The Watch. News You Can Use From NOAA Planet Stewards - 1 December 2020

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News you can use from NOAA Planet Stewards 



Advice from the Ocean for Coral Week:

"Be shore of yourself. Come out of your shell.
Take time to relax and coast. Avoid pier pressure.
Sea life's beauty. Don't get tide down.
Make waves!"



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Join Us for Planet Stewards Bookclub in December!


Join us on Monday  December 21 at 8pm ET to discuss   Supernavigators: Exploring the Wonders of How Animals   Find Their Way by David Barrie

Animals plainly know where they’re going, but how they know has remained a stubborn mystery—until now.  David Barrie consults animal behaviorists and Nobel Prize–winning scientists to catch us up on the cutting edge of animal intelligence—revealing these wonders in a whole new light.

In January, we'll read Blackfish City, a young adult fiction book and have the author join us! This might be a great opportunity for  students to read and join in the discussion as well! 

Find the entire book schedule for 2020/2021 and information on how to join each meeting. Check out our Book Club Archives with book selections and discussion questions from previous Book Clubs. Everyone is always welcome!

A special thanks for all our frequent bookclub participants who've sparked many great conversations and also have been a lot of fun! Hope to see you in December.


FIVE: NOAA launches Mission: Iconic Reefs to save Florida Keys Coral 

diver in coral

Florida Key's coral reefs, like coral reefs across the globe, are in serious trouble. NOAA and its partners are launching Restoring Seven Iconic Reefs: A Mission to Recover the Coral Reefs of the Florida Keys, one of the largest investments in reef restoration anywhere in the world.

By restoring corals at seven iconic reef sites in Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary, NOAA can change the trajectory of an entire ecosystem and help save one of the world’s most unique areas for future generations. Find out about the project and its restoration work here

FOUR: Diverse Scientists and Unusual Coral at Flower Garden Banks

black Coral

Read about a new species of black coral discovered at NOAA's Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary. The unusual black coral was discovered in 2016, collected in 2017, and verified as a new species in a journal article in October. The discovery team included a group of undergraduate minority student researchers and their professor from City University of New York. The team contributed to the collection and genetic characterization of the species.

Check out information on Coral Spawning from NOAA's Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary as well. Every August, the reef-building corals there put on a fantastic spawning display!

THREE: Ocean Today: Every Full Moon – Coral Comeback! Videos

coral comeback

Corals are amazing. But we have lost 50% of the world's coral reefs. Can corals make a comeback? Watch this inspiring video series from NOAA to find out how here.

TWO: NOAA Ocean Podcast, From Diving to Data: Close-up with Coral Research

noaa ocean podcast

NOAA’s National Coral Reef Monitoring Program (NCRMP) is a massive, collaborative effort that was developed to collect scientifically sound, geographically comprehensive biological, climate, and socioeconomic data in U.S. coral reef areas. In this episode of NOAA Ocean Podcast, hear from Shay Viehman, a Research Ecologist with NOAA’s National Ocean Service in the National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science to learn how NOAA divers turn the data they collect from underwater missions into usable summaries that help scientists study and protect U.S. coral reef ecosystems. Listen to the podcast here.

ONE: 20th Anniversary of NOAA’s Coral Reef Conservation Program

coral palau

The Coral Reef Conservation Act was signed into law on December 23, 2000, establishing NOAA's Coral Reef Conservation Program. For 20 years, it has brought together expertise from across NOAA and its partners to protect, conserve, and restore the nation’s coral reef ecosystems. Learn more about  Coral Reef Conservation Program in this video from NOAA and at the program's website here.

OneNOAA Seminars

Love to learn about NOAA, its science, and programs? Check out these upcoming webinars from the OneNOAA Seminar Series - the most complete and integrated summary of NOAA science and climate seminars across the nation. The OneNOAA Science Seminar Calendar can be viewed here.  All seminars are posted in Eastern Time and subject to change without notice; Seminars are open to the public via remote access.

Register for the weekly list of upcoming NOAA science webinars here. Future seminars include, but are not limited to:

See all OneNOAA Seminars here.

Seminar recordings, and sometimes PDFs of the PowerPoints are available thru the point of contact listed for each seminar.

