to provide key datasets for understanding how cities are changing and how they impact people’s lives and the planet. The new topic page sheds light on the many factors that influence how cities grow and how we can make them more sustainable. See it here.

BioInteractive: Real science, real stories, and real data to engage students in exploring the living world


Have you seen the new BioInteractive site? It was relaunched this past summer with a lot of features, including personalized accounts, resource playlists, Storyline Viewer, and an Educator Voices section. Discover tools to help plan lessons and opportunities to support professional learning. Also see their free video, Inventing Tomorrow, which follows young scientists from Indonesia, Hawaii, India, and Mexico as they tackle some of the most complex environmental issues facing humanity today — right in their own backyards. Receive your complimentary copy of this inspiring film, produced by Howard Hughes Medical Institute's Tangled Bank Studios.

Free Series on Salmon from NOAA Fisheries

An incredible journey

NOAA Fisheries West Coast Region invites you to download our FREE series on salmon, use it to connect your students to their local watersheds, and share your feedback with them. 

  • An Incredible Journey curriculum for grades 4-5 has 10 excellent lesson plans on everything from the salmon life cycle; its cultural, environmental, and economic importance; and major issues facing salmon today.
  • The Salmon Survival board game involves the salmon life cycle and how people are protecting and conserving this iconic species. (Available in Spanish.)
  • An Incredible Journey Children’s book (also in Spanish) introduces the species, its life cycle, and issues involving it today along with six case studies that show how people are making a difference in its conservation.

Carbon Sequestration Activity in Campus Trees

(Source: NOAA’s


In this activity, students use a spreadsheet to calculate the net carbon sequestration in a set of trees; they will utilize an allometric approach based upon parameters measured on the individual trees. They determine the species of trees in the set, measure trunk diameter at a particular height, and use the spreadsheet to calculate carbon content of the tree using forestry research data. Available at Carleton College’s SERC website.

GOOD NEWS TO KNOW : Jobs and Grant News

  • The NOAA Ship Okeanos Explorer Explorer in Training program is a rare opportunity to gain practical, hands on experience in seafloor mapping in the offshore environment on a NOAA ship! Applications are now being accepted for the 2020 field season (March-October 2020). Undergraduate and graduate students, and recent graduates are encouraged to apply. Application deadline is January 31, 2020.
  • California State University Monterey Bay is now accepting applications for their 2020 summer REU (Research Experiences for Undergraduates) program. Students will be provided with a $5,000 stipend in addition to support for travel, room and board. The application portal will close on February 01, 2020 at 11:59 PM PST. The 10 week summer program will run from June 7th to August 15th, 2020. Additional program details can be found on the program homepage.

  • NOAA is excited to be working with the North American Association for Environmental Education (NAAEE) to offer NOAA-21st Century Community Learning Centers Watershed STEM Education Partnership Grants. These grants will enable experienced environmental education providers to work with 21st CCLC sites to deliver authentic STEM experiences emphasizing the unique assets and expertise of NOAA. Applications are due 2/6/20. See the NAAEE website for the full Request for Proposals and application.
  • The Mississippi-Alabama Sea Grant Consortium, in collaboration with NOAA’s Office for Coastal Management and the Gulf of Mexico Climate and Resilience Community of Practice (CoP), is seeking coastal communities to participate in climate adaptation projects that will serve as local examples for other Gulf communities through a small grant award. Submit a Letter of Intent (LOI) by February 28, 2020. Click here for Submission Guidelines.

  • Ocean Matters is proud to announce a partnership with the prestigious Bow Seat Ocean Awareness Programs, which is generously providing one full scholarship ($3,500 value) to an Ocean Awareness Contest applicant from Florida to participate in our Ocean Matters’ Florida Marine Ecology Expedition, June 19-29, 2020! Deadline: Mar 1 for submission to Bow Seat and March 15th for submission to Ocean Matters.

  • Masters research project looking for volunteers at how card games and Sci-Art can be combined to help people understand issues around flooding and climate change! Learn more and take part in the study and signup. Its free and participants will receive a free gift at the end!:

Planet Stewards jpg