The Watch. News You Can Use From NOAA Planet Stewards - 13 April 2021

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News you can use from NOAA Planet Stewards 

“Spring: a lovely reminder of how beautiful change can truly be.”

 – Anonymous

NOAA Planet Stewards Program Links:

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NOAA Planet Stewards is Now Accepting Stewardship Project Proposals for Funding!

Join us on Wednesday, April 14 at 8:00 PM EDT for a special webinar about how you can apply to NOAA Planet Stewards for up to $5000.000 to fund your stewardship project! Don't miss this great opportunity!  Please share the news to all interested colleagues and networks.

Click here for more information and to register!

Join the Planet Stewards April Book Club Meeting

tale of two planets

Join us at our next Book Club meeting 

Monday, April 19th at 8:00 pm ET

when we'll discuss:

Tales of Two Planets

In A Tale of Two Planets John Freeman draws together a group of writers from around the world to help us see how the environmental crisis is hitting some of the most vulnerable communities where they live. This is a literary all-points bulletin of fiction, essays, and poems about the most important crisis of our time.

Find all upcoming Planet Stewards books and Book Club meeting dates here.

The discussion is open to all. To join, dial 866-662-7513 (toll free!), then, use the pass code 1170791#

Share this invitation with all interested colleagues and networks.

Community Resilience to Climate Change: 

A Virtual Workshop for All Educators throughout July

July 5 - 29, 2021 (Live panel discussions on July 8th, 15th, 22nd, & 29th)

NOAA Planet StewardsArtist Boat and the NOAA Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary welcome you to join us during the month of July, 2021 from anywhere you can Zoom for an interdisciplinary 70% independent learning/self-paced virtual workshop; The event is meant for all educators. It will focus on climate change impacts to human and natural communities, and the actions you can take to build resilience in light of these impacts. Find out more here and register.

noaa in focus


Sian, a community college professor from Arizona, sailed aboard the NOAA Ship Oscar Dyson in 2017. She recalls her philosophy for seeking new opportunities to leave her comfort zone and finding her inner explorer in this TAS Alumni Association video.
Are you, or do you know a NOAA Education Program Alum who has risen to amazing heights? let us know and we'll feature them in The Watch.


citizen scientist

Countdown to Earth Day and NOAA's Unlocking of  a Citizen Science "Project of the Day."  

April is Citizen Science Month! In celebration, NOAA will be highlighting one citizen science project from NOAA and our partners from now until Earth Day on April 22.

Find out how you can be a citizen scientist for NOAA



Speaking of citizen science...

Now is a great time to make a difference by using the Marine Debris Tracker app to record debris items you find. Download the Tracker today!


III. 2021 Marine Debris Calendar Available Online


NOAA's 2021 Marine Debris Calendar is still available for you to download! This year’s calendar features artwork from thirteen students in kindergarten through eighth grade from nine states and two U.S. territories, all winners of the “Keep the Sea Free of Debris” art contest.

Learn More


IV. First National Rip Current Forecast Model

For the first time, NOAA has launched a national rip current forecast model, aimed at saving lives of beach-goers around the country. This new model can predict the hourly probability of rip currents along U.S. beaches up to six days out. Read all about it here.


V. "A Laser is Worth a Thousand Words" Ocean Podcast

Lidar stands for light detection and ranging. Learn how this popular remote sensing method supports NOAA’s mission and enables scientists and mapping professionals to examine both natural and manmade environments with accuracy, precision, and flexibility. Listen to the podcast.

noaa events

Notable Webinars from NOAA ONESeminar Series: 

The OneNOAA Science Seminar Series is an effort by over 40 NOAA seminar coordinators to produce and distribute a comprehensive list of NOAA-hosted, publicly accessible presentations. Check out the OneNOAA Seminar Series website, and register to attend one of their upcoming webinars listed below:


April 15, 12-12:30 pm ET: When Sharks Bite They Leave Evidence Behind: Forensics for Surfers and Shark Depredation Lunch & Learn

NOAA speakers developed and demonstrate successful methods using trace DNA to identify shark species who bite things! Register here.

whale shark

April 21, 3-4 pm ET: Whale Sharks of Hawai’i

Very little is known about whale sharks (Rhincodon typus),  - the largest fish in the world - with some individuals measuring 20 meters (60 feet) long and weighing around 40 tons The researchers at the Hawai'i Uncharted Research Collective started this non-profit organization to learn more about these amazing animals. Tune in and register for the webinar here.

