STEM Professionals' Blog


The GLOBE International STEM professionals Network (GISN) Blog is an online collaborative effort where scientists associated with GLOBE post their thoughts, comments, and philosophies about a variety of science topics.

GLOBE strongly encourages positive and productive discussions to further advance the scientific understanding of all involved with The GLOBE Program.




The GLOBE Clouds team got to celebrate World Meteorological Day with the Secretary-General of the World Meteorological Organization, Dr. Petteri Taalas through a Facebook live filmed live from NASA Langley Research Center in Hampton, VA.    Join the celebration by watching the recorded Facebook live below.     View event on Facebook at - https://www.facebook.com/nasaearth/videos/10156418942207139/


Posted in: Curriculum: Education Research Science and Math STEM Event Topics: Other GLOBE Science Topics: Backyard Science General Science Primary Audience: Alumni Country Coordinators Partners Scientists Students Teachers Trainers

Bill Smith, left, along with Kris Bedka. The NASA GLOBE Clouds team is excited to share with you this recent news article about two NASA scientists that help match your observations with satellite data - Bill Smith and Kris Bedka. They, along with Louis Nguyen lead SatCORPS, at team at NASA Langley Research Center that use expertise in clouds to make better weather predictions.  Read more about their work at  https://www.nasa.gov/feature/langley/how-cloud-data-is-improving-weather-forecasts    


Posted in: Curriculum: Science and Math Technology STEM Event Topics: Other GLOBE Science Topics: Climate General Science GLOBE Protocols Earth as a System Scientist Skills Investigation Areas: Atmosphere Primary Audience: Alumni Country Coordinators Partners Scientists Students Teachers Trainers

We are excited to have such a response to the NASA GLOBE Clouds: Spring Cloud Observations Data Challenge .  Remember, top observers will be congratulated by a NASA scientist! Click here to learn more about the challenge.  Are you wondering about the clouds you are reporting and the type of weather you might experience in your area? Here is a guide to how cloud types are related to weather!  The information below was taken from the NOAA's SciJinks webpage -  https://scijinks.gov/clouds/   


Posted in: Curriculum: Education Research Science and Math STEM Event Topics: Competitions GLOBE Science Topics: Backyard Science General Science GLOBE Protocols Scientist Skills Learning Activities: Atmosphere and Climate News Topics: Competitions Primary Audience: Alumni Country Coordinators Partners Scientists Students Teachers Trainers

Today we start a series of posts devoted to providing information, tips, tricks and answers to frequently asked questions by Calitoo users! So, how do you measure Aerosol Optical Thickness (AOT) with a Calitoo? First and foremost: NEVER look directly at the sun! And… ONLY take measurements when the sun is not obstructed by clouds. TIP: Use your hand(s) to cover the sun; if you see any clouds on either side of your hand(s), do NOT take any measurements. Wait until the sun is not obstructed by clouds. Now, the Calitoo sun photometer measures AOT values at 465 nm, 540...


Posted in: Curriculum: Education Research Science and Math STEM Event Topics: Campaigns and Projects (IOPs, etc) Science Symposia and Fairs GLOBE Science Topics: General Science GLOBE Protocols GLOBE Working Groups: Science Working Group Investigation Areas: Atmosphere » Aerosols News Topics: Virtual Science Fair Primary Audience: Partners Students Teachers

The NASA GLOBE Clouds team is excited to highlight Mr. Gary Popiolkowski, a middle school science teacher at Chartiers-Houston Jr./Sr. High School in Houston, PA, USA. Mr. Popiolkowski has been teaching for 44 years and has been a GLOBE teacher since 1995. He has had his students doing cloud observations for the past 18 years, submitting over 15,000 observations! He has also been doing virtual connections with Patumwan Demonstration School in Thailand each year for the past four years. We ask Mr. Popiolkowski how he does it! Here is what he shared: Each period of the day the...


