The Watch. News You Can Use From NOAA Planet Stewards - Sept. 14, 2021

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News you can use from NOAA Planet Stewards 

“The one thing we need more than hope is action.
Once we start to act, hope is everywhere.” 

—Greta Thunberg

Keep Up with NOAA Planet Stewards:

Access our archive collections: past webinars and book club selections.

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Archived Issues of The Watch and Your Items to Share

If you're looking for terrific educational resources to plug into your academic planning this year, check out archived issues of The Watch! Our team has all materials for utility by formal and informal educators working to increase their own ocean, climate, and environmental awareness, and that of their students and audiences.

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Join the Planet Stewards September Book Club Meeting


Last nights Planet Stewards Book Club meeting was a Hoot! But don't worry if you missed it! Our next get together will be on 

Monday, October 18th at 8:00 pm ET

to discuss the non-fiction book: 

How to Avoid a Climate Disaster

by Bill Gates

"It’s Gate's engineering brain and mode of thinking that he brings to bear on climate change in this book. He delivers a sober analysis of the major components of greenhouse gas emissions and how we get to net zero by removing 51 billion tons of CO2-equivalent emissions per year, It won't be easy, but it's possible. 

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

The discussion is open to all.

To join, just dial 866-662-7513 (toll free!), then, use the pass code: 1170791#

Share this invitation with all interested colleagues and networks.


Refuse Plastic - Save the Seas

zero waste student

Tish Manning has been teaching for 25 years at the elementary and middle school level. She has dedicated the last 5 years to helping students learn how to protect the ocean. Her work earned the New England Aquarium’s School Group award for Ocean Stewardship in 2019 and two Planet Stewards grants. One such project, BRRRR (Belfast Refuse Reduce Reuse Recycle), is composed of a group of dedicated third, fourth and fifth graders who volunteer their time to reduce waste in the school to protect the ocean. Read more about it here.

noaa in focus


Noteworthy from NOAA

Educational resources

  • NOAA’s Office of National Marine Sanctuaries is here to offer education and outreach resources to help teachers and students prepare for the new school year. Learn more about their immersive virtual reality adventures and lessons. Plug into their distance learning programs and webinar series, their high quality ocean-related photos and videos for school projects, and funding opportunities for environmental education. Find much more! 

  • New NOAA Ocean Podcast: Marine Protected Areas - Conserving America’s Ocean and Coasts.  Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) play a vital role in conserving our Earth’s special marine places. In this episode, the director of NOAA’s National Marine Protected Areas Center discusses the importance of MPAs, NOAA’s role in managing them, and what the future might look like for these special places.

  • NOAA has a new Gulf of Mexico harmful algal bloom (HAB) forecasting tool! You can now get information updated on an hourly basis specific to your beach on respiratory irritation, chances of intensification, and satellite information. Check it out here. 

  • What do hurricanes and aerial photography have in common? Two experts who work in emergency response imagery collection tell us all about it in this podcast. After listening to the podcast you can learn more about how NOAA's post-hurricane aerial damage assessment flights are now using a new camera system that provides significant improvements in resolution and coverage. You can view detailed imagery of the aftermath of Henri here and Hurricane Ida here. 

  • What is NOAA doing to preserve the nation’s maritime heritage? Find out how NOAA is  preserving and protecting important historical, cultural, and archaeological resources within their coastal, marine, and Great Lakes waters here.

  • Find out what a national coral reef monitoring program coordinator does here, and   check out what other great folks at NOAA's Ocean Service do at this site.  
fall safety
  • Fall Seasonal Safety Campaign – On September 1st - The first day of Meteorological Fall - NOAA's National Weather Service launched its Fall Seasonal Safety Campaign. Check out and share these important resources and tips with everyone!

  • Tagging White Sharks  – Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary scientists, with partners from the Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries and the University of Massachusetts Amherst, tagged white sharks for the first time in the sanctuary. The sharks were feeding on the carcass of a humpback whale. This unique opportunity allowed scientists to tag five sharks with acoustic tags that emit a unique signal every 60-100 seconds. NOAA and collaborators are investigating the cause of death for the humpback whale. Watch this video to learn more about it.
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Nowhere to go? Ensuring the survival
of endemic songbirds in Papahānaumokuākea

16 September 2021  |   6 pm ET


Prior to the early 1900s, the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument was home to five species of songbirds that were found nowhere else in the world. There of these species remain. Join  Dr. Sheldon Plentovich as she shares her experience and hope for the future of these amazing birds. Register for the webinar here.


