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Guest blog by Sean Russell: Join OCEARCH’s Chris Fischer for an NMEA Student Webinar

Posted By Lisa D. Tossey, Wednesday, April 26, 2017

OCEARCH webinar

At NMEA, we’re working to inspire and support the next generation of marine science educators and conservationists. As part of this effort, we’re excited to announce our first NMEA Student Webinar will take place on Friday, May 5 at 2 p.m. EST and feature special guest, OCEARCH Founding Chairman and Expedition Leader, Chris Fischer. Through his presentation, Collaborative White Shark Science, Chris will share his experiences leading global shark research expeditions and OCEARCH’s work with scientists and students to drive shark conservation efforts. Individual students and classrooms are invited to join NMEA for this special, free presentation. To participate, please complete this sign-up form. Instructions for joining the webinar will be e-mailed to all registered participants in advance!

Chris is an ocean explorer who's led 25 global expeditions researching great white sharks, tiger sharks, and other apex predators to advance conservation, education, and public safety. Through socially innovative partnerships with Costa Sunglasses, YETI Coolers, Shell, Contender, Yamaha, SAFE Boats, and Landry’s Inc., OCEARCH travels the world enabling teams of regional and international scientists by providing them with 15 minutes of unprecedented hands-on access to mature sharks to conduct approximately 12 studies on each animal.

In 2013, Fischer launched the Global Shark Tracker website and mobile app, used by millions worldwide, as part of his vision for ultimate inclusion and open source sharing of data. In 2014 he announced a new Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) curriculum based on the Tracker, developed in partnership with Landry’s. Teachers have downloaded more than 3,900 lesson plans to date.

He’s appeared in 210 TV episodes on the National Geographic Channel, HISTORY, ESPN, and others. His work has generated 8 billion media impressions worldwide, furthering his mission of bringing the ocean into everyone’s lives.

Fischer is a recipient of The Explorers Club 2014 Lowell Thomas Medal for Imagination in Exploration, joining the ranks of the world’s greatest explorers. He is the Founding Chairman of OCEARCH, winner of the 2014 Nominet Trust 100 Award, recognizing the world’s 100 most inspiring examples of social innovation.

Working aboard the 126 ft. M/V OCEARCH vessel, 131 scientists from 70 institutions are generating unprecedented research data, filling critical knowledge gaps to save shark and human lives. More than 50 scientific papers are in process as a result.

Be sure to complete the registration form and join us for this special event!

- Sean Russell, NMEA Board of Directors

Tags:  webinar  youth 

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Check your inbox for our spring newsletter

Posted By Lisa D. Tossey, Saturday, March 25, 2017
Updated: Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Spring 2017 NewsletterOur spring newsletter is out!

It features an update on our participation in NSTA's 2018 and 2019 conferences and the latest on our annual NMEA17 conference, which will be held in Charleston, SC. It also provides updates on our winter ocean literacy webinar series and international ocean literacy efforts, as well as other news items and deadline reminders! 

Didn't see it in your inbox? No worries, you can access it here, and update your contact email or sign-up for future mailings here >

Tags:  newsletter 

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NMEA at NSTA 2017 in Los Angeles and looking ahead to NSTA 2018

Posted By Lisa D. Tossey, Thursday, March 23, 2017
Updated: Thursday, March 23, 2017

NSTA 2017 logo

Are you attending the annual National Science Teachers Association conference in Los Angeles next week? Don't miss our Share-a-thon and track of sessions on Thursday! 

You can find us at Petree Hall D in the Los Angeles Convention Center on March 30 and a quick view of our schedule is below. For more details, download our flyer

Also, are you thinking about attending or presenting at the 2018 NSTA Annual Conference in Atlanta next year? We will be hosting a "Track of Sessions" at the conference once again and we are hoping you will submit a proposal! Download this Word document for full details >

NMEA at NSTA 2017 - March 30 Schedule

8:00 - 9:00 a.m.
A Whale of a Tale Share-A-Thon

9:30 - 10:30 a.m.
Aquaponics Toward Urban Sustainability, Linda Chilton

11:00 a.m. - Noon
Sharks4Kids, Leann Winn

12:30 - 1:30 p.m. 
Teach Marine Biology instead of biology to NGSS & Common Core Standards, Mark Friedman

2:00 - 3:00 p.m.
Discovering the World of Aquaculture with K-5 students, Carla Scocchi, Laurie Bragg, Laura Wilson, and Sarah Sparks

3:30 - 4:30 p.m.
Tagging and Tracking Sharks – What’s your hypothesis?, Jessie Kastler

5:00 - 6:00 p.m. 
Students study the seas; in-classroom STEM oceanography projects inspire global awareness and science literacy, Dick Baldwin


Tags:  NSTA 

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Guest Blog: International Ocean Literacy Survey update

Posted By Lisa D. Tossey, Monday, March 20, 2017

We would like to provide everyone with an update on the progress we have made with the International Ocean Literacy Survey, and to once again thank everyone for their support and participation in this all-volunteer effort across 24 countries. 

We administered Version 2 of the survey last fall in order to test the survey items themselves to see if they functioned well individually and together as a survey. The survey was taken by almost 7,000 students ages 16-18 years old in 17 languages in 24 countries! We are impressed and optimistic at how well the survey performed.

The results in the infographic below are only for the Ocean Literacy knowledge portion of the survey. We are still analyzing the results for the attitude portion of the survey, and we will send those findings later this spring. (You can also download this infographic in PDF format here > )

OL Survey Infographic 1

OL Survey Infographic 2

OL Survey Infographic 3

Our next steps are:

  • If you helped us collect data by administering the survey in your country and would like to have access to your raw data, please contact us. We are currently working on developing a system to prep the data for you.
  • We will be convening an expert, international advisory panel to review and guide our efforts to ensure both the content validity and the statistical integrity of the work we are doing.
  • We will be revising and updating the survey based on the findings and the contributions from the advisory panel. Version 3 of the survey will be ready for the next round of testing by the beginning of the next academic year.

Again, we deeply appreciate everyone's help and are confident that together we will develop a valid, reliable, and valuable tool that can be used around the world to measure and inform our progress toward building an ocean literate society!

Craig Strang
Géraldine Fauville
Mac Cannady

Tags:  international  Ocean Literacy 

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NMEA Ocean Literacy Committee hosts three-part winter webinar series on Ocean Literacy

Posted By Lisa D. Tossey, Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Ocean Literacy guide

The NMEA Ocean Literacy Committee hosted a three-part webinar series this winter, with each webinar covering a different topic and the topics building on the one prior. Details for each webinar and links to recordings of them can be found below. 

Webinar 1: Exploring and Applying the Ocean Literacy Scope and Sequence for Grades K–12

View a recording of this webinar here > 

This interactive webinar engaged participants in opportunities to explore the Ocean Literacy Scope and Sequence for Grades K–12. It discussed how to apply these grade-level appropriate conceptual progressions, designed to increase Ocean Literacy, to the development of learning experiences and instructional materials for use in K–12 classrooms, informal environments, and professional learning opportunities for educators.

Presented by:

  • Catherine Halversen, Lawrence Hall of Science at UC Berkeley
  • Craig Strang, Lawrence Hall of Science at UC Berkeley
  • Lynn Tran, Lawrence Hall of Science at UC Berkeley
  • Lynn Whitley, Wrigley Institute of Environmental Studies, University of Southern California

Duration: 90 minutes

NOTE: During this webinar, it was suggested participants have ready access to a conceptual flow diagram that was investigated, a copy of which can be found here >

Webinar 2: Alignment of the Ocean Literacy Framework with the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)

View a recording of this webinar here > 

This webinar built participant's familiarity and understanding of the Ocean Literacy - NGSS alignment tool. It described why alignment of the Ocean Literacy Framework with NGSS is needed, and explained the rating scale used to describe the different relationships between the Ocean Literacy Principles and the Disciplinary Core Ideas that comprise the Next Generation Science Standards. Participants explored the alignment tool through the examination of particular grade bands, Ocean Literacy Principles and DCIs, along with the ratings explanations provided by a panel of experts.

