Earth to Sky Academy

The Earth to Sky Academy is intended for experienced informal educators and climate communication leaders who have a strong commitment to the ETS partnership and to furthering climate literacy within their respective regions.

The purpose is to train Regional Leaders who will conduct regional Earth to Sky courses and nurture their regional community of practice of climate communicators. It is a tuition-free 5-day course held at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center. The content is based on over 15 years of experience and extensive evaluation of the ETS model.

Team Alaska presents a slide on their region's plans at ETS Academy class of 2019Emma Johnson (Team Coastal Alaska) reports out to ETS Academy class of 2019 her team's plans for their region.

Participants apply as teams of 3–5 individuals who have self-selected the geographic extent and primary audience for their region. Each team reflects a breadth of expertise drawn from a variety of agencies and organizations.

Teams are selected based upon an assessment of their ability and commitment to:

  • Catalyze, nurture, and sustain their regional community of practice of climate science communicators
  • Develop and conduct effective ETS-style professional development events in their region
  • Participate in the ETS Regional Leaders Network to further the mission of ETS.

Academy topics include:

  • Basic principles of effective adult education methodology
  • Best practices in professional development reflected in the Earth to Sky training methodology
  • Foundational climate science, including an introduction to Earth System Science as a contextual framework for climate science.
  • Tips on how to access NASA science, educational content, and expertise.

Dr. Claire Parkinson describing visualizations of changes in arctic ice depicted on Goddard's hyperwallDr. Claire Parkinson describes some of her research on our planet's changing ice to ETS Academy class of 2019 using Goddard Scientific Visualization Studio imagery projected on the hyperwall.

The collegial workshop environment offers many opportunities to engage with NASA scientists and communication specialists.

Participants receive an ETS Regional Course Guidebook that outlines methodology and provides lesson plans, templates, and a detailed planning timeline for running an ETS style course. Work time is provided for teams to confer with each other and ETS leadership as they begin developing plans for their own courses and nurturing their regional community of practice. The course is followed by ongoing professional development, mentoring and other support for the Regional Leadership Teams.

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