NOAA tools, products, and research for oil spill response and damage assessment in the Arctic


20 September 2021   |  3:30 pm - 4 pm ET

arctic oil spill

 NOAA has many different roles in oil spill preparedness, prevention, response, damage assessment, and restoration. Fulfilling these roles in Alaska and the Arctic requires specialized information, knowledge, tools, and products tailored to the environment and resources in the region. Find out recent and ongoing research that enhances NOAA's ability to provide scientific support for oil spill response and protect, assess, and restore marine and coastal habitats, fish, and wildlife in Alaska. Sign up here for the various webinars in the Alaska and the Arctic Seminar Series.


Marine Debris in Alaska:
Challenges, Opportunities, and Actions


23 September 2021   |   3:30 pm - 4 pm ET

This talk will discuss the many different aspects of debris efforts in Alaska, with a specific focus on recent efforts focused on the Arctic and the opportunities and challenges that exist for working in these unique areas. Sign up here for the various webinars in the Alaska and the Arctic Seminar Series.



Seagrass Meadows Webinar Archive:

Unsung Heroes in Combating Climate Change?


Seagrass meadows can be found from the tropics to the arctic circle, with over 60 species in total. Research suggests that these habitats contribute to long-term climate mitigation through sediment carbon sequestration, while also serving to ameliorate the impacts of ocean acidification. In this talk, explore these implications for the conservation and management of these coastal ecosystems. Find the recorded webinar here.

Educator opportunities


Environment 2042 Leadership Intensive Training for 30 Environmental Education Leaders

Extended to 17 September 2021


The Center for Diversity & the Environment is offering an Environment 2042 Leadership Intensive (E42LI) training for up to 30 people through ee360. ee360 is an ambitious five-year initiative that supports a diverse cadre of environmental education leaders to increase environmental literacy for everyone, everywhere. 

The application deadline has been extended to September 17. Learn more and apply ASAP.  

Continuing Your Learning Journey with National Geographic


Take a deeper dive into innovative instructional strategies with a community of like-minded educators. Explore our current suite of offerings below, ranging from National Geographic’s project-based learning strategy, the Geo-Inquiry Process, and other opportunities that let you personalize how you want to transform your teaching. Cohort-based courses for this upcoming school year including Teaching Global Climate Change in Your ClassroomMapping as a Visualization and Communication Tool in Your Classroom, and more. Find all the courses here.

And don't forget to access the National Geographic Resource Library: Search the Library for high-quality, standards-based, educational resources and activities. Many of the free maps, lesson plans, videos, interactives, and reference materials have been curated into collections, such as collections on hurricanesinfectious agents, or abiotic factors. Create an account to bookmark and easily return to saved resources.  

Continuing Your Learning Journey with National Geographic

Free Online Professional Development from HHMI BioInteractive


This Fall HHMI BioInteractive is offering free, online professional development workshops for life and environmental science educators teaching at the High School and Undergraduate levels. These workshops have all the elements valued about professional development, including opportunities to hear from expert educators, interact with HHMI's BioInteractive resources, and learn from other educators. Workshops are designed to be engaging and reflective, and relevant to a variety of educational settings and contexts. Check out these opportunities:

Find them all here.

Town Hall Webinar: The Powerful Connection between Education, Climate, and Justice

Wednesday, 22 September   |   2 - 3:30 pm EDT

noaa naaee webinar

Join the North American Assoc. of Environmental Educators (NAAEE) for a hopeful and engaging Town Hall Webinar with Governor Jay Inslee from Washington State and a number of other leading educators from NAAEE, and Frank Niepold, Sr. Climate Education Coordinator at  NOAA,  as they focus on climate literacy, climate justice, and education. Register today.

Teach Climate Network Workshop: Exploring Climate Change through Extreme Weather Phenomenon

Event: 29 September   |   1  - 2 pm ET

climate gen

Exploring climate change through the lens of phenomena, such as extreme weather events, allows educators and students to see directly the impacts, and possible solutions, to climate change on a regional level. Join Climate Generation educator Seth Spencer as we explore extreme weather events, how they are connected to climate change, and how to engage your students in finding potential solutions. Expected duration: 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm ET.  Learn more & register>

36th Annual International Coastal Cleanup!


The Ocean Conservancy brings people together around the globe for this event to clean up marine debris this year in their local communities. The NOAA Marine Debris Program is proud to have supported the International Coastal Cleanup (ICC) for 15 years. To find a cleanup near you, and steps for staying safe while collecting debris, check out Ocean Conservancy's website.

Don't live near a coast? - That's OK. Inland lakes and rivers count in NOAA Planet Stewards Book! Check out NOAA's Marine Debris How to Help and Education Webpages to see what you can do to make a difference.

