WeatherBlur | STORMS | Energy 4 ME | CREST
Building on the success of STORMS, WeatherBlur was developed to explore weather, climate, storms, geomorphology, oceanography, and more. Using a participatory approach with a hands-on advisory board of teachers, fishermen, scientists, and educational researchers from around the country, an online platform was developed in 2012–2013 and implemented in the 2013–2014 school year in four Maine and two Sitka, Alaska schools.
STORMS (Students and Teachers Observing and Recording Meteorological Systems) was a one-year pilot project focused on working with teachers to develop methods and curriculum about weather, storms, and climate using locally focused, action-oriented activities such as collecting weather data, using GPS/GIS to document storm impacts, and researching how weather and storms impact natural resource-based communities. Teachers gained experience in using meteorological instruments, GIS equipment, and video-equipment for conducting ethnographic interviews, and methods for teaching these skills to their students.
Energy 4 ME
Energy for ME was an energy education program of the Island Institute, involving ten island and coastal communities. Students in grades 6-12 – and their families – learned how to better understand their communities' energy-consumption habits, as well as how to develop effective strategies to increase energy efficiency. To do so, they used eMonitor energy meters to measure electricity usage at several different access points, including homes, schools and public buildings.
2006 - 2011
CREST (Community for Rural Education Stewardship and Technology) was a project based on a five-year, $2 million grant to the Island Institute from the National Science Foundation (NSF). In addition to the Island Institute, the project involved 16 island and coastal high schools and middle schools, and a number of academic institutions. CREST’s goal was to provide the tools for students and teachers to create place-based learning experiences that use technology to answer community resource stewardship questions. The core concepts of the CREST model methodology were to incorporate 1) Place-based Education, 2) Integrated technologies (GIS, Web Design, and Digital Storytelling), and 3)Sustainable Learning Communities/ Non-Hierarchial Learning to successfully implement STEM programming in rural school settings. CREST events included professional-development opportunities for teachers, technology trainings for students and teachers, CREST career events for students, college campus visits, and summer training institutes.