Wednesday, January 11, 2017


NCGE's GeoCamp Iceland Institute is a graduate level equivalent short course in geographic inquiry and field methods for in-service teachers. Iceland's extraordinary and unique landscapes serve as the classroom and laboratory from July 8-17, 2017. Guided by Icelandic field leaders, participants will learn directly from Iceland's renewable energy experts, sail on a fishing vessel, visit active volcanoes, and walk upon receding glaciers and in rift valleys. Working alongside local teachers, participants have the opportunity to explore historic sites and enjoy Icelandic foods, and much more!

GeoCamp Iceland 2017 Applications should be returned by January 15, 2017.

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Course Starts Tomorrow: Last Chance to Enroll

Telling Your Story with Esri Story Maps COURSE 

This course will enable participants to understand why stories can be effectively told with today’s interactive, web-based story maps, learn how to teach and assess student work with story maps, and learn how to create story maps that incorporate sounds, video, photographs, narrative, and other multimedia. Through readings, videos, quizzes, discussion with your colleagues, and hands-on activities, you will learn how and why to create story maps using the ArcGIS Online platform and be confident that you can use these tools in your instruction.

Course Background: 

For thousands of years, maps have been used to tell stories. These maps told which lands were “known” and which lands were “terra incognita”, coastlines and new political boundaries, and routes of famous explorers. As in the past, maps are used today to tell stories about the regions, places, and physical and cultural characteristics of our world.

Today’s maps are detailed, allowing exploration of the median age and income of a community’s neighborhoods and the chemical conditions of water in specific wells or soil in a specific field. Maps give information about data that is occurring in real time—such as current wildfire extents, weather, earthquakes, or the location of all of a city’s buses. Maps describe historical events from famous battles to land use changes over time in a rainforest. Maps can be in two dimensions, and three dimensions, and can be accessed on any device—smartphone, tablet, or laptop computer. They can be embedded in web pages and other multimedia and other tools, and can be updated instantly by citizen scientists using their smartphones. Maps cover thousands of relevant themes and phenomena and scales–from local to global scale.

Another key difference between modern maps versus those of the past is that modern maps are much more than reference documents. True, maps still show us where things are. But they are valued because they help us understand the “whys” of “where” – by allowing us to use spatial analytical tools to detect patterns, relationships, and trends. Thus, maps have become critical analytical tools that can help us solve the problems in our world that are growing more complex and increasingly affect our everyday lives. These include epidemics, biodiversity loss, natural hazards, agricultural viability, political instability, climate change, food security, energy, water quality and quantity, and many more.

Globally, you could make maps of any of the above themes. In your own community, you could tell stories about sports, community gardens, housing type, schools and libraries and other community resources, tree cover, litter and graffiti, zoning changes, historical settlement, how your community compares to others across your region or to those halfway around the world, and other aspects of your community through these live story maps. Students can use story maps to report on the results of their investigations. As a researcher, you or your students could use these maps to investigate pertinent issues in human health, sociology, political geography, public safety, or a host of other disciplines. As an instructor, you could use maps to tell stories to enhance your lessons in courses ranging from geography to biology to history to language arts to earth science to mathematics, and other disciplines. You can use story maps to assess student work and a method whereby students can communicate their investigations to you and to their peers.

Begins Winter 2017 Term: 4 January 2017 – 8 February 2017
Price: $95.00
For More Information Video:
To register for this course, click here.
Carolyn Gardner: or Joseph Kerski (below).

Facilitator and Contact Information: 

Instructor: Joseph J. Kerski, Ph.D., GISP.
Video Channel:
Text and Voice: 303-625-3925

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

2017 NCGE Awards

National Council for Geographic Education (NCGE) is now accepting nominations for the 2017 awards cycle. Awards are given for teaching, research, and service, and all award recipients will be honored at the 2017 National Conference on Geography Education in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

NCGE is dedicated to recognizing educators and advocates who have made outstanding contributions to geography education. NCGE's highest award is the George J Miller Award, named for NCGE's founder and long-time editor of the Journal of Geography. Award nomination materials can be submitted in the spring to the NCGE Central Office. The materials are then forwarded to the appropriate committees for evaluation. Winners are announced in early summer and recipients are recognized at a special ceremony during NCGE's annual conference.

