Resources at NSDL and Hurricanes!
The first Web Seminar produced in collaboration with
the National Science Digital Library (NSDL) on the topic of Hurricanes was held
on Tuesday, May 16, 2006, from 6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern time. The presenters
were Susan Van Gundy, Director of Education and Outreach
at NSDL and Robert Payo, Education and Outreach Specialist
also from NSDL. The presentation focused on resources available at the NSDL and
hurricanes, how they form, how scientists study them, and how they predict their
The session started with a general overview of the NSTA Web Seminar tools and how
they can be used to facilitate interaction between the participants and the presenters.
Fifty-nine participants were present in addition to the presenters and the NSTA
staff. Participating educators represented the states of Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas,
California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Massachusetts,
Missouri, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South
Carolina, Texas, Virginia, and Wisconsin.
Susan Van Gundy started the presentation talking about the NSDL and the resources
available at the library. She shared reasons why teachers should use the digital
library over other search engines, for example, NSDL offers resources from trusted
providers, peer reviewed collections, variety of interfaces for discovery, context,
tools and services, and community. The featured digital library for this program
was DLESE. This acronym stands for Digital Library for Earth System Education. Mr.
Payo continued the presentation talking about the ingredients for storms such as
hurricanes. As he went through the list of ingredients, he shared tools available
in DLESE that educators can use with their students to learn about hurricanes. Payo
talked about air and water temperature, pressure, and Earth's rotation axis.
Van Gundy followed Payo talking about the different names hurricane-like storms
receive around the world, like typhoons, and cyclones, and did an activity where
a volunteer member of the audience plotted the path of a storm through the western
Caribbean given latitude and longitude coordinates. At the end of the presentation
participants learned about the tools of the forecaster and how using computer models
a nd simulations, as well as historical data, scientists make predictions for future
hurricane seasons. Throughout the presentation there were several opportunities
for the participants to interact with each other and with the presenters by answering
poll questions, chatting, stamping, and marking on the slides.
Here are some comments provided by the participants at the end of the Web Seminar:
"I learned a great deal about resources available as well as hurricanes. I enjoyed
the graphics and pictures. They make for a much more interesting learning environment
along with participation."
"I enjoyed the discussion of temperature and global wind patterns. It helps to show
how we can somewhat predict the coming season."
"Learning about the digital library system search engines was great. That they are
free is marvelous. I hope to learn how user friendly they are. The slides were incredible
and fantastic visual and interactive tools."
"I really enjoyed hearing the presentation instead of just reading information.
The questions that others asked were great. I learned where to look for valuable
information in interactives for my students."
Thanks to the participants and the presenters for the learning opportunity, the
interactions, and a job well done!
Web Seminar: Hurricanes - Resources
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