UW-L NSF K-12 GeoED Project

Welcome to GeoED Project webpage.  This project is dedicated to the improvement of geoscience education in our schools.  In 2008, the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse Department of Geography & Earth Science, in collaboration with the School District of La Crosse (Wisconsin), received a grant from the National Science Foundation to undertake research aimed at finding ways to improve K-12 geoscience education.  Teachers and other educators can obtain lesson plans, data sets, software and other teaching materials developed and used by this project from this website.

The principle investigators wish to thank the NSF Directorate of Geosciences for its support for this research through its grant award #0807855, and project title: RUI-Integrating Geographic Information Science into a K-12 Curriculum on Climate Change

The goal of this project was to provide geoscience, geography and science teachers in the greater La Crosse area with the analytical tools of geospatial science so they can develop lesson modules that integrate these tools into the understanding of climate change. These tools allow K-12 teachers to customize lesson plans appropriate for their levels of instruction with the use of real world data collected by government agencies such as NOAA, NASA, USGS, US Census Bureau as well as non-profit educational organizations such as the National Council for Geographic Education (NCGE) and the Association of American Geographers (AAG).

workshop instructionDuring the summers of 2009 an 2010, the principle investigators conducted week-long workshops for La Crosse area teachers using the UW-L GIS labs.  Participants were provided with intensive instruction on the use of GIS, GPS, cartographic animation, online mapping, and remote sensing techniques to develop lesson modules that integrate these technologies with real world data. Mapping software used during the workshops is freely available in the public domain, eliminating costs for schools to access and employ these applications.  Software titles include: ArcExplorer Java Edition (AEJEE), Google Map, Google Earth, DNR Garmin, Advanced GIF Animator, and Flex Projector. Datasets include a wide range of physical and demographic data that relate to climate change.

Teachers who participated in the workshops used real data collected and organized by the principle investigators to learn the fundamentals of geospatial techniques.  As part of the program, the teachers were required to develop lesson modules suitable for their respective classrooms.  These lesson plans were submitted to the principle investigators and are now available, through this website, to any teacher wishing to implement them in their own classrooms.