Plastics & Climate: How Single-Use Packaging is Fueling the Crisis

29 September   |   5 - 6 pm ET


Over 99% of plastic is made from fossil fuels. Yet, big brands are increasing their production of single-use plastics and packaging—driving a petrochemical expansion that threatens the global climate as well as communities and ecosystems around the world.

This webinar will feature Judith Enck, President of Beyond Plastics and former Regional Administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency under President Obama, who will discuss the nexus between plastic production and climate change, including the immense environmental justice impacts, and Graham Forbes, Global Project Leader of the Plastic-Free Future campaign at Greenpeace, who will discuss how consumer goods companies’ reliance on single-use plastic packaging is providing a lifeline for Big Oil.

Register to attend this webinar here.

Estuarine Sentinel Sites: From Environmental Measurements to Climate Change Management


The Chesapeake Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve in Virginia (CBNERR-VA) is part of multiple sentinel site partnerships that serve as places dedicated to studying the impacts of climate change, sea-level rise, and much more. Join Dr. Carl Friedrichs, Associate Director of CBNERR-VA, as he discusses their role in supporting sentinel sites and the research they are conducting to better understand the effects of local and global change on coastal environments. After Hours lectures are designed for an adult audience, but all ages are welcome to attend. The lecture is free; registration is required. Register Here.

Wade Institute for Science Education: STEM Week Challenge - Hurricane Heroes! 

Event: 18 - 22 October 2021


Imagine that a category 6 hurricane has hit Storm City, MA. The city has been flooded by 14 inches of rain. Students will be challenged to: 1) build a transport vessel to move 25 people to safety; 2) build a water movement system using gravity or alternative sources of energy to move water 2 km away from homes and businesses. Teachers, your students won’t have all the fun! Experience Hurricane Heroes! Storm City, MA from the student perspective during an inquiry-based, interactive pre-challenge professional development workshop. Find out more and register. Sign up at

30th Annual Toshiba/NSTA ExploraVision Competition


Toshiba and the National Science Teaching Association (NSTA) are kicking off the 30th annual Toshiba/NSTA  ExploraVision  competition. The ExploraVision program challenges students to use problem solving, critical thinking, and teamwork to imagine solutions to real-life issues. Participants will have a chance to win a number of prizes, including $10,000 U.S. Series EE Savings Bonds (at maturity). Registration is open until January 31, 2022.

Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching                              


The Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching (PAEMST) - including computer science, is now accepting nominations! The PAEMST is the highest honor the U.S. government bestows for K–12 mathematics and science teaching, honoring up to 108 teachers each year. Presidential awardees receive a certificate signed by the President; a trip for two to Washington, D.C. to attend a series of recognition events; and a $10,000 award from the National Science Foundation. They also join a cadre of more than 5,000 award-winning teachers.

Consider nominating a talented teacher or applying for the award yourself here. This year, teachers in grades K–6 are eligible. Nominations close on January 7. Applications are due by February 6.

Student opportunities
noaa live

NOAA Live! Alaska webinars are starting up again this week. As always, you can find past webinar recordings on the NOAA Live! Alaska website and our sister webinar series, NOAA Live! website.


25 September 2021   |   1 pm - 4:30 pm ET


Join the Greater Farallones National Marine Sanctuary for an online celebration of sharks to raise awareness of the importance of elasmobranchs in our marine ecosystem, coinciding with the arrival of white sharks to the San Francisco area for plentiful feeding. Tune in for fun and educational activities for adults and kids: shark art, shark science, shark films, shark conservation, and lots of great ukulele tunes! 

Free event! Gift with optional registration. Register here.
Streaming: YouTube Live 

Solar Decathlon in your Future? Apply by 10/26!

Solar decathlon

Applications are now open for the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Solar Decathlon which challenges collegiate teams to design OR build high-performance, low-carbon buildings powered by renewables! Collegiate teams can apply now for the 2022 Design Challenge (1-year design-only competition) and the 2023 Build Challenge (2-year design-build competition). Finalist teams will be invited to compete for victory during the Competition Event at DOE’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory in Golden, Colorado. Apply here by October 26

JUMP into STEM: Join the discussion, Unveil innovation, Make connections, Promote tech-to-market


Check out JUMP (Join the discussion, Unveil innovation, Make connections, Promote tech-to-market) into STEM, a virtual competition. The competition is open to teams of two to four students enrolled at U.S. colleges and universities to solve critical challenges in the field of building science around the themes of equal access to healthy indoor air, resilience for all in the wake of disaster, and solving market adoption for emerging energy efficient technologies. Winners of the competition will have the opportunity to receive paid, 10-week internships at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), Oak Ridge National Laboratory, or the National Renewable Energy Laboratory. Challenges close on November 12, 2021. The final competition will be held at ORNL on January 27 and 28, 2022. To learn more and to compete:

Ed Resources


Program for Local Adaption to Climate Effects (PLACE): Sea Level Rise

sea level rise

NOAA, Mississippi-Alabama and Florida Sea Grant, and the Mississippi State University bring you Sea-Level Rise in the Classroom, a four-module curriculum designed for high school teachers to introduce sea-level rise impacts and discuss community based solutions with their students.