Wave Safe Collection

April 22, 2-13:30 pm ET: The UN Ocean Decade: What a Scientist Needs to Know

The UN Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development officially began on January 1, 2021. But what does that mean for scientists? Find out and join in the webinar here on Google Meet!

trash pickup

April 22, 4 - 5 pm ET: Kid Power - How North Carolina Kids Took On Marine Debris

Join Jenna Hartley, North Carolina State University PhD student, as she details her research project involving the power of young people as community change-agents on the topic of marine debris. Hear how 2,500 North Carolina 4th & 5th graders, across the state from the mountains to the sea, collected thousands of pounds of trash. Learn how they delivered creative presentations to the public and won over the hearts and minds of their local officials and politicians across the state. Also, get access to the freely-available educational marine debris curriculum used in the project, which was developed by the Duke University Marine Lab Community Science Initiative.  Register here to attend!

Educator opportunities

  • “Using Understanding Global Change to Make Earth System Connections about Local Phenomena: The Return of the River Otters” presented by Jessica Bean and focused on resources for Elementary Teachers on Tuesday 4/13/21 @ 6:30pm ET. To register and more details can be found here: 

  • “Teaching Climate Change in a Community That Does Not Want to Hear it” presented by Jeffrey Yuhas on Wednesday 4/21/21 @ 6:30pm ET. To register and learn more details click here.

NOAA Teachers on the Estuary Workshops 

teachers on estuary

NOAA is offering educator professional development workshops at National Estuarine Research Reserve System locations all across the country - or virtually - from May 5 to July 30. These FREE hands-on workshops offer research and field-based training. By participating, you will :

  • Explore coastal habitats and conduct field studies;
  • Interact with local scientists and experienced coastal
  • Integrate local and national monitoring data into the classroom; and
  • Learn hands-on field activities highlighting Estuary Education Resources.

Check the website for more information and registration deadlines. 

Washington Science Teacher Association Workshops

April 15; May 6, 2021, 4 - 5 pm on Zoom


WSTA Creates a safe forum for teachers to explore the challenges created by the pandemic and opportunities for growth into the future. Join these one hour forums, each led by a WSTA Regional Representative. Follow up discussion sessions are available for each forum, which includes:

  • Creating 3D Learning on a 2D Medium - Virtual, Hybrid In Person | April 15
  • Ungrading as a Path to Meaningful Science Learning | May 6

Learn more & register> 

SciStarter: Free Online Events for Citizen Science Month

April 15, 22, and 29, 8 - 9 pm ET

cittizen science

Online citizen science hub SciStarter will hold free online events throughout April, including weekly webinars every Thursday on Zoom to share ideas with educators and help engage learners in citizen science projects that can be done safety from home, backyards, and online. Educator Webinars happen on Thursdays at 8 p.m. Eastern Time (ET). SciStarter will share and discuss citizen science projects, resources, and ideas for remote and distributed learners.

Exploring Biology w NASA Workshop for K-12 Educators

April 17 at 1 - 2:30 p.m. EDT

nasa teachers

Join the education team at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory virtually in Southern California for an interactive workshop for educators. Participants will explore biology, oceanography and geology concepts through the lens of NASA's search for life beyond Earth. Hear about current NASA missions and research in these fields. Follow along to explore activities and demonstrations aligned to Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) that are ready for virtual or in-person classrooms. Participation is limited, and registration is required here.

The Cornell Lab - Free Professional Development Webinar - Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion

April 20 @ 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm ET | April 22 @ 8:00 pm - 9:00 pm ET.

 In this interactive webinar, you will: read an article prior to the webinar. Discuss your article with other educators. Brainstorm strategies for building justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion into science and nature-based education. Because this webinar requires reading articles prior to the session, registration will close one week in advanceLearn more & register> 


Webinar: How to Host a Youth Climate Summit

April 27, 4 - 5 pm ET


Have you heard about Youth Climate Summits? These exciting, youth-driven events provide opportunities for students to learn about climate change and design their own climate action plans for their schools and communities. With The Wild Center’s free resources, you have everything you need to plan and host your own Youth Climate Summit, either in-person or virtually. At this event, learn more about these resources, get advice from other summit organizers, hear from youth leaders who are passionate about taking climate action, and ask the questions to jump start your Youth Climate Summit journey!

