General Public

The CZOs strive to educate the general public.

Study of the Critical Zone is a new and evolving realm of science - by necessity, the CZO education and outreach effort has focused on the Earth science community. Nonetheless, the CZOs strive to educate the general public, for example through our presence at the second U.S. Science and Technology Exposition in Washington, D.C. during April 2012. Our exhibit booth included a variety of pamphlets as well as hands-on activities: geologists demonstrated various processes of weathering and erosion, ecologists showed how to determine the leaf-area index of a forest, and hydrologists used on-line tools to show how land use change affects hydrologic characteristics of a landscape.

Eric Carpenter (CU-Boulder), education and outreach specialist for the Boulder Creek CZO, leads students through a hands-on learning exercise relating glaciation to erosion and sedimentation during the U.S. Science and Technology Expo in Washington, D.C. during April 2012.

Educational Resources (examples for general public)

  • Grades 6 - 14

    Mapping Earth systems

    All Disciplines

    Information & Dataset +

    Preview

    National

  • × Very colorful map of Bedrock Geology for the U.S.  Maps of very different characteristics in the landscape can reveal surprising connections.

    Grades 6 - 14

    Mapping Earth systems

    All Disciplines

    Information • Dataset • Activity

    View ten maps of the contiguous 48 states, each highlighting different geographic features. Viewing the maps collectively reveals connections among different Earth systems.

    Educational Objectives

    • Describe similarities in the geographic distribution of different characteristics of the landscape.
    • Speculate on relationships among these different characteristics.
    Visit this resource (pdf)

    See CZO listing


    NGSS Crosscutting Concepts: Patterns • Systems and System Models

    NGSS Science & Engineering Practices: Developing and Using Models

    NGSS Disciplinary Core Ideas: ESS2 - Earth’s Systems • ESS3 - Earth and Human Activity


    Audience: K-12 • General Public • Higher Education

    Observatory: National CZO

    Author: Don Haas (PRI)


  • Grades 3 - 16

    Shale Hills Tree Survey, Google Earth File

    Biology/Ecology +

    Virtual Fieldwork & Computer Activity  +

    Preview

    Cross-CZO

  • × Trees within the Shale Hills focus catchment have all been catalogued. Different colors show different species.

    Grades 3 - 16

    Shale Hills Tree Survey, Google Earth File

    Biology/Ecology • GIS/RemoteSensing • SoilScience/Pedology

    Virtual Fieldwork • Computer Activity  • Demo • Dataset

    This kmz file contains basic data on every large tree within the Shale Hills catchment, including species and Diameter at Breast Height (DBH). Explore the data and look for patterns of species distributions by clicking on and off different species. This file is included within the Shale Hills VFE.

    Educational Objectives

    The listed objectives are suggestive. Teachers may design activities using the dataset with their own objectives.

    • Describe how distribution of trees varies by species.
    • Speculate what factors determine species' affinity for particular placement within the Shale Hills catchment.
    • Design investigations to test hypotheses about species distribution.

    The survey can also serve as a model for surveying trees (or other elements) in your local environment.

    Visit this resource (other)

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    Audience: K-12 • General Public • Higher Education

    Observatory: National CZO • Shale Hills CZO

    Author: Don Haas, Sarah Sharkey


  • Grades 3 - 16

    Technical tools of real and virtual fieldwork

    All Disciplines

    Virtual Fieldwork & Activity +

    Preview

    National

  • × Screenshot of a webpage including a Google Street View spherical panorama of a highly instrumented tree at the Southern Sierra Critical Zone Observatory.

    Grades 3 - 16

    Technical tools of real and virtual fieldwork

    All Disciplines

    Virtual Fieldwork • Activity • Project

    See an annotated list of technical tools for creating Virtual Fieldwork Experiences about a site. Tools include smartphone apps for capturing imagery and other data as well as accessing information (ie geologic maps). Desktop and web-based software is also included, as is some hardware.

    Educational Objectives

    Users will both create and access media to explain why a site looks the way it does.

    Visit this resource

    See CZO listing


    Audience: K-12 • General Public • Higher Education • Research Community

    Observatory: National CZO

    Author: Don Haas (PRI)


  • Grades 6 - 14

    CZ Science Cafe Series

    All Disciplines +

    Video

    Preview

    Catalina-Jemez

  • × Jon Chorover (U of Arizona) presenting 'Introduction to the Critical Zone' during the 2015 Critical Zone Science Cafe Series.

    Grades 6 - 14

    CZ Science Cafe Series

    All Disciplines • SoilScience/Pedology • Biology/Molecular • Hydrology

    Video

    Watch fascinating, public lectures from four Catalina-Jemez CZO researchers. The 30-minute lectures are part of the Critical Zone Science Cafe Series from Fall 2015, in Tucson, AZ.

    Educational Objectives

    Viewers will be able to describe:

    • The concept of the CZ
    • The role of microbes in the CZ
    • The role of soil in the CZ
    • The role of water in the CZ
    Visit this resource

    See CZO listing


    Audience: K-12 • General Public

    Observatory: Catalina-Jemez CZO

    Author: Jon Chorover (U of Arizona), Craig Rasmussen (U of Arizona), Rachel Gallery (U of Arizona) and Tom Meixner (U of Arizona)


    Funding: The Catalina-Jemez Critical Zone Observatory in collaboration with the University of Arizona Flandrau Science Center & Planetarium.

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