2009 Fall Meeting          
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Cite abstracts as Author(s) (2009), Title, Eos Trans. AGU,
(52), Fall Meet. Suppl., Abstract xxxxx-xx

HR: 1455h
AN: ED33D-02
TI: A Teacher Professional Development Program for an Authentic Citizen-Science Program: GLOBE at Night
AU: Walker, C E
EM: cwalker@noao.edu
AF: Education & Public Outreach, National Optical Astronomy Observatory, Tucson, AZ, United States
AU: Pompea, S M
EM: spompea@noao.edu
AF: Education & Public Outreach, National Optical Astronomy Observatory, Tucson, AZ, United States
AU: Sparks, R
EM: rsparks@noao.edu
AF: Education & Public Outreach, National Optical Astronomy Observatory, Tucson, AZ, United States
AB: An authentic science research program in the classroom can take many forms as can the teacher professional development that accompanies the programs. One different approach invites educators to invoke 21st century skills with their students while focusing on a real-world issue of both local and global concern. The citizen-science program on light pollution, GLOBE at Night, has students and the general public measure the darkness of their local skies and contribute observations online to a world map. They do this by looking toward Orion for the faintest stars and matching what they see to one of seven different star maps. (For more precise measurements, digital sky-brightness meters are used.) These measurements can be compared with data from the previous 4 years, as well as with satellite data, population densities, and electrical power-usage maps. Measurements can be examined online via Google Earth or other tools and are downloadable as datasets from the website. Data from multiple locations in one city or region are especially interesting, and have been used as the basis of research in a classroom or science fair project or even to inform the development of public policy. This year, GLOBE at Night has been expanding its role in training educators on fundamental concepts and data collection to include more data analysis for a topical variety of local projects. Many on-site workshops have and are being given to teachers in grades 5 through high school. Some of the U.S. school communities created mini-campaigns that combined local students with public advocates and representatives from local city and county governments, and also collaborated with students in Wales, Canada, Romania and north-central Chile (near major observatories). Internationally, training has been given via on-line forums, telecon-powerpoint presentations, videoconferencing via Skype, and blogs. Informal educators have come from national and international networks of science, technology and nature centers, as well as amateur astronomer associations. From these various experiences, we will discuss success stories and lessons learned as well as future plans for sustainability. This work was supported by a grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) Astronomy Division. GLOBE at Night is hosted by the National Optical Astronomy Observatory, which is operated by the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy (AURA), Inc. under cooperative agreement with NSF.
UR: http://www.globe.gov/globeatnight/
DE: [0810] EDUCATION / Post-secondary education
DE: [0815] EDUCATION / Informal education
DE: [0830] EDUCATION / Teacher training
SC: Education and Human Resources (ED)
MN: 2009 Fall Meeting