Presented by: 

  • Sarah Pedamonte, Lawrence Hall of Science at UC Berkeley
  • Craig Strang, Lawrence Hall of Science at UC Berkeley
  • Lynn Whitley, Wrigley Institute of Environmental Studies, University of Southern California

NOTE: During this webinar, we suggested participants have ready access to the alignment documents, as well as a copy of the NGSS and the Ocean Literacy Scope and Sequence.

Prior to this webinar, we recommended watching this video introduction to the NGSS in NSTA’s Learning Center if you are not familiar with the Next Generation Science Standards.

Duration: 60 minutes

Instructions for Viewers: 
Please note that at several points during this webinar you will want to pause the recording to explore the alignment documents yourself. The recorded webinar has been edited to eliminate the time periods when we gave participants an opportunity to review these documents before moving on to the next part of the presentation.

Webinar 3: Organizing for Ocean Literacy - Implementation at Different Scales

View a recording of this webinar here > 

This webinar provided examples of how educators, scientists, and policy makers have deployed the Ocean Literacy Framework and the Ocean Literacy/NGSS Alignment document. It focused on moving from ideas to impact by looking at examples of Ocean Literacy-inspired curricula, non-formal programs with a focus on Ocean Literacy, and how the alignment of NGSS with Ocean Literacy can be leveraged to support funding efforts, strategic planning activity, and teacher professional learning.

Presented by:

  • Kurt Holland, Lead Science Communicator, Broader Impacts West
  • Diana Payne, Connecticut Sea Grant
  • Sarah Schoedinger, NOAA Office of Education

Duration: 60 minutes 

Webinar organizers are interested in feedback on this webinar. After viewing it, please take a couple minutes to answer four brief questions.

Tags:  Ocean Literacy  webinar 

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Guest Blog by FMSEA: Registration now open for Ocean Literacy conference

Posted By Lisa D. Tossey, Monday, February 13, 2017

FMSEA OL Conference

We are happy to announce that registration for our conference, FMSEA 2017: FMSEA on the First Coast: Shining Light on Ocean Literacy,  is now open!

Please join us May 4-7 in Saint Augustine, Fla.  Our conference hotel is the Hampton Inn and Suites, Vilano Beach.  We have secured a rate of $164 a night, so please mention FMSEA when you make your reservation.

More information on the conference, including our annual award nominations, and scholarship applications can be found here > 

You can register for the conference here - be sure to register by March 31 to secure the early bird rate!

We can't wait to "sea" you there!

- FMSEA Board

Tags:  fmsea  Ocean Literacy 

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Letter to members from NMEA President Tami Lunsford

Posted By Lisa D. Tossey, Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Dear NMEA,

This year, more than ever, we need to make our voices heard. “Making known the world of water” is a passion that we all share and strive to help others better understand as well. Why is that so important? Why does that matter? Knowing about the ocean is critical to an understanding of our climate, our economy, our food, our security, and even the air we breathe, yet curriculum and science standards in our education systems rarely include the ocean. Learning about oceans, lakes, and rivers, can encourage our youth and the general public to gain a love for nature and for science itself. So what can we do? We can each share how our love for the ocean has inspired us to love science. We can share how learning about the ocean has supported us to have the critical thinking skills that are so important in understanding the major environmental challenges that we face today.

I would go further to say that we MUST each use our knowledge and passion to help people to see the beauty of the scientific process of taking in evidence,analyzing it, asking questions, taking in new evidence, making claims based on that evidence, and sharing that evidence broadly with others to check the validity of your claims. I work on this everyday with my students, as I am sure each of you do with your audience, and I am often blown away by what they create and are inspired to do. I currently have one group weaving sleeping mats for the homeless out of plastic bags they gathered to recycle; one group made a mural out of plastic bottle caps that will travel to local schools and business; one group gathered samples of environmentally-friendly sunblock to donate to local summer camps, and the list goes on and on. There is hope and we are part of that hope, but there is so much more to do.

