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Teachers in Udaipur, India, Receive Field-Based GLOBE Training

The Indian Environmental Society, along with the support of the Public Affair Section of American Embassy in New Delhi, organized a GLOBE Teacher Training Workshop in Udaipur, Rajasthan, India. Teachers from various schools across the state of Rajasthan participated in this program from 27-30 January 2011. Mr. R. Mehta, GLOBE India Country Coordinator, Dr. Desh Bandhu, Director of the Asia-Pacific GLOBE Regional Help Desk Office, Dr. R. K. Garg, Vice President of the Indian Environmental Society, and GLOBE Master Trainer Dr. Avinash Tiwari, trained teachers in Atmosphere, Hydrology, Land Cover, and Soil Protocols. Mr. Abhaya Kumar Tripathy, from the Asia-Pacific GLOBE Regional Help Desk Office, and Dr. (Mrs.) Annu Mathur, from MGD Girls School of Jaipur, Rajasthan, strengthened the event as the assistant trainers for the Atmosphere Protocols. Highlights of the event are detailed below:

Day 1

The first day began with an introduction by Dr. Bandhu, providing workshop objectives and information about the GLOBE Program. A detailed PowerPoint presentation was also delivered, highlighting the various GLOBE Protocols. Soon after the introductory session, Dr. Garg made a presentation on the Geographical Positioning System (GPS) and methodology for operating the GPS receiver. Participants were able to practice operating GPS receivers immediately after receiving a theoretical overview and operational instructions. In the field, all participants were divided into 4 different study groups led by Dr. Avinash Tiwari, Dr. R. K. Garg, Dr. (Mrs.) Annu Mathur, and Mr. Abhaya Kumar Tripathy. "It was very encouraging to observe the excitement they expressed while doing the activity on their own. All participants recorded 15 observations and took the average of all 15 to obtain the geographical location of their study site," stated Dr. Bandhu who presented information on Atmosphere Protocols, outlining Cloud and contrail observation using GLOBE cloud charts, and providing hands-on instruction on how to measure Maximum/Minimum/Current Air Temperature, and Precipitation. The training event incorporated open discussions to promote productive conversation and collaboration among the trainers and trainees.

Following the atmospheric field activities, Dr. Tiwari delivered a lecture on the importance of engaging in soil investigations and noting the contribution of data gathered using GLOBE's Soil Protocols, highlighting Soil Characterization and Soil Temperature. Dr. Tiwari demonstrated the soil study process, including the profile, characterization, and soil temperature measurement and each participant learned how to use a soil augur, used to obtain soil samples, and used the soil chart to analyze soil qualities.

Day 2

On the second day, Mrs. Lydia Barraza and Mr. Ramesh Jain from the Public Affair Section of the American Embassy, New Delhi, joined the workshop. The day began with a welcome address by Dr. Bandhu to all participants, trainers, and guests from the American Embassy. Mrs. Barraza encouraged all participants to ask as many questions as possible to ensure that theoretical and practical sessions very strongly linked and interactive. At the end of the session, Mr. Ramesh Jain delivered a closing message thanking all participants for their participation and making special note of the expertise represented by the trainers and participants alike.

Mr. Mehta provided a technical session on Land Cover study, including canopy cover, ground vegetation cover, tree height measurement, and interpreting the color of satellite images. Participants and trainers then went to a nearby forest where Mr. Mehta demonstrated how to measure a 30m X 30m study area to take various GLOBE biometry measurements. Participants were divided into four different groups, each led by a trainer, and also practiced using the MUC Field Guide.

Day 3

GLOBE Hydrology was covered during the third day of the event. Dr. Garg explained the GLOBE-based scientific methodologies for monitoring water qualities including taking Water Temperature, pH, and Water Transparency measurements. Participants were then taken to their Hydrology study site for the day, Fateh Sagar Lake. After recording the geographic location of the site, Dr. Garg and Dr. Tiwari demonstrated methods for monitoring the water quality while Mr. Tripathy and Dr. Mathur assisted the participants in conducting the experiments on their own. As they worked, participants discussed the cause of variations in the results for the same parameters at different locations. Many research questions were formulated during the day.

Day 4

The final day of the workshop began with a lecture by Dr. Bandhu about the Phenology of plants. After the lecture, participants moved into the field and observed plants, leaves, buds and flowers. After being trained on the four basic Phenology Protocols, Dr. Tiwari led participants through the steps of data entry and all participants and trainers practiced entering their data at a local cyber café.Two participants were assigned to each computer, and Dr. Tiwari and Mr. Tripathy guided the participants in accomplishing their activities successfully. Following the data entry training, Dr. Bandhu summarized all of the activities carried out during the workshop. The feedback from each participant was collected and discussed. Following this discussion, Ms. Barraza from the Public Affair Section of American Embassy joined the concluding session, and distributed a certificate to each participant.

Congratulations to the 20 newly trained GLOBE Teachers in India who join a large network of 1,347 teachers in the country. India joined the GLOBE Program on 25 August 2000 and has conducted 52 teacher training workshops since that time. In addition, the Asia-Pacific Regional Help Desk Office has been located in India since January 2009, providing help desk services to 15 countries in the region including Australia, Bangladesh, Fiji, Japan, South Korea, the Maldives, the Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Mongolia, Nepal, New Zealand, Palau, the Philippines, Sri Lanka and Thailand.

Read about what GLOBE Students are doing in India:

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15 April 2011