CO – GSA125, Teaching Controversies Workshop

Leave a comment

October 26, 2013 by Dr. G

My first full day in Denver, Colorado, started with a simple tweet:

Today is a day of pre-conference workshops and fieldtrips before the official start of the Geological Society of America’s Annual Meeting. And this year’s meeting is celebrating the 125th anniversary of GSA – a special occasion, to be sure!  Many activities during the conference are centered around the theme of how the discipline has changed over the years, and the hashtag to following on social media is #GSA125.  GSA fully supports conference attendees tweeting and blogging their experiences – they even have a Twitter roll and blog roll set up so everyone can monitor the conference activities online.

My conference name badge, complete with a colorful lanyard.

My conference name badge, complete with a colorful lanyard.

But today was a full-day workshop for me.  I was a co-organizer and instructor for Teaching Controversial Issues I & II.  Designed for K-16 Earth Science educators, we split the workshop into two sessions, with the morning session examining climate change and energy, and the afternoon session exploring evolution of life and Earth.  Myself and six other presenters split the duties of presenting science content and strategies for teaching the content in the classroom.  We also had some very engaging discussions with our workshop participants on how to address such topics as growing energy demands, the linkages between dinosaurs and birds, and the importance of students understanding (or at least working towards and understanding of) geologic time.

I presented in the afternoon on the topics of de-extinction and rewilding.  Students that have taken the courses Evolution and Life (historical geology) and Dinosaurs Extinctions with me know that these are current and exciting topics I like to bring in to the classroom.  And with the huge media push earlier this year from the March 2013 TEDxDeExtinction event to the April 2013 National Geographic issue, there is much information online to pull from and to direct students towards.  Several people after the workshop thanked me for presenting on this topic, as they did not know much or was not even aware of the work being done on trying to bring extinct animals back from extinction – and yes, it has already happened.  It wasn’t a woolly mammoth that came back to life, but the Pyrenean ibex was cloned from frozen tissue.  Unfortunately, the animal did not live long after it was born, but this topic, of bringing extinct animals back to life is a very interdisciplinary topic that makes for a rich classroom discussion that goes beyond the science – it is not just “can we” bring extinct animals back to life, but “should we.”

Tomorrow begins the marathon days of attending oral presentations, poster sessions, and special functions and meetings.  What am I looking forward to the most?  – reconnecting with my geology friends and colleagues from across the country, and learning some new and interesting geology and approaches to teaching that geology to bring back to my classroom.  Watch out, students – good geology times lie ahead!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.


Follow me on Instagram

I'm thrilled to be exhibiting my quilts and crocheted pieces at @jagardens, starting this weekend! It will be the first time my Drawing Down Towards Climate Solutions mini-quilts, plus my Stitching Hope for the Louisiana quilts, PLUS my crocheted temperature data will all be on display at once. For those in southeastern PA, I hope you are able to come out sometime before January 8 to stroll the beautiful arboretum and stop by the art gallery to view these pieces. Admission to the arboretum and gallery is free!
Finished this fun data visualization/quilt top that shares the daily Sky Cover measurements from @joides_resolution #EXP390. As sky cover is recorded in units zero to eight, I chose eight different batik fabrics to represent the scale (the deepest blue batik for the blue sky, and the darkest/black batik for when the sky was completely clouded over, and all shades of blue/grey in-between). As the expedition officially was April 7 thru June 7, 2022, there are 62 pieces of data/batik strips. The background fabric is filled with golden stars for the sky, and the bright gold border is my nod to our port city, where the fabric was purchased.
Thank you @SciHistoryOrg for hosting Start Talking Science 2022 - so great to be able to present alongside other Philly scientists about the work we do to a non-STEM audience of all ages! And a great opportunity to share the mission and how we do science at sea on @theJR #EXP390 #EXP393
Back at @pennlivearts this evening to hear the @blindboysofalabama - so incredible, so inspirational! The new songs were great, but my all-time favorite will always be Amazing Grace sung to The House of the Rising Sun (check it out if you have never heard this innovative mashup).
🎼 I love live New Orleans jazz - and tonight, I didn’t have to go to New Orleans, as the jazz came to me! 🎶 Such a fun concert by @newbreed_brassband. 🎵 The best part - the sousaphone player’s high school band teacher was there & brought his trumpet on stage and joined them for a few songs. 🎺 After the first song, he said he was getting emotional, as he was so proud of the group. I get it, teacher, I’m there with you.
%d bloggers like this: