Four Teacher at Sea Alumni Present Posters at the International Teacher Scientist Partnership Conference in Boston

Ellen O’Donnell (TAS 2012), Laura Rodriguez (TAS 2010), Caroline Singler (TAS 2010), and Lisa Hjelm (TAS 2008) presented posters about their Teacher at Sea experience and their subsequent work at the International Teacher Scientist Partnership (ITSP) conference in Boston, MA on Friday, February 15, 2013. The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) annual conference also began on February 15 and concluded on Sunday, February 17. AAAS participants were invited to attend the ITSP conference poster session. 
Ellen O’Donnell and Laura Rodriguez are both TAS alumni, but they also happen to be sisters! Their poster was titled “Sisters at Sea” and explained how in the spring of 2012 Ms. Rodriguez’s students in Connecticut collaborated with Ms. O’Donnell’s students in New Hampshire to create a wiki in order to research a variety of ocean topics. Ms. Rodriguez and Ms. O’Donnell’s students followed Ms. O’Donnell while she was out at sea in May of 2012 and when she returned, they all skyped and created a wiki. The sisters plan to continue working together to investigate water quality in their states. 
Caroline Singler highlighted her summer in the Arctic and explained that since her cruise she shares her experiences with her students in earth science, physical science and aquatic biology classes. Her earth science students use real data to map and evaluate temperature and salinity patterns in the Arctic Ocean and to learn about seafloor features. Ms. Singler stated that she gained an appreciation for what it takes to do research at sea and that she is committed to continuing to learn and experience new things so that she can model what it is like to be a lifetime learner for her students. 
Lisa Hjelm shared information about student research projects involving visualizations that were the outcome of two teacher research experiences: NOAA Teacher at Sea experience on a hydrographic survey in the Gulf of Alaska and Enduring Resources for Earth Sciences Education (ERESE) teacher research experience on plate tectonics. She highlighted a lesson she created titled, “Fire and Ice”, that challenges students to identify and compare volcanic and glacial features on land and the seafloor.

The ITSP Conference offered an opportunity for partnership specialists from around the world to learn from one another about program structures and evaluation; to develop a professional community and potential collaborations; and, critically, to learn from teachers and scientists involved in these programs. 

Four women stand in front of a NOAA Teacher at Sea sign.
Left to right: Laura Rodriguez, Ellen O'Donnell, Lisa Hjelm and Caroline Singler