Click here to register.

2021 30 Under 30 Nominations Now Open! 

Do you know any game-changing environmental education (EE) leaders under 30 years of age who are harnessing the power of EE to build a sustainable and equitable future for all? 

Submit a nomination> to the North American Association for Environmental Education Association's (NAAEE) 

Deadline is May 5!

EE 30 under 30

Climate Literacy & NGSS Workshop from Towson U

climate globe

The Towson University Center for STEM is excited to offer an online professional development workshop focusing on climate literacy aligned with Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) for secondary science teachers in grades 6–12. This year's workshop will be completely online, with both synchronous and asynchronous meetings.In order to be considered, you must complete the application and principal support forms. The application deadline is June 4, 2021. More details can be found here.

Wildfire, Drought, and The Future of Forests (Virtual teacher workshops this June)


As wildfires continue to ravage the west, burning more and more of the landscape, many are left wondering, what happens next?  New research shows that patterns of ecological succession are changing due to increasing drought. Developed by scientists and curriculum developers at the University of Colorado Boulder, The Future of Forests is a MS/HS storyline curriculum centered around the driving question, How do landscapes recover after a wildfire? with each  lesson tied to NGSS Life Science standards. Through NASA and US Forest Service online interactive, authentic datasets and citizen science protocols, learn how to have students gather evidence they'll use to model and explain changing patterns of ecological succession.

Climate Adaptation Leadership Award for Natural Resources  

Deadline to apply: May 16th

The Climate Adaptation Leadership Awards for Natural Resources is seeking nominations for 2021! The Award recognizes the outstanding and exemplary leadership by individuals, agencies, businesses (and even students and youth) to reduce effects and advance adaptation of the Nation's vital natural resources in a changing climate.

Learn More Award FAQs | Eligibility & Criteria | Past Winners

Student opportunities

Resources to Spark Excitement for Data Science; Chance to win Laptop and $5,000 for College!


In celebration of April’s Math Awareness Month, Domino Data Lab and the National Science Teaching Association have joined forces to spark excitement for careers in data science among elementary school students nationwide. Enjoy free access to Domino’s new children’s e-book, Florence the Data Scientist and Her Magical Bookmobile, a supporting classroom-ready lesson plan for K-5 educators, and the “Be a Data Scientist” activity sheet for students.

Download Florence the Data Scientist and Her Magical Bookmobile to read with your students today. Download the “Be a Data Scientist” activity sheet to help your students record and analyze data. Completed student activity sheets can be submitted here for a chance to win a laptop and $5,000 for college!

ClimateScience Olympiad! Register to  Participate

Registration ends on 1 August, 2021


Students ages 14-25 and passionate about finding solutions to climate change have an opportunity to attend the 2021 United Nations Climate Summit (COP-26) in Glasgow, and even win up to $2,000 in cash!

The ClimateScience Olympiad is a global climate competition engaging 10,000 youth (ages 14-25) in an effort to find solutions to some of the most challenging climate problems. REGISTER. 

noaa live alaska

NOAA Live! Webinars from Alaska and Elsewhere 

Tuesdays, 3pm ET; and  Wednesdays, 4 pm ET

NOAA Live! and NOAA Live! Alaska are weekly series of interactive webinars aimed at students in grades 2-8 (but of interest to all ages!). Join events to ask questions of presenters and learn more about weather, oceanography, marine life, fisheries and more! Upcoming events include:


View Recordings from all previous NOAALive! webinars here.

Ocean Classroom (Live!): The Art of Ocean Acoustics

Thursday, April 15 from 12pm - 12:30pm ET

Whether created by people, ocean life, or other natural sources, the sea is full of sound. Scientists are just beginning to uncover the mysteries of the underwater sound using acoustic analysis, and now artists are working to make this growing field more accessible to everyone. Join Jennifer L. Miksis-Olds, Director of the Center for Acoustics Research and Education at the University of New Hampshire, and science based artist Lindsay Olson for a conversation about bridging the worlds of art and underwater sound.