Educator opportunities

Webinar: From NOAA and NSTA – Science Update! The Unknown World of Deep Sea Corals

Thursday, December 3, 2020, 7:00 PM to 8:00 PM ET

deep sea coral

Deep-sea corals live in some of the least studied ecosystems on the planet yet provide crucial support for fisheries and a number of other ecosystem services. Dr. Heather Coleman, Coordinator of NOAA's Deep Sea Coral Research and Technology Program, will discuss little-known deep-sea coral facts and teaching tools. Policies the US has created to protect deep-sea coral habitats from damage will also be discussed. Upon registering you will receive an e-mail confirmation including additional information about the web seminar. Register and obtain more info Here!

Announcing Into the Blue Book Club from REEF

Thursday, December 10th, 8pm ET 

Have you heard? The Reef Environmental Education Foundation (REEF) has a new book club! Into the Blue brings together readers who love the ocean and conservation. The REEF book club will meet virtually on Thursday, December 10, 2020, at 8 PM EST to discuss What a Fish Knows: The Inner Lives of Our Underwater Cousins by Jonathan Balcombe. The author will join the meeting for a Q&A, so make sure to read all about the secret lives of fish before then and join Into the Blue! Register to join here.

what a fish knows

Webinar: An Evening With Rita Colwell – Science, Sexism, and the Fight against the Status Quo

Wednesday, December 2, 5-6 pm ET


“If you think sexism only thrives in Hollywood, you haven’t visited a a science department...” says scientist Rita Colwell, a pioneering microbiologist and the first woman to lead the National Science Foundation. 

Dr. Colwell will discuss her new book, A Lab of One’s Own: One Woman’s Personal Journey Through Sexism in Science, from her start as a graduate student at Purdue University through leading thousands of scientists investigating the impacts of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. This program is presented in partnership with the Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative (GoMRI) and will be presented as a Zoom video webinar. A link will be emailed to all registrants. Register Here…

Join December En-ROADS Update Webinar

Thursday, December 3, 7-8 am ET or 2-3 pm ET


Climate Interactive Co-Director Andrew Jones will walk through all of the newest features and updates to the climate model used in the  climate roleplaying game that creates accessible, scientifically rigorous tools that help people see connections, play out scenarios, and address the biggest challenge humanity faces. .En-ROADS will be launching an updated version in December. This will mark the biggest update to En-ROADS since it was release last year — please join to hear all about it. Sign up for the webinar.

Webinar and Virtual Workshop from Junior Sea Doctors: 

   Learn to implement Explore the Salish Sea Curriculum 

  Thursday, December 3, 2020 3:30-5:30pm via Zoom

salish sea

Learn how to implement SeaDoc Society's Explore the Salish Sea curriculum in the long-awaited SeaDoc Workshop. Receive hands-on, standards-aligned Salish Sea-based lesson plans for 4-8th grade students, based on the best-selling book, Explore the Salish Sea: A Nature Guide for Kids. 

Register here:  You will receive a secure Zoom link via email.

Student opportunities

Antarctica Week Webinars for students!

Monday, November 30 to Friday, December 4


Antarctica Week Festival 2020 is an exciting opportunity to bring Antarctica to students! Listen to multiple people from those working on the International Thwaites Glacier Collaboration talk about what it's like to live and work in Antarctica.There are two talks daily (ten talks in total!) that span across different interests and age groups.   All of the talks require pre-registration which, along with full information, can be found here: All talks will be recorded and posted on afterwards.

GLOBE Air Quality Campaign Webinar Series


Audience: Educators, Parents, Caregivers, Students and Citizen Scientists of All Ages

Join the Global Learning and Observations to Benefit the Environment (GLOBE) Program for a webinar series about the new “GLOBE U.S. Student Air Quality Campaign.” Join one or all of the sessions listed below. Click the session title to register.

Dec. 1 at 4 p.m. EST: How Do Satellites Add to the Air
Quality Story?

Dec. 15 at 4 p.m. EST: How Do Ground Observations
Enhance the Air Quality Story?

Jan. 12 at 4 p.m. ESTHow To Tell Your Air Quality Story

Webinar Series: CIRES/NOAA Science@Home Speaker Series

Tuesdays at 3 PM ET

MAtt Burgess, CIRES

The CIRES/NOAA Science@Home speaker series connects middle and high school students and classrooms that are now in the virtual/remote learning landscape with scientists

Science@Home: Environmental Economics in a Polarized World w/ Matt Burgess will take place this Tuesday at 3 pm ET. Burgess is an Assistant Professor in Environmental Studies, with a courtesy appointment in Economics. His research focuses on natural resource management, endangered species conservation, and issues in global sustainability. He uses a combination of mathematical and computer modeling, data synthesis, and collaboration with stakeholders, in order to make conceptual advances and link them to practice.