Posted in: Curriculum: Science and Math STEM Event Topics: Other GLOBE Science Topics: General Science GLOBE Protocols Scientist Skills Investigation Areas: Atmosphere » Clouds Atmosphere » Surface Temperature Primary Audience: Alumni Country Coordinators Partners Scientists Students Teachers Trainers

A fourth grade student from Public School 122 (Queens, NY), recently visited NASA Langley for a week. During his visit, he studied the GLOBE Aerosol Protocol. He went outside the Atmospheric Sciences building and collected aerosol data using a Calitoo sun photometer, which measures Aerosol Optical Thickness (AOT) at three wavelengths: 465nm (blue), 540nm (green) and 619nm (red). After downloading the data measured with the Calitoo to his laptop, the student learned how to access AERONET data. The AERONET ( AE rosol RO botic NET work) project is a federation of ground-based remote...


Posted in: Curriculum: Education Research Science and Math STEM Event Topics: Campaigns and Projects (IOPs, etc) Science Symposia and Fairs GLOBE Science Topics: General Science GLOBE Protocols GLOBE Working Groups: Science Working Group Investigation Areas: Atmosphere Atmosphere » Aerosols News Topics: Virtual Science Fair Primary Audience: Partners Students Teachers

The NASA GLOBE Clouds team recently presented a webinar the details of how your cloud observations are matched to satellite data. The webinar, recording found below, also focuses on the importance and quality of the observations, ways that the data can be used by scientists, and current work being done by the team at NASA Langley Research Center in Hampton, VA.  The webinar also highlights newly processed data from the temperature and cloud observations reported for the Great North American Solar Eclipse on August 21, 2017.      See how your data...


Posted in: Curriculum: Education Research Science and Math Technology STEM Event Topics: Campaigns and Projects (IOPs, etc) GLOBE Science Topics: Backyard Science General Science GLOBE Protocols Earth System Science Scientist Skills Investigation Areas: Atmosphere » Clouds News Topics: Video Primary Audience: Country Coordinators Partners Scientists Teachers Trainers

This past week was a very exciting one for the Science Education Team at NASA Langley Research Center! Four members visited one of the schools participating in the GLOBE Air Quality Student Research Campaign: Our Lady of Mount Carmel School, in Newport News, VA., where twenty middle school students, led by their science teacher Ms. Angie Rizzi, presented their team research projects and posters about aerosols. After students started taking aerosol measurements and once they had selected their research project questions, Dr. Pippin, -lead scientist for the GLOBE Air Quality Student...


Posted in: Curriculum: Education Research Science and Math STEM Event Topics: Campaigns and Projects (IOPs, etc) Science Symposia and Fairs GLOBE Science Topics: General Science GLOBE Protocols GLOBE Working Groups: Science Working Group Investigation Areas: Atmosphere » Aerosols News Topics: Virtual Science Fair Primary Audience: Partners Students Teachers

Mr. Jeff Bouwman The NASA GLOBE Clouds team is excited to highlight Mr. Jeff Bouwman, a 6th and 7th grade teacher at  Shumate Middle School  ( Gibraltar School District ) in Gibraltar, MI. Mr. Bouwman was one of the top 10 GLOBE Cloud observers for 2017 and we are very excited for the research his students are doing with the data.    We invite you to read his most recent post -   "It's Cool to Have Your Head in the Clouds" - and read the research his students are doing with 2-years of cloud observations!    If you would...


Posted in: Curriculum: Education Research Science and Math Technology STEM Event Topics: Science Symposia and Fairs GLOBE Science Topics: Backyard Science General Science GLOBE Protocols Scientist Skills Investigation Areas: Atmosphere Atmosphere » Clouds Learning Activities: Atmosphere and Climate News Topics: Competitions Virtual Science Fair Primary Audience: Scientists Students Teachers Trainers Teacher's Guide: Grade Level Investigation Area Documents

The 2017-18 GLOBE U.S. Air Quality Student Research Campaign is well underway in the United States! There are 34 school participating with more joining as the weeks go by: Broadalbin Perth High School (Alicia Dobyns) Cassadaga Middle School (Sandi Askin) Crestwood High School (Diana Johns) * Elizabeth City Middle School (Wanda Hathaway) Fredonia Middle School (Amy Lauer) Hamburg High School (Kaci Nowadly) Kipp Intrepid Prep School (Robert Bujosa) Life Academy (Sarah Pipping) * Main Street Intermediate School (Marcy Burns) Met Sacramento High School...


Posted in: Curriculum: Education Research Science and Math STEM Event Topics: Campaigns and Projects (IOPs, etc) Science Symposia and Fairs GLOBE Science Topics: General Science GLOBE Protocols GLOBE Working Groups: Science Working Group Investigation Areas: Atmosphere » Aerosols News Topics: Virtual Science Fair Primary Audience: Partners Students Teachers

NASA GLOBE Clouds: Spring Cloud Observations Data Challenge Audience : Students and teachers all grade levels, informal educators, and the general public Dates : March 15, 2018 - April 15, 2018 The NASA GLOBE Clouds team at NASA Langley Research Center in Hampton, VA is excited to announce the NASA GLOBE Clouds: Spring Cloud Observations Data Challenge . Participants are invited to enter up to 10 cloud observations per day from March 15, 2018 to April 15, 2018 using the GLOBE Program’s data entry options or using GLOBE Observer app . GLOBE and...


Posted in: Curriculum: Education Research Science and Math Technology STEM Event Topics: Other Competitions GLOBE Science Topics: Backyard Science General Science GLOBE Protocols Scientist Skills Investigation Areas: Atmosphere Atmosphere » Clouds News Topics: Competitions Primary Audience: Alumni Country Coordinators Partners Students Teachers Trainers Teacher's Guide: Grade Level

Friday, February 2nd is Groundhog Day and some of us will be waiting to see if Punxsutawney Phil saw a shadow or not! Punxsutawney Phil and other groundhogs have been predicting the arrival of Spring for many years and has intrigued us all.   NASA Education Specialist Dr. Anne Weiss NASA Education specialist at NASA Langley Research Center, Dr. Anne Weiss, was gathering cloud and temperature data while visiting her nephews (3rd, 5th, and 8th grade) when they got talking about Punxsutawney Phil. Her nephews were questioning if Punxsutawney Phil’s forecast would affect...


Posted in: Curriculum: Education Research Science and Math GLOBE Science Topics: Backyard Science General Science GLOBE Protocols Scientist Skills Investigation Areas: Atmosphere » Clouds Learning Activities: Atmosphere and Climate » Estimating Cloud Cover Primary Audience: Students Teachers Trainers

Learning science involves learning important concepts, conducting experiments to see first-hand how researchers discovered and confirmed some elements of science concepts, and learning how to think scientifically. With this complete approach to learning science, students are well-prepared to deal with the natural world around them and to make wise decisions when confronted with various choices. The ability to think scientifically is a valuable skill in almost all aspects of life and doing science teaches scientific habits of mind. Students can do science through research projects...


Posted in: Curriculum: Science and Math STEM GLOBE Science Topics: Backyard Science General Science Scientist Skills GLOBE Working Groups: Science Working Group Investigation Areas: Atmosphere Hydrosphere Earth As a System Pedosphere (Soil) Biosphere News Topics: Competitions Virtual Science Fair Primary Audience: Country Coordinators Partners Students Teachers

Gathering data Once you have determined what protocols to use for your project, you will need to develop a plan for gathering the data. It might consist of using automated data collection or making your own measurements. Also, it may include finding data taken by others, such as when you compare your observations with those of another GLOBE school. Automated Data Collection If you are using an automated data collection device or devices, verify that the data are being recorded properly before your official testing timeframe. You will want to monitor that the data are being...


Posted in: Curriculum: Education Research Science and Math Technology STEM Event Topics: Science Symposia and Fairs GLOBE Science Topics: Scientist Skills Meetings/Conferences GLOBE Working Groups: Science Working Group Education Working Group News Topics: Virtual Science Fair Primary Audience: Students Teachers Teacher's Guide: Grade Level » Middle: 6-8 Grade Level » Secondary: 9-12

Authors: Claudia Caro and Olawale Oluwafemi (Femi) Our participation in the International Virtual Science Symposium (IVSS) as judges has allowed us  to learn more about  the scientific experiences of students involved in the GLOBE Program. As members of the GLOBE Science Working Group with backgrounds in Geography and Biology, we would like to share our findings about the importance of the IVSS in the GLOBE community and give you some advice to empower your participation in this extraordinary yearly event. Why an International Virtual Science Symposium? Knowledge...