Learn more about award deadlines and qualifications here.

Monday, December 12, 2016

NCGE's GeoCamp Iceland Institute

Explore Iceland's Changing Landscapes and Diverse Environments for Ten Days. GeoCamp Iceland is the Professional Development Experience of a Lifetime!

WHEN: July 8-17, 2017

COST: $2,500.00 plus airfare*

WHO: The GeoCamp Iceland Institute is a graduate level equivalent short course in geographic inquiry and field methods for up to twenty-five (25) in-service teachers and college/university professors who conduct professional development activities for teachers. Educators who teach any of the Social Studies, Earth or Environmental Sciences, or any subject where the applicant can make an explicit connection to the National Geography Standards within his/her course curriculum.

WHAT: Iceland’s extraordinary and unique landscapes will be the classroom and laboratory. The course will draw content from several important geographic themes including natural hazards and disaster prevention; human settlement and environmental adaptation; changing geopolitical spheres of influence; sense of place; and global environmental change. Icelandic field leaders will be our guides. We will learn directly from Iceland’s renewable energy experts, visit a fishing vessel and fish processing plant, observe active volcanoes and walk upon receding glaciers and in rift valleys. Led by local guides we will explore historic sites and enjoy Icelandic foods. Participants will be housed in apartments at the former U.S. Naval installation at Keflavik on the Reykjanes Peninsula, a thirty-minute drive from Reykjavik and 20 minutes from Iceland’s famous geothermal tourist attraction, the Blue Lagoon pool and spa. Fee includes lodging, meals, ground transportation, course materials, and honoraria for expert guides and presentations. Participants will want to budget extra for incidentals and souvenirs.

HOW: Applications should be returned by January 15, 2017. Applicants will be notified of acceptance by January 25, 2017. Cross-disciplinary collaboration will be encouraged and applications from teams of teachers in the same school or school district are welcome. Participants will begin course readings and assignments in March 2017 in preparation for the fieldwork in Iceland. Some material may be presented through 1-2 live webinars. Travel arrangements will be made at this time.

GeoCamp Iceland 2017 Application

Learn more about this unique opportunity here!

Friday, December 9, 2016

2017 Rocky Mountain National Park Teacher In Residence

The Teacher in Residence (TiR) program at Rocky Mountain National Park provides opportunities for in-service teachers of Colorado's Front Range who are within a one-day's field trip distance to spend June and July working in Rocky Mountain National Park connecting with the resources and participating in a variety of duties that suit their interests and the needs of the park's education program. Teachers lead activities and develop lesson plans based on their park experience for use in their classroom and in the park. The program focuses on teachers from schools with ethnically diverse student populations, who have had little or no experience with national parks or limited opportunity to explore them. Teachers from Title I schools are especially encouraged to apply.

Program Background
Teachers spend 8-10 weeks working and living in the park. During this time, the park provides a ranger uniform, shared housing, and a stipend. Once they return to their schools, teachers bring national parks into the classroom throughout the school year. During National Park Week in April, teachers engage their classrooms and other teachers in activities that relate to Rocky Mountain National Park.

