In 1996 a national teacher enhancement course on the basics of weather and climate was created by the AMS Education Program with NSF support and offered through local teacher-led teams. Partially delivered via the Internet, the DataStreme Atmosphere course proved to be a highly motivational and effective introduction to meteorology for K-12 teachers across the nation. The success of DataStreme Atmosphere inspired another teacher enhancement course, Water in the Earth System (WES) which focuses on the global water cycle as a vehicle to explore Earth system science. First offered in Spring 2001, WES utilizes the same delivery model as DataStreme Atmosphere (i.e., local implementation teams, Internet delivery).
To date, Project ATMOSPHERE, Maury Project, DataStreme Atmosphere and WES peer-trainers have offered thousands of teacher workshops nationwide on the fundamentals of meteorology, physical oceanography, and hydrology. Most of these peer-trainers are also distance-learning course alumni who have provided resource assistance and training to their colleagues in their schools and districts. Many have developed the self-confidence to become leaders in local and state science curriculum reform efforts. The tens of thousands of second-tier trained teachers have influenced millions of students by their use of exciting and scientifically accurate investigations that model inquiry-based science.