Join the livestream. For the full schedule, also in Spanish, go to the CIRES website

Webinar: NOAA Live! Dive In and Explore Coral Reef Ecosystems

On Demand on YouTube


Coral reefs are the rainforests of the ocean. They are beautiful, diverse, and extremely important for healthy ocean ecosystems and strong communities. Engage your elementary students (Grades 2-6 but all ages will enjoy) as they learn all about coral reef ecosystems, why they matter, and what you can do to help them. This webinar is brought to you by NOAA's Coral Reef Conservation Program in West Palm Beach, FL, Sea Grant, and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution! Access it here at any time!

Webinar: NOAALive! on Wednesday, December 2nd, 4 pm - 4:45 pm MST

This Wednesday join NOAA Live! for Saving Corals: A Day in the Life of a Coral Reef Scientist with Derek Manzello, NOAA's Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratory. Register here

Also available: NOAA Live! Alaska webinars on Tuesdays at 11 am AKT for grades 2nd - 8th. Join NOAA Live! Alaska! here.

Webinar: Black in Marine Science Empowerment Panel

Thursday, December 3, 2020  12:00 pm — 1:00 pm

women in marine science

Join Mote Marine Laboratory for an online event to learn more about what it means to be Black in Marine Sciences from panelists Jasmin Graham - Shark Science; Amanda Hodo - Aquarium Science; Alex Troutman - Wetland Ecology; and Jeanette Davis - Marine Microbiologist

Educators and students can register for direct access to the panel. Contact MarSci-LACE for details. The public can watch this event streamed live on YouTube:

Format: Zoom webinar and YouTube Livestream. Find More Details here…

Video for Students: Mapping Urban Heat Islands w/ Tom DiLiberto | TEDxYouth

heat island

Tom Di Liberto is a climate scientist and science communicator at NOAA’s Climate Program Office, and the consulting climatologist for NOAA’s website. He works on communication strategy, writes articles about climate events and climate research done at NOAA, and he is also a member of NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center’s El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) team. Dr. Di Liberto’s talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. It's available here on YouYube. SOURCE: TEDxTalks

See "Urban Heat Island Campaign" below under "Grants, Contests, Campaigns"

Pacific Coral Reef Coloring Book

corals in Pacific islands

The blend of the Hawaiian and Samoan tapa design in this coloring book illustrates its underlying theme: that the vast distances between islands in the Pacific are bridged by the cultures of the people and the natural resources of the coral reef. The Polynesian culture evolved in the world of the coral reef. Their appreciation of the life found in the reef ecosystem comes from millennia of dependence on the reef for their livelihood. Download it for students' use here.

See the Bow Seat 2020 Ocean Awareness Contest Winners

award-winning art

The 2020 Ocean Awareness Contest, "Climate Hope: Transforming Crisis," invited middle and high school students from around the world to learn about climate change and solutions, and create work that explores hope in action. More than 5,300 students from 92 countries and 49 U.S. states responded with paintings, poems, songs, documentaries, dances, animations, apps, stories & more.

The 350+ winning pieces were selected by a team of judges comprising artists, ocean scientists, writers, filmmakers, and educators. Bow Seat awarded over $83,000 in prizes to winning participants. To view, read, watch, and share the 2020 Ocean Awareness Contest winners, visit!

2021 Ocean Awareness Contest is accepting submissions through June 14, 2021. For complete details, including resources for educators, visit the Ocean Awareness Contest Overview >

One Earth Student Competition for Ages 13 and Up


The One Earth Award offers $1,000 scholarships for four students whose art and writing address human-caused climate change. All students in grades 7–12 (ages 13 and up) are eligible to participate. The deadline for art submissions is Jan 7, 2021 and writing submissions is Dec 4, 2020. Learn more>

Ed Resources

Corals 101 Tutorial from NOAA

coral polyps

This corals tutorial is an overview of the biology of and threats to coral reefs, as well as efforts being made to conserve and protect them. It includes images, animations, and videos.

The Roadmap to Resources complements the tutorial. It directs you to specific online coral data and information from NOAA. It is also an online resource in NSTA's SciLinks databaseSciLinks provide students and teachers access to Web-based, educationally appropriate science content that has been formally evaluated by master teachers.

