3.2A GLOBE Schools: Monitoring the Local Environment; Engaging Students in Environmental Stewardship (Formerly Poster 204)

Tuesday, 8 January 2013: 1:45 PM
Room 15 (Austin Convention Center)
Gary Randolph, UCAR, Boulder, CO; and T. Andersen, J. Mackaro, J. S. Malmberg, S. Tessendorf, and K. Wegner

The GLOBE Program (www.globe.gov), Global Learning and Observations to Benefit the Environment, is an international science and education program, engaging teachers and their students in an exploration of the environment. Using scientific protocols, students collect environmental data in their community, ask questions, develop scientific projects, and ultimately gain a better understanding of their world. GLOBE materials and protocols have been used in over 25,000 schools in over 110 countries since 1995.

A major component of GLOBE's mission is to enhance environmental literacy and stewardship. Unlike environmental literacy which can be taught from a book, environmental stewardship, protecting our shared natural resources for future generations, is something that comes from within, something that comes from connecting oneself with the natural world and wanting to protect it. GLOBE Partners and Teachers provide the GLOBE community with evidence on how the mission of environmental stewardship is progressing. This poster will highlight several examples from the field exemplifying how the GLOBE Program is addressing this component of its mission.

The first example comes from the Czech Republic. For decades, the students of Andělsk√° Hora (Angel's Mountain) Primary School have borne witness to the decimation of hundreds of thousands of common toads (Bufo bufo) by automobiles as they migrate across a busy road near the school. Many students over the years have asked how the toads might be saved. A primary challenge in saving the toads is that they migrate at different dates each year, making it difficult to anticipate their migration. Working with local biologists and environmental NGOs, the students began to understand that the migration was related to air and soil temperature. They asked whether they could determine the migration date from using the data they collect for the GLOBE Program. They soon had their answer. The students were able to capture and transport to safety over 1500 frogs in 2009 and 2010.

The second example comes from Pakistan. Students and their teachers at the Overseas Pakistanis Foundation (OPF) Girls College participate in GLOBE activities as a regular part of the curriculum. Students have been motivated to design their own environmental projects and raise community awareness about environmental issues. Students became concerned about their local stream and worked to clean it up, removing items such as chip bags, empty juice packets, and empty bottles. Both teachers and students found great satisfaction as their actions provided clean water to small fish and other creatures living in the stream. GLOBE teacher Afiya Absar observed that "as they become involved in different GLOBE protocols and activities throughout the year, a mutual love and care for the environment forms among the students."es throughout the year, a mutual love and care for the environment forms among the students."

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