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Adapting to Student Citizen Science in the Time of COVID-19

Updated: Mar 29

Several YLACES grantees have adopted new approaches to maximize youth engagement in environmental citizen science during disruptions to in-person activity resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic.


By taking advantage of innovative distance learning practices offered by groups such as GLOBE, the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, iNaturalist and others, YLACES grantees are doing science in a safe, socially distanced manner.


For example, Roger Rose, an elementary science teacher in Alpena, Arkansas, has equipped five central locations with GLOBE weather stations. Students are responsible for taking daily measurements of precipitation, maximum and minimum air temperature, land surface temperature, barometric pressure, relative humidity, and other environmental variables.


The Alice Ferguson Foundation in Maryland is sharing microscopic images of macroinvertebrates over Zoom to allow students to observe samples collected at their site remotely as a group. Camp Discovery in Blytheville, SC, has been holding small group family gatherings for family units to make observations together in an informal setting. To engage its students living in an inner city, the McKinley STEMM Academy streams to students while taking GLOBE hydrosphere measurements at a local river; the data are used by students in their science investigations. Sci Starter has created a lending library of measurement equipment that students can borrow for use at their homes for a period of time.


In all these situations, local health and safety precautions are followed.


Share your stories of how you are engaging in citizen science while staying socially

distant at info@ylaces.org or https://www.facebook.com/YLACES.


Hear directly from innovative educators who are taking the lead on new citizen science approaches during COVID (from the MAEOE Annