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Woods Hole GIS Users Group Participates in 8th Grade Science Classes

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photograph of Tammie Middleton and Erika Hammar-Klose talking to students
Tammie Middleton and Erika Hammar-Klose of the USGS WHFC talk with Lawrence School students about aerial photography and geographic data.
Throughout the 2000-'01 academic year, the Woods Hole Field Center (WHFC) GIS Users Group participated in a monthly outreach program with 8th grade physical science classes taught by Ms. Lynn Parks at the Lawrence School, Falmouth, MA. As an extension of ESRI's National GIS DAY, the outreach quickly turned into an initiative to visit each of Ms. Parks' classes, one class per month. The visit included a 10-minute Microsoft PowerPoint presentation explaining GIS and how the WHFC uses GIS in our seafloor-mapping activities. The students were engaged in thinking about how different types of geographic information affected their lives.

Following the presentation, the students were divided into two groups. One learned about GPS technology through the use of a laptop computer equipped with ESRI tracking software, USGS ortho-photo-quads of the school grounds, and a Garmin GPS unit. The students were tasked with navigating to a specific location on the school grounds (usually a car in the parking lot). At the start of the exercise, an aerial photo of the school grounds underlay their GPS location point and the point the students had to find. They thought the exercise was going to be easy until we removed the photo and talked about navigating with GPS at sea. They were amazed at how much harder it was to navigate without landmarks!

students use a GPS receiver
Lawrence school students navigate across school grounds with ESRI tracking software and a Garmin GPS unit.
The second group remained indoors and focused on map-making using aerial photography and infrastructure data from the Town of Falmouth. The students enjoyed locating their homes and favorite hangouts. The Town of Falmouth data also gave the students an idea of what goes into making a map and helped them visualize how we use data layers. After about 20 minutes, the groups switched exercises.

Throughout the year, the following WHFC members of the USGS Coastal and Marine Program have participated in the Lawrence School outreach: VeeAnn Cross, Jane Denny, Andrew Fox, Sarah Fuller, Ben Gutierrez, Erika Hammar-Klose, Jenna Hill, Tammie Middleton, Courtney Schupp, and Glynn Williams. Our plan is to continue this partnership with the Lawrence School in the future, making more visits to the physical science classes to talk about the use of GIS in geologic and oceanographic research.

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in this issue: Fieldwork cover story:
Mapping Puget Sound

Biscayne Nat'l Park

Glacier Bay Cruise

Tripod Deployment

Outreach GIS Group Teaches Science

Juneteenth Celebration

Meetings Geochemical Processes

Geologic Discipline EMAC

Wetlands Meeting

Awards Closing the Circle

Staff & Center News Eric Thompson

NAGT Summer Interns

Woods Hole Interns

Jerry Parker Memorial

Gaye Farris Re-Elected to STC Exec Board

Publications "Natural Gas Hydrates" Book

July Publications List

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Updated December 02, 2016 @ 12:09 PM (THF)