Check it out and find out more about the important work these organizations are doing in coastal resilience education here.

You can learn more about the two major ways climate change exacerbates rising sea level, and discover more resources to use with your students here

Waste Lesson Plans from the National Science Teaching Association

Lesson Plan 3–5
Explore the packing and shipping process with your students with their new Daily Do—How Can Technology Help Reduce Our Waste? In this lesson, students in grades 3–5 design a process to reduce waste by using the least amount of materials as possible to pack and ship school supplies. 
Lesson Plan 9–12

Students engage in science and engineering practices and use cause-and-effect thinking to make sense of human impact on the environment. This Daily Do explores how the choices we make directly and indirectly impact the health of the environment.

Don't miss these four great education resources!


Nature’s Notebook Education Program: Learners of all ages from elementary to adult can build understandings about phenology and climate change with the curriculum, activities, and other resources from the USA National Phenology Network. 

Composting Guide for Educators: This 66-page e-publication presents information and lessons for setting up and managing a successful worm-bin composting system in K–12 formal and informal education settings.  

Smithsonian Science Education Center Curriculum and Resources: Visit the Center’s resource database to access STEM–focused educational materials to support K–8 classroom instruction. The resources include videos, games, apps, e-books, and online learning modules, and address topics such as engineering design, life science, Earth and space science, chemistry, and physical science.

ACLIPSE (Advancing Climate Literacy through Investment in In-Service and Pre-service Science Educators) 


As part of the Lawrence Hall of Science's MARE (Marine Activities, Resources & Education) Program, ACLIPSE provides educators and their students with opportunities to:

  • Develop in-depth content knowledge of climate science and climate change, specifically focused on sea level rise, greenhouse effect, carbon cycle, and ocean acidification.
  • Be able to use an NGSS-aligned, three dimensional approach to teaching.
  • Develop necessary skills to work with real-time data and use data in authentic ways to foster student-led inquiry.

Check out the 11 sessions of content here

Data Explorer from HHMI Biointeractive

data explorer

From HHMI Biointeractive, check out Data Explorer, a new web tool that helps students build their skills in data literacy and science practices by exploring real research data. They've included curated, authentic data sets for two of their most frequently used resource collections - finches in the Galápagos and elephant populations under poaching. Each resource collection is supplemented with background information. Users can also upload their own data.



Developed for educators, students, and parents, NASA created Camp Landsat, a terrific series of online resources and activities to engage everyone with earth science and remote sensing. You'll find videos, interactives and downloadable games that can be done in the classroom or at home. You'll find out how Landsat satellites help manage, protect and preserve our planet. See how Earth’s landscape has changed over time, and dive into themes like geology, agriculture and biodiversity.

The Ocean's Twilight Zone


The ocean's "twilight zone," a region deep beneath the waves where weird and fascinating creatures thrive, is an important but little understood part of the vast marine ecosystem. Readers can "dive into" this world with the Ocean Twilight Zone (OTZ) project from the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. It offers a logbook for notes from the field; and technologies involved in diving more than 3,000 feet below the ocean surface. Teachers might find useful resources to integrate into the classroom, such as the "Images" and "Videos" that can be accessed from the Multimedia drop-down menu.  Click one of the featured creature tiles for photos, a description, quick facts, and related research items. Find the Ocean Twilight Zone resource here.

Living Landscapes: Culture, Climate Science & Education about Tribal and Native Communities


The Living Landscapes Climate Science Project is a Comprehensive Set of Culture-based Climate Science Educational Resources about Native Communities at the high school and undergraduate level. There are two major sections: A series of Tutorials for Understanding Climate Science -which is designed to increase your knowledge and understanding about the Earth’s climate, the impacts of a changing climate, and the steps communities can take to adapt and mitigate the impacts; and Remote Sensing and Climate Science - where you can explore how remote sensing tools can be used to understand and assess climate change impacts and the affects of those impacts on communities from Alaska to Florida. Check out Living Landscapes here.

