Geographic ConnectionCGAlog02012

News of the California Geographic Alliance

December 2015- Vol 7, Issue 10
In This Issue
Opportunities for 2016
Summer Options
Write for Us!
GEEO for Travel
Resources for the classroom
CCSS Learning Modules
AP GiS&T course proposal
ArcGIS Online FREE for Schools
Email and Phone
Quick Links
Kick Start Your New Year with Teacher and Student Opportunities
California Coastal Art & Poetry Contest
California students in kindergarten through 12th grade are invited to submit artwork or poetry with a California coastal or marine theme to the Coastal Commission's annual Coastal Art & Poetry Contest. Entries must be postmarked by January 30, 2016. For rules and entry form, the contest flyer, and helpful links for teachers and students,visit or .
Up to ten winners will be selected to win $100 gift certificates to an art supply store (for artists) or book store (for poets). Each winner's sponsoring teacher will receive a $50 gift certificate for educational supplies. Students may have their work featured on Coastal Commission web pages and materials, and winning entries will be exhibited throughout the state.

Become a Grosvenor Teacher Fellow 2016

Have you dreamed of traveling to the Galapagos or the Arctic? Four California teachers were selected as Grosvenor Scholars in 2015 and had the opportunity to do just that. Photographs from Michael Presser, a Rancho Verde High School teacher, were recently featured on the National Geographic Education blog. Read the post here.  APPLICATIONS CLOSE JANUARY 3, 2016! 

Other Opportunities for 2016
These opportunities are provided for your information. These programs are not affiliated with the California Geographic Alliance.

Teachers for Global Classrooms: If you are a full-time K-12 teacher with 5 years or more of experience (and that means 5 years at the END of this school year!), who is a U.S. citizen/resident, and who wants to spend 2-3 weeks abroad, check out this program!!! You do an online course and then you get to travel to a developing country of your choice during the spring or summer (2017). It's a great program, run by the U.S. State Department, and you become a State Department alumnus afterwards! For more information, go to: 

Application deadline: March 17 

Dar Al Islam Institute, New Mexico: Do you want to learn more about Islam so that you can teach about it accurately? The Dar Al Islam program, held in rural Abiquiu, New Mexico, is in its 27th year. And it's funded. The institute will take place from July 10-23. Preference is given to those who apply before March 1. For more information and an application, go to:  

Choices Summer Institute: Are you a secondary teacher with 3 years or more experience? Choices - a program of Brown University in Rhode Island - has great lesson plans/curriculum materials, and they also have a summer institute. This year's topic: "Global Refugees: Human Rights, Responsibilities, and Responses." The institute, from July 11-15, is $195 for accepted participants, but you have to pay your transportation out there and housing (arranged at a low cost). Some of the meals are covered. For more information, go to:       

Application Deadline: March 1

The National Endowment for the Humanities offers FUNDED summer seminars and institutes for K-12 teachers - and pre-service teachers - in different locations and on different topics. 2016 topics include "Central Asia in World History," "Muslim Cultures through the Arts" and "The Immigrant Experience in California through Literature and Theater." There are many others as well. They provide a subsidy for housing/living expenses too. For more information and an application, go to:

Application Deadline: March 1    
 Write for the Geographic Connection
Do you have something you'd like to share about geography or geography education with the more than 3,000 readers of the Geographic Connection?

The CGA pays $250 to authors of feature articles.  Those interested should send a brief description of their article idea and a proposed submission date to  

Help us share geography related products with our readers by writing a book/website/product review! CGA can offer $50 for any product review that we use. Email a brief description of the items you would like to review along with a proposed submission date to

Need help deciding where to start with your review? CGA Director, Tom Herman has several books, such as the one pictured here, available for review. Contact him at the email address above to sign up to do a review on one of the books in his collection.