Posted in: Curriculum: Science and Math Technology STEM Event Topics: Science Symposia and Fairs GLOBE Working Groups: Science Working Group Education Working Group Primary Audience: Country Coordinators Students Teachers Teacher's Guide: Grade Level Grade Level » Middle: 6-8 Grade Level » Secondary: 9-12

When you start writing your GLOBE report for IVSS, it might be difficult because you might not sure where to start. We tend to start writing the Methods section first because it is something you did it yourselves and it should be relatively easy and straight forward to write. Second, you should write the Results section, do graphs, tables and texts (think of a best way to present your cool data to the whole world). Third, you should start writing the Introduction stating your hypotheses and predictions. The next step would be the Discussion section. It is funny to say but as scientists, we...


Posted in: Curriculum: Education Research Science and Math Technology STEM Event Topics: Science Symposia and Fairs Meetings GLOBE Science Topics: Scientist Skills Meetings/Conferences GLOBE Working Groups: Science Working Group Education Working Group News Topics: Virtual Science Fair Primary Audience: Students Teachers Teacher's Guide: Grade Level Grade Level » Middle: 6-8 Grade Level » Secondary: 9-12

As Earth science has a single uncontrolled object of study, the first rule is to take today’s data today. While ice and sediment cores and fossils can reveal past conditions, the observations that can be made right now cannot be replaced by ones taken later. This goes well with the Native American adage, “You can’t step in the same river twice.” The environment is constantly changing and doing so on a wide range of time and space scales. In a recent video post, Neil deGrasse Tyson said, “One of the great things about science is that it is an entire exercise finding what is true. You...


Posted in: Curriculum: Science and Math Event Topics: Campaigns and Projects (IOPs, etc) GLOBE Learning Expeditions Science Symposia and Fairs Field Campaigns: SMAP El Niño GLOBE Science Topics: Climate Climate Change General Science Earth as a System Earth System Science Investigation Areas: Earth As a System Primary Audience: Alumni Students Teachers

Bird Beaks and What they Eat Overview:  Students identify ideal beak shape for food. Age: Upper primary (4th and 5th graders) assisted 1st graders Materials: Bird beak/food handout Straws Dixie cups Juice Tweezers Bowls Wild grain rice Slotted spoons Cooked noodles (macaroni or similarly shaped) Chopsticks Gummy bears White rice Scissors Marshmallows (jumbo) Plan: Ask students why birds have beaks and what they are used for - allow time for discussion. Read a book about beaks to the group. I used ...


Posted in: Curriculum: Science and Math GLOBE Science Topics: General Science Learning Activities: Land Cover/Biology Primary Audience: Students Teachers

A version of this blog was originally posted on November 14, 2012 .  If you have been listening to the news or following along with weather and climate web pages, you have probably heard the term "ENSO."  ENSO, or El Niño-Southern Oscillation, is a quasi-periodic climate pattern that occurs in the tropical Pacific Ocean.  When the conditions change, the atmosphere responds in many different ways.  In certain locations, it is cloudier and it rains more, while in others it’s clear and dry.  Scientists are forecasting El Niño conditions to start...


Posted in: Curriculum: Science and Math GLOBE Science Topics: Climate Investigation Areas: Atmosphere

Blog originally posted on The GLOBE Scientists' Blog: http://blog.globe.gov/sciblog/2012/12/12/the-common-thread-between-science-and-art-creativity/ When you examine a seashell, a crystal, the skin of a snake or the wings of a butterfly, what do you think about?  Art?  Science? Or the obvious connection between the two?  At the fall meeting of the American Geophysical Union (AGU) in San Francisco, CA last week, thousands of scientists, including myself, found ourselves examining the intersection of science and art through a wide variety of...


Posted in: Curriculum: Language Culture and Arts Science and Math

This week we have a guest blogger, Dr. Dixon Butler. Dr. Butler was the GLOBE Chief Scientist from 1996-2003 and now works as a consultant to NASA. Students working on GLOBE Hydrology Protocols The general explanation of the scientific method focuses on comparing two situations that differ in only one clearly defined way. One case serves as the control while the other is the experiment. The results must be replicable as a check that the measurements were made correctly and that any other differences between the control and experiment are insignificant. This is an ideal,...


Posted in: Curriculum: Science and Math Field Campaigns: SCRC GLOBE Science Topics: General Science