Educational Resources from Solve Climate by 2030

telly award

The Drawing Connections series highlights subtle, often-overlooked connections between climate change and the National Parks Service (NPS). NPS Climate Change Response Program and ConverSketch recently received a 2021 Silver Telly award in the category of Public Service and Activism for the Drawing Connections series. The Tellys are awarded annually to recognize excellence in video and television production. 

Click here to watch the latest episode on climate change and avian malaria in Haleakalā National Park. You can view the entire playlist on YouTube or

Animal? Mineral? Vegetable? I'm All Three!


Check out this really well done short video by well-known and respected scientists and a filmmaker on what is a coral. Great for the classroom or informal education settings.

Arctic Tundra May Contribute to Warmer World

arctic tundra

In this audio slideshow, an ecologist from the University of Florida describes the radiocarbon dating technique that scientists use to determine the amount of carbon within the permafrost of the Arctic tundra. Understanding the rate of carbon released as permafrost thaws is necessary to understand how this positive feedback mechanism is contributing to climate change. Find it here.

Conference Reports

Climate Change and Social Vulnerability in the United States: A Focus on Six Impacts from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

Climate change affects all Americans—regardless of socioeconomic status—and many impacts are projected to worsen. But individuals will not equally experience these changes. This report  improves our understanding of the degree to which four socially vulnerable populations— defined based on income, educational attainment, race and ethnicity, and age - may be more exposed to the highest impacts of climate change. Understanding the comparative risks to vulnerable populations is critical for developing effective and equitable strategies for responding to climate change. Download the report here.

NAAEE 2021 Conference and Research Symposium


Join the North American Association of Environmental Educators (NAAEE) and environmental educators from around the world as they celebrate the power of connection and the restorative role of nature. During this multi-day event they'll explore how environmental education is bringing people together to solve our most pressing problems and create more just and sustainable communities.

50th Annual Conference: October 12–15
18th Annual Research Symposium: October 7–8
Meetings and Workshops: October 4–15

Tiered pricing is available to help make this online experience accessible to all.

Learn more. Register. Share. >


The NOAA Office of Education 2022 undergraduate scholarship application is now open — apply today!

noaa scholarship

The EPP/MSI Undergraduate Scholarship provides funds for two years of undergraduate study to rising junior undergraduate students majoring in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) fields that directly support NOAA's mission. .Students attending Minority Serving Institutions as defined by the US Department of Education are eligible to apply for the program.

Find out more and apply here.

Science Grants for Science Communication & Outreach

Helping sow the seeds of innovative SciComm 

Application deadline:  11 October, 2021


Science communication (SciComm) to wider audiences is critical for building dialogue with communities around the world. The American Geophysical Union (AGU) is committed to supporting these efforts.  With that goal in mind, AGU will be offering grants (averaging $1,000 or less) to scientists around the world to encourage and jump-start outreach and engagement activities that will share science and its value with wider communities, from journalists to policymakers to students to members of the public.

Grants must be for activities/events that will begin before December 31, 2021.


Pisces Foundation Environmental Education Request for Proposals (RFP)


Pisces Foundation is now accepting concept notes (AKA Pre proposals) for a round of grants that will range in amount from approximately $50,000 to $150,000 for a 12-month period. Pisces will award grants to non-profit organizations and their collaborators building a movement for equitable and culturally relevant environmental and outdoor learning. Concept Notes are due on October 29, 2021, at 5 pm ET / 2 pm PT. Learn more>

Albert Einstein Distinguished Educator Fellowship (AEF)

Deadline to apply: 18 November 2021 


The Albert Einstein Distinguished Educator Fellowship (AEF) Program provides unique opportunities for accomplished K-12 science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) educators to serve 11 months in a Federal agency or U.S. Congressional office. Applicants must be U.S. citizens who are currently employed full-time in a U.S. public or private elementary or secondary school or school district. Applicants must have been teaching full-time in a public or private elementary or secondary school for at least five of the last seven years in a STEM discipline. The application deadline is November 18, at 8pm ET.

NOAA and National Sea Grant College Program to Award Funding for Marine Debris Prevention 


The NOAA Marine Debris Program is pleased to announce with the National Sea Grant College Program six awards for projects that prevent marine debris from entering marine, coastal, and Great Lakes environments around the country. The six competitively selected projects cover the southeast Atlantic, Pacific and Great Lakes waters, coming from Florida, Georgia, Hawai'i, Illinois-Indiana, Puerto Rico, and Wisconsin Sea Grant programs.

Learn More

Job Opportunities



Education Bytes

Science & Stewardship Bytes


  Ocean, Coastal Weather, Sea Ice, Ocean Life, Water

  Weather Extremes and Other Environmental News of Note

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