This is why the NMEA Fundraising and Development committee recently asked the membership to consider donating funds to help support me, as a high school science teacher and the current NMEA President, to attend the Blue Vision Summit in DC in May. NMEA has never been represented at that event, and we believe it is time to broaden NMEA's participation in such national events, both to further our mission and to gather critical information to inform our membership of the trends in policy. We also want to encourage each of you to consider attending the event to represent your region as well, especially if you are in one of the priority states of Alabama, Connecticut, Louisiana, Mississippi, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, and Texas. Thank you for your continuing passion and support for NMEA!


Tami Lunsford

NMEA President

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Letter to members from NMEA Fundraising & Development Committee

Posted By Lisa D. Tossey, Tuesday, January 31, 2017
Updated: Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Blue Vision Summit logoDear Members,

This May, Blue Frontiers will host the sixth Blue Vision Summit in Washington, DC. 

"The Blue Vision Summit is an ocean conference bringing ocean conservation leaders together every two years to network, build the blue movement, and meet with the Administration and Congress to restore the blue in our red, white, and blue."

NMEA has been invited to participate in the Summit, where we intend to bring our collective voice, the voice of the premier marine education organization, to this important gathering.

However, the registration and associated costs incurred to send our President to this summit extend beyond the 2017 NMEA budget. This is why we reach out to you, our members, to provide the financial support to ensure we are represented at the Blue Visions Summit.

NMEA members led the way in creating the Seven Essential Principles of Ocean Literacy. NMEA led the effort to add aquatic examples to the National Science Standards, and have continued this effort with the Next Generation Science Standards. It makes sense that NMEA should lead the effort to have marine education included in the Blue Visions Summit as well. We should be part of the voice talking to politicians about the value of the ocean.

Your support will help our President to represent NMEA by providing an in person presence on a national and international stage. Through your donation you are supporting the capacity of NMEA to be relevant and representative of our shared mission and values at this and future engagements.

We hope to raise $650.00 before April 1. Thank you for any contributions you can make! Donations may be made securely through our website here >

NMEA Fundraising & Development Committee

Tags:  fundraising 

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Check your inbox for our winter newsletter

Posted By Lisa D. Tossey, Thursday, December 22, 2016

 Winter 2016 newsletter

Our winter newsletter is out!

It features an update on our annual NMEA17 conference which will be held in Charleston, SC., the latest issue of our journal, Current, registration information for a new webinar series by our Ocean Literacy committee, and some fun updates on what a few of our members have been up to! 

Didn't see it in your inbox? No worries, you can access it here, and update your contact email or sign-up for future mailings here >

Tags:  newsletter 

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From the Editor - Fall/Winter issue of Current is now available online for members

Posted By Lisa D. Tossey, Friday, December 16, 2016

Fall Winter Current 2016We’re excited to bring you another general issue of Current featuring articles by NMEA members from all over the country and overseas to provide new ways to discover the “world of water.” In this issue, you’ll find a variety of engaging articles and activities, including lessons on sources, impacts, and solutions to microplastics, a look at the PolarTREC program from a NMEA member who shares her experiences in the Arctic Circle, as well as many other exciting topics.

Please continue to send in your original manuscripts on research, lessons, resources, or strategies focused on marine education, including science, art, literature, and maritime history!

The next deadline for submitting articles for consideration in the spring/summer 2017 general issue of Current is April 10, 2017. And don’t forget to stay connected to the NMEA by liking us on Facebook and following us on Twitter for the latest news and updates.

Members can now access the latest issue of Current here —happy reading!

Interested in submitting an article to Current? Guidelines for submissions are available here >

Not a member yet? Join NMEA and receive access to Current, as well as all our other member benefits, here >

Tags:  current 

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