Benefits - 

To Teachers:
  • Obtain a wide range of new knowledge and skills by working with park staff and partners
  • Enhance their curriculum in multiple content areas
  • Gain access to a wide array of teaching resources and tools 
  • Fulfill a life-long dream of working in a National Park
To Schoolchildren:
  • Provide an opportunity to connect to their nation's heritage in new and creative ways
  • Learn about volunteering and employment with the National Park Service 
  • Receive new tools and resources for exploring natural and cultural history
To Rocky Mountain National Park:
  • Reach new or under-served audiences
  • Build a network of enthusiastic, knowledgeable educators who are able to teach their students and colleagues about National Parks
  • Enrich the park visitor experience and the education program through the expertise and programming offered by the Teacher in Residence
Potential Park Experiences
Teacher in Residence assignments and projects will depend upon the individual hired and current park projects. Training in natural and cultural history and the National Park Service mission will be provided. Duties may include observing, preparing, and presenting educational or public programs; planning and facilitating summer camp programs; developing educational and interpretive materials and media; providing community outreach; working with other divisions in the Park; and assisting with teacher workshops.

Application Process
Applications are being accepted for summer 2017. The deadline is December 23, 2016. Download an application [PDF 132kb].

More Information
For more information contact Mark De Gregorio, Education Program Manager, via e-mail or by phone (970-586-3777).

Thursday, December 8, 2016

2017 American Historical Association Annual Meeting

The American Historical Association invites history educators to attend their 2017 annual meeting. Registration is only $45 ($50 after December 16). The program of events includes professional development, practical ideas for the classroom, the latest historical scholarship, and opportunities to share best practices. Register early to reserve your spot in Saturday’s K-12 Workshop on using primary sources to teach the complexity of westward expansion. Workshop facilitators Patricia Nelson Limerick, Center of the American West; Brenda Santos, Achievement First and member of AHA Council; and Fritz Fischer, University of Northern Colorado will guide small groups through this interactive half-day session.

Teaching is an essential skill for any historian. That's why AHA17's teaching and learning program caters to all career stages and all levels of history. You will find numerous opportunities to enhance your teaching and discover more about the value of learning history. Learn more about session at their Teaching and Learning at AHA17 Guide.

Explore the AHA’s online resources for history education:

Teaching and Learning video library

Includes videos from past K-12 Educator Workshops, as well as interviews and other sessions

Classroom materials

Materials you can use in designing your own courses: syllabi, reading lists, sample assignments, course modules, etc. These are organized thematically, by resource type, and by the project or initiative that created the resource.

Approaches to Teaching

Information on the initiatives and links to resources that will help you think about new ways of approaching teaching.

The Kristin Alvarez Memorial Scholarship

Dr. Kristin J. Alvarez, past president of the National Council for Geographic Education, was committed to Geographic Education for over 30 years. Selected as a Florida teacher for the National Geographic Society’s Summer Geographic Institute of 1989, Kristin became a National Geographic Teacher Consultant and active contributor to the Florida Geographic Alliance. She completed a doctorate of Geography Education at the University of Southern Mississippi, and became an Assistant and Associate Professor of Geography and Social Studies Education at Keene State University in New Hampshire. While she served as Coordinator of the New Hampshire Geographic Alliance for 5 years, she completed a graduate certificate in GIS from Eastern Michigan University in 2006. Dr. Alvarez immediately began integrating geospatial technologies into her NHGA summer institute to introduce GIS and GPS into K-12 curricula. In 2009, Dr. Alvarez was invited to join the faculty of the University of Redlands in a new initiative to develop teacher education and geospatial technology offerings, and co-designed its innovative Spatial Literacy for Educators Program. She served as NCGE President in 2010. Dr. Alvarez died at home in January, 2012.

To continue the spirit of Dr. Alvarez’s work with hundreds of educators across the United States, the Kristin Alvarez Memorial NCGE President Scholarship has been awarded annually for five years since 2012. The scholarship recognizes and supports an educator who demonstrates effort and interest in furthering Spatial Literacy, Geographic Education, Pre-service Teacher Education, or Geospatial Technologies such as GIS, GPS, or online geospatial teaching and learning.

You are invited to contribute to the Memorial NCGE President Kristin Alvarez Scholarship. 2017 is the 5th and final year of the Memorial Scholarship.

Applications are DUE: December 31, 2016.

If you wish to apply, nominate a colleague, or contribute, please see the
brochure and application forms.