NOAA Satellite and Information Services Brings Us Coral Reef Watch

coral bleaching hotspots

Coral Reef Watch (CRW) is a program in NOAA's National Environmental Satellite, Data, and Information Service (NESDIS) Center. It uses satellite observations to monitor and predict coral reef environments to help resource managers, scientists, and other stakeholders observe, study, manage, protect, and restore the world's coral reef ecosystems. 

This tutorial is designed for students, teachers, and everyone who want to learn more about coral reefs and satellite remote sensing technology. Multiple lessons address the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) for use in the classroom. Find the Coral Reef Watch tutorial here.

Sea Level Rise Resources from NASA


NASA measures sea level around the globe using satellites, specifically the Jason-3 satellite using radio waves and other instruments every 10 days, Learn about how this is done and other important sea level facts via these NASA sites:


Seneca’s Science Virtual Learning and Homework Platform


This website features science education resources and online courses for grades 2–12. The platform uses a “smart algorithm,” to identify an individual’s specific learning gaps. As students work through the units in each course, teachers track students’ learning progress and can use the resulting data to create differentiated teaching plans and assign relevant homework tasks for individual students or the entire class. All the science courses are exam standard–specific and support the Next Generation Science Standards. Register for a free account to preview the available courses.

CADRE Spotlight: Analyzing and Interpreting Data Across STEM Disciplines

leaf activity

Community for Advancing Discovery Research in Education (CADRE) is a network for STEM education researchers funded by the National Science Foundation. The network connects researchers working on initiatives to improve education in STEM and publishes materials to communicate information on important themes in STEM education. While most projects target middle and high school levels, several projects target data skills at the elementary level. Check out the network and its projects here.

Digital Computational Thinking Curriculum for Middle Schoolers

computational thinking

Designed by Discovery Education and Tata Consultancy Services, Ignite My Future in School is a transdisciplinary digital curriculum to engage students in computational thinking strategies across core subject areas. The curriculum features 40 standards-based, digital activities emphasizing the components of computational thinking, which include processes such as collecting data, analyzing data, finding patterns, and more.Activities can be searched by computational thinking strategy, core subject, or guiding question. Find activities here.  

Climate Science, Risk and Solutions: Climate Knowledge for Everyone


Massachusetts Institute of Technology's (MIT) Environmental Solutions Initiative offers an interactive climate change primer written by Kerry Emanuel, a professor in MIT’s Department of Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences. The online document aims to answer these questions: How do we know climate change is occurring and that it’s caused by humans? How strong is the evidence? What are the expected risks, and what can we do about them? Find it here!

Also from MIT: MIT Open Ocean Seminar: Revolutionizing Ocean Data; Dec 7, 2020 1:30 PM ET

NOAA Story Map: Probing the Unknown

This year, NOAA expanded partnerships that will accelerate  understanding of the deep ocean. Using state of the art technologies, these collaborations offer the promise of shared discoveries that will educate, protect the marine environment, and enrich lives. NOAA’s newest story map, Probing the Unknown, shines a light on NOAA's amazing deep sea activities with its partners. Dive in and find the story map here.

Conference Reports

Making the Grade? How State Public School Science Standards Address Climate Change

smoke stack

A new report, from the National Center for Science Education and the Texas Freedom Network Education Foundation, examines the treatment of climate change in state science standards across the country. To what extent are public schools helping students understand what is happening and preparing them to responsibly engage in civic deliberation on the problem and possible solutions? The interactive version of the report includes a map you can click on to learn your state’s grade. Find the report here.


Grants, Contests, Campaigns

Jobs, Internships and Opportunities

  • ERT, Inc seeks an education evaluation associate to support NOAA's Office of Education in the monitoring and evaluation of the NOAA B-WET program, to provide capacity building for program managers and grantees, and to assist the NOAA Education community on stewardship education evaluation. The position description can be found here:
  • Mission-Aransas NERR has an opening for an Education Coordinator position to oversee our education program in Port Aransas, Texas. Please share and/or apply here. 
  • Graduate students: apply by December 4 for the Marine and Hydrokinetics (MHK) Fellowship Program with ORISE. Participants submit research plans and conduct research at their school as well as a hosting facility selected by the DOE Water Power Technologies Office, spending at least six months on their projects
  • NOAA is pleased to announce the 2021 call for applications for NOAA’s Climate and Global Change Postdoctoral Fellowship (C&GC) program. C&GC fellows are UCAR employees and receive a fixed annual salary. For more information go here or email! 







News You Can Use on the NOAA Science and Stewardship

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