GSA Annual Meeting in Denver, Colorado, USA - 2016

Paper No. 10-11
Presentation Time: 10:45 AM


XU, Cassie, Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, Education and Outreach Office, Columbia University, 61 Route 9w, Palisades, NY 10964, NEWTON, Robert, Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, 61 Route 9w, Palisades, NY 10964, TURRIN, Margaret J., Education Coordinator, Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory of Columbia University, 61 Rt. 9W, Palisades, NY 10964, HEMMING, Sidney, Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences and Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, Columbia University, Palisades, NY 10964, D'ANDREA, William J., Lamont Doherty Earth Observatory, Columbia University, 61 Rte 9W, Palisades, NY 10964 and PASSOW, Michael J., Earth2Class Workshops for Teachers, Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, Columbia University, 61 Rt 9W, Borehole Building, Palisades, NY 10964,

The Framework for K-12 Scienceenvisions that students will deepen their understanding of scientific ideas over time by engaging in practices that scientists actually use. The Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory (LDEO) of Columbia University offers a suite of educational programs for high school students that strongly support this NGSS goal.

LDEO offers students access to vibrant and world-class research laboratories and scientists who have contributed to our understanding about the composition of the solid Earth, ocean interactions, ice caps, atmosphere, and climate change. They become part of an active research campus with state-of-the-art research facilities as they engage with scientists and participate in authentic research. Our programs include: A Day in the Life of the Hudson River (giving students in NYC first exposure to canoeing and collecting water samples, gathering information on currents and salinity along the Hudson River to construct a comprehensive picture of the dynamics along the estuary); Rockland PLUS (hands-on educational experiences for students interested in planning for sustainable development in their own communities); the Secondary School Field Research program (project-based instructional programs focused on biodiversity and environmental research in the wetlands of the New York metro area); and internship programs with local schools. Scientific content varies across the programs, with some students analyzing deep-sea sediments collected by a drilling vessel, and some examining rocks formed during an interglacial period 125,000 years ago to gain new insights about sea-level change, while others study invasive Phragmites australis.

Programs differ in length and location, but have fundamental commonalities: an emphasis on mentoring by early career and senior scientists, minimum scaffolding, treating data as publishable and ensuring rigorous protocols, and year-round school involvement. These programs can serve as important models to developing and scaling programs that support the NGSS vision of helping students better understand how scientific knowledge develops and experience meaningful connections between crosscutting concepts and disciplinary ideas.