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Middle and High School Teachers and Students

The NES-LTER Schoolyard program engages Middle (MS) and High School (HS) teachers and students with our research and data, linking ecosystem questions to the core curriculum and science practices in the classroom. Led by education specialist, Annette Brickley, the Schoolyard currently focuses on curricula supporting student data literacy-- analyzing and interpreting data, from beginner to advanced. The Data Jam model, highlighted in NSTA Journal The Science Teacher (Sep. 2018), is like a science fair, except the students aren't collecting the data, but using our data. They interpret what they see and communicate their data story creatively and artistically. 

In school year 2020-21, we offered outreach webinars, and our third student Data Jam competition. Current and past student winners can be found on the Data Jam site, Winners Ring. Teachers and advisors who support student participation in the Data Jam are eligible to participate in our Research Experience for Teachers (RET) program which includes going to sea with our team during summer and/or winter transect cruises.

Next Launch

To continue our support to teachers and students with data literacy skills, we are offering periodic online workshops in series, entitled "Singing & Dancing with Data".  Each workshop provides teachers with options to help scaffold data analysis and interpretation activities. Workshop invitations have reached a broad audience across the US as well as Puerto Rico and Mauritania! Workshops are also offered at annual conferences such as the Massachusetts Marine Educators annual meeting in May and the National Marine Educators Association in July.

RET DWelty operating winch

drweltyfhs  While controlling the winch to deploy the Stingray with the ISIIS shadow graph plankton imaging system, Research Experience for Teachers, Aug 2019. 

Related Information

"They put in a significant amount of work into their Scratch animation, learned to do reports, and had tons of fun along the way! They have many insider jokes about data jam and about lobsters!  Thank you again for encouraging educators and students!"  P. Naravane, Planet Robotics after-school coach, Foxborough Charter MS

How to be a part of our schoolyard--

  • To join our private mailing list, hear about connected teaching/learning opportunities, and be a part of the NES-LTER Schoolyard, please sign up here. (your contact information will remain private)
  • To be eligible for an RET experience, engage in our webinars and Schoolyard opportunities, including Data Jam.

Graduate student Jacob Strock tending a line during a CTD/rosette deployment on Endeavor cruise EN608. (Photo by E. Taylor Crockford)

Undergraduate and Graduate Students

Undergraduate and graduate students involved in NES-LTER research gain valuable training not only in field, lab, analytical, and data management skills, but also in collaborating in a multi-investigator/multi-disciplinary project. We offer summer Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REUs) at WHOI, and there are additional opportunities for undergraduate students through the University of Rhode Island (URI) and Wellesley College. Also, NES-LTER hosted a fellow for the Environmental Data Initiative (EDI) 2019 Summer Fellowship Program. See our presentation highlighting NES-LTER undergraduate research: Also, NES-LTER participated in the Project EDDIE Module Development Workshop to develop classroom activities for undergraduate students using large long-term and high-frequency datasets.


Undergraduate student Elizabeth Lambert donning an immersion suit during a safety drill on Endeavor cruise EN608, assisted by postdoctoral researcher Francoise Morison. Image credit Stace Beaulieu, WHOI

Listen » undergraduate student Elizabeth Lambert describing the experience of a first research cruise.

Listen » to more students sharing about experiences on their first research cruise.

Audio credits Stace Beaulieu, WHOI.

Science on a Sphere

An important component of our education/public outreach efforts will be creating new data sets and live programs for NOAA's Science On a Sphere® (SOS). The SOS is a room-sized, digital globe often on display in its own auditorium for docent-led presentations of stories incorporating geo-referenced datasets. The SOS is used at over 165 science centers in more than 25 countries around the world.

(Image credit Will von Dauster/NOAA.)