GEEO for Teacher Travel
airplace-takeoff-sunset.jpg Travel the world, earn professional development credit, and bring global understanding into your classroom! 
Founded in 2007, Global Exploration for Educators Organization (GEEO) is a 501c3 non-profit organization that has sent over 1300 teachers abroad on adventurous travel programs.  With GEEO educators can earn professional development credits while seeing the world. GEEO's trips are 7 to 21 days in length and are designed and discounted to be interesting and affordable for teachers. In addition to amazing tour leaders, many of the programs are accompanied  b y university faculty that are experts on the destination. GEEO also provides teachers educational materials and the structure to help them bring their experiences into the classroom. The trips are open to all nationalities of K-12 and university educators, administrators, retired educators, as well as educators' guests.

GEEO is offering the following travel programs for 2016: Bali/Lombok, Bangkok to Hanoi, China, Costa Rica, Eastern Europe, The Galapagos Islands, Greece, Iceland, India/Nepal, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Morocco, Myanmar (Burma), Peruvian Amazon, Peruvian Andes, Portugal/Spain, Heart of the Silk Road, Southern Africa, Sri Lanka, Turkey, Vietnam/Cambodia, Western Balkans, Peru (Winter Break), Southern India (Winter Break), Israel (Spring Break), Moorish Spain (Spring Break), and Morocco (Spring Break). From now untilOctober 1st nearly all of the programs are 5% off the regular already discounted price as part of GEEO's early booking sale. T

he registration deadline is June 1st, but space is limited and many programs will be full well before the deadline. 

Detailed information about each trip, including itineraries, costs, travel dates, and more can be found at GEEO can be reached 7 days a week, toll-free at 1-877-600-0105 between 9 AM-9 PM EST.
Resources for the classroom


Current Context: Cuba and the U.S.

      Check out the latest from CHSSP that addresses the changes in the relationship between Cuba and the U.S. Get the documents and links here.


Current Context: Ukraine Conflict

      A recent CHSSP Current Context is on the Ukraine Conflict.  The pdf contains articles, timelines, maps, and teaching suggestions.  


Current Context: California Drought
      Check out CHSSP's newest free teaching resource, Current Context: California Droughtwhich includes a short background article, a map, a timeline of important events, and links to more great resources.


Current Context: Boko Haram/Nigeria

        Are you looking for a resource that helps you put current events in their historical context for your students? Check out their newest free teaching resource,  Current Context which includes a short background article, a map, a timeline of important events, and links to more great resources.  Their recent edition, Boko Haram/Nigeria, is ready for download here .  Check back for more resources in this occasional series, and let them  know what topics you'd like covered in future installments!
New CCSS Professional Learning Module Available from the CDE
The CDE is pleased to announce the release of the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) English/Language Arts (ELA): Content Literacy in History/Social Studies, Grades Six through Twelve, online professional learning module.

This module provides secondary history/social studies teachers with resources to implement the CA CCSS for ELA/Literacy to deepen students' understanding of historical/social studies content, improve critical thinking, and develop literacy. The module contains information, strategies, lessons, videos, and resources to aid teachers in integrating reading and other literacy activities into history/social studies instruction to support all students' success.

Additional professional learning modules will be available in the coming months. For more information, please visit the CDE CCSS Professional Learning Modules for Educators Web page.
AAG Seeks Proposal Authors for potential AP GiS&T course
This is an exciting opportunity on many levels. For the complete article, click here.

The Geography Education National Implementation Project (GENIP) has received a request from The College Board for a proposal to develop a new Advanced Placement course in Geographic Information Science and Technology (GIS&T). The AAG will lead a course proposal development team on behalf of GENIP.
ArcGIS Online Organization available now
ESRI announced last summer that ArcGIS Online Organization subscriptions will be available at NO COST to schools around the country. This subscription level service offers much more than the basic public account, including " more control of sharing, access to more data, engaging much more powerful analyses, supporting apps like Collector or Explorer, integrating with ArcMap and Microsoft Office, enabling login to Community Analyst, and lots more."

For more information and to get the latest materials, including the ArcGIS Online Skillbuilder, visit
CGA Email Address and Phone Number
Contact us via email at

Need to get in touch with us by phone?

General Contact Information
CGA Director:
Thomas Herman
Communications Coordinator
Natalie Wojinski