Tune in LIVE on the GSO Facebook pageGSO YouTube channel, or GSO Twitter 

Webinar: Humpback Whale Migration Obstacle Course 

Friday, April 16, 2021 at 5 pm ET


Join Olympic Coast National Marine Sanctuary and Guest Presenter Rebecca Lewis from Pacific Whale Foundation in this fun GET UP AND MOVE (or migrate)J humpback whale obstacle course!

Register to take part in the webinar.

Chill for Climate Change, Earth Day Event for 5th-8th Graders

April 22nd, 1:00 PM ET (and asynchronously)

glacier iceland

Join Dr. Ellen Prager, glaciologist Jim White, and The Weather Channel meteorologist Paul Goodloe for this exciting discussion about climate change.
Hear why Ilulissat, Greenland and climate change were chosen for the backdrop and address what’s based on real science versus pure fiction. Jim White will talk about what it’s like to conduct climate change research on Greenland’s ice sheet and glaciers, and Paul Goodloe will help everyone to understand how climate change impacts our weather. There will be plenty of time for questions and answers.

To learn more and register go to:

Girls in Science Fellowship at Woods Hole this Summer!

Information session on April 15, 2021 at 7:00 p.m. (Click here to register.)

girls science

Woods Hole Sea Grant and the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution are teaming up with Earthwatch Institute for the Girls in Science (GiS) Fellowship. The week-long fellowship promotes diversity in STEM and exposes young women to a variety of marine careers. Who is eligible? Young women who are currently sophomores or juniors from Massachusetts high schools.

This program is offered at no cost to attendees. Food and accommodations will be provided if the program is held in person. Two sessions will be offered this summer:: August 8–14, 2021  and  August 15–21, 2021.

Click here to apply to the Girls in Science Fellowship.

EarthEcho International Accepting Applications for Youth Leadership Programs and Water Challenge Ambassador

Applications open through May 3, 2021

earth echo

EarthEcho International is now accepting applications for their 2021 youth leadership programs!  Young environmental leaders ages 15-22 from the United States are invited to apply for a position on the EarthEcho Youth Leadership Council (YLC)!  To learn more visit:  

Youth ages 14-22 from the United States are invited to protect our water planet as an EarthEcho Water Challenge Ambassador! Through this unique experience, Ambassadors become community scientists and lead ongoing water quality monitoring efforts through the EarthEcho Water Challenge, To learn more visit:

Applications are open through May 3, 2021.

2021 NMEA Virtual Student Conference

July 15th from 2:00-5:00pm EDT; To Presentation: May 7 application deadline


Do you know a student who has a project related to the ocean and care for the environment?  Would they like to share their project with other students at the NMEA Virtual Student Conference this summer?  If so, please fill out this form by May 7th

Learn more about the NMEA 2021 Virtual Conference here for teachers and youth alike.

Ed Resources

From NOAA "Watching in 3-D" Activity Package for high school students

Dive into ocean exploration with this new package of mapping activities using the authentic deep-sea mapping tool, Fledermaus
This package provides:
  • an overview of multibeam sonar
  • four case studies to explore a variety of multibeam sonar
         3-D image files
  • guides for student exploration
  • step-by-step usage tool guides for the Ocean Exploration Digital Atlas (a searchable,
         interactive expedition data map) and a free version of Fledermaus (a powerful 3-D
         interactive mapping data visualization software used by ocean explorers)
Check out the Watching in 3-D activity overview to learn more and find links to the four case studies (Exploring an Underwater Volcano, Cold Seeps, a Seamount and a Hotspot Volcano).

Hurricane Preparedness Week Materials ...or Anytime!

NOAA 2021 Hurricane Preparedness Week materials are now available for use.  Hurricane Prep Week takes place May 9-15, but feel free to use the content before then and throughout the year!
The materials are available at The Spanish versions of the graphics & social media plan are also available.
Also check out a terrific hurricane activity to complement the above materials. Students research and report on Hurricane Katrina, using an earth systems science analysis approach in this problem-based learning module. Find the PDF here.

How's My Waterways from the EPA


How's My Waterway (HMW) is produced by the Environmental Protection Agency and provides a comprehensive overview of water quality data and information in the US on three different scales: community, state and national. HMW pulls data from several sources with the goal of answering questions about aquatic life, eating fish, swimming, drinking water, restoration and protection. 

Information on EPA’s HMW: 

Access HMW here:

See a video about HMW:

Phenology Resources: From the National Phenology Network and the University of Maine!


Check out the National Phenology Network for access to nation-wide data on changing phenology, as well as lessons connecting flora and fauna phenology to existing curriculum.

Provide students with outlets to learn about phenology and how climate change is impacting their own backyards. Use apps like Nature’s Notebook and Ebird to connect students to citizen science and see how the movement of birds, mammals, and plants have changed over time.

Many communities and cultures still rely on the natural cycles of animal migration or seasonal production of fruits and vegetables. Explore how climate change is impacting peoples’ ability to maintain their way of life.

And explore the University of Maine’s Signs of the Seasons program for lesson plans that connect phenology to climate change, while also creating opportunities to explore phenology not just in science, but also in the arts through life cycle drawings.

The Homeschool Scientist

Filled with hands-on experiments, curriculum choices, science resources, and expert advice, this website helps elementary and middle level educators in homeschool and classroom settings lessen their fears around teaching science and infuses lessons with fun.  The site also provides resources and tips (via blog posts) to help educators and parents stay organized when conducting science experiments at home or in distance-learning environments. Access it here.


Nature Lab 


A collection of 10 lessons are included from the Nature Conservancy for grades 9–12, Lessons include accompanying teachers guides and videos and address topics such as urban runoff, biomimicry, and climate change. In addition, a Virtual STEM Career Fair promotes dynamic careers in those fields.

Visit the website for descriptions of all the available Nature Lab lessons and access the relevant Teacher Guides.

The Endangered Species Conservation Site


The Endangered Species Conservation Site ( was developed to provide background, special resources, and action ideas for anyone interested in learning more about/helping to protect threatened and endangered species. Teachers and others working with students of any level should be interested in this educational resource. In addition to endangered species-related news and facts, the website's special features include *A For Teachers page that includes instruction ideas and sample lesson plans for teaching about ES, *A Resources page with a variety of materials and other information, *For Young People page, and *A translate button that will provide translations in numerous languages.

 National Climate Assessment (NCA) Teaching Resources

The National Climate Assessment (NCA) offers a wealth of actionable science about the causes, effects, risks and possible responses to human-caused climate change. The Climate Literacy and Energy Awareness Network has added pages for teaching about the NCA. Each page summarizes the key messages from all the NCA chapters/regions and includes relevant teaching resources from CLEAN and elsewhere for addressing that topic with your students.

town near sea

Explore Regenerative Agriculture with Kiss the Ground: For Schools

kiss ground

In celebration of Earth Month, KISS THE GROUND: FOR SCHOOLS and the National Science Teaching Association (NSTA) have partnered to bring new, science-based lesson plans and resources to K-12 teachers nationwide. 

The lesson plans and related resources discuss regenerative agriculture and provide students opportunities to use data from multiple sources—including data they collect themselves—to develop explanations about how saving the soil can have far-reaching, positive impacts on Earth’s environments.

Conference Reports

climate conf

Join Climate Generation, NOAA's Climate Program Office, and The Wild Center’s Youth Climate Program virtually from July 28–30 at the Summer Institute for Climate Change Education! This Summer Institute will focus on challenging climate change misinformation, addressing climate change inequalities, and focusing on community-centered solutions. Learn more and register here.



Educators of America MicroGrant Program for Educators and Teachers

  • Educators of America wants to supply teachers and educators with the classroom technology they need and train them to use it in effective ways. If you are a teacher who needs effective technological tools for bettering student achievement, complete a short, simple Educators of America grant application. The MicroGrant Program fund ranges from $250 to $5,000. (Spring Deadline April 15; Fall Deadline September 15)

Career News

  • Reef Relief is looking to hire an Education Coordinator beginning the end of May. For details about the position and how to apply, go to:

  • Virtual Teacher Recruitment Fair – Diversity in Ed offers K–12 schools a virtual teacher fair to recruit and hire teachers. Both new and experienced teachers are welcome. This year's event will take place on April 14 at 11 a.m.–4 p.m. Central Time. More than 250 schools, districts, and graduate schools are recruiting teachers of diverse backgrounds. Learn more here


Education News You Can Use


Science News You Can Use



Ocean, Coastal Weather, Sea Ice, Hurricanes, Ocean Life

Wildfires, Floods, and Other Weather-related Natural Disasters

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