2014 PAEE Conference
Spheres of Influence:
Shaping the Curve of Environmental Education
March 14-15, 2014
Antiochian Village, (near) Ligonier, PA
|Friday Keynote Speaker
April Claus, Director of Education
Fern Hollow Nature Center, Sewickley, PA.
|Saturday Keynote Speaker
Steven Van Matre
International Chair of
The Institute for Earth Education
This year presenters were are asked to think about how their work fits into one of the four spheres of the earth. According to the newly release national Next Generation Science Standards, “Earth’s major systems are the geosphere (solid and molten rock, soil, and sediments), the hydrosphere (water and ice), the atmosphere (air), and the biosphere (living things, including humans). These systems interact in multiple ways to affect Earth’s surface materials and processes. The ocean supports a variety of ecosystems and organisms, shapes landforms, and influences climate. Winds and clouds in the atmosphere interact with the landforms to determine patterns of weather (5-ESS2-1)”.
Spheres of Influence workshop strands are:
Biosphere: The biosphere encompasses all the living things that make up our planet. Some workshop ideas in this strand include: discussing issues that relate to biodiversity in Pennsylvania, field identification 101, Invasive plants of Pennsylvania, and Citizen Science project ideas.
Hydrosphere: The hydrosphere is composed of all of the water on or near the earth. This includes the oceans, rivers, lakes, and even the moisture in the air. Some ideas for workshops in this strand include: watershed education, rain barrels and rain gardens, citizen science projects, green roofs, raising trout in the classroom, and creating partnerships with watershed groups.
Atmosphere: The atmosphere is the body of air which surrounds our planet. Some workshop ideas in this strand include: climate change education, air pollution, air and weather monitoring with students, and teaching astronomy.
Geosphere: The lithosphere is the solid, rocky crust covering entire planet. Some workshop ideas in this strand include: shale fracking, using GPS and GIS with students, agriculture in the classroom, growing and cooking with students, reclaiming abandoned land, building community with agriculture, geocaching, and teaching about rocks and minerals.
Career-sphere: The career-sphere is composed of all of the different elements that make up a career in science and environmental education. Some workshop ideas in this strand include: grant writing, marketing, incorporating the new NGSS standards, STEM and STEAM programs, using technology in programs, incorporating citizen science, life-long careers in the science education field, resume writing, innovative ways to present programs and professional development. This strand will also include workshops for the new EE-certification program, including environmental education fundamentals, teaching to a diverse audience, safety while teaching in an outdoor setting and provide more information for those interested in participating in the certification program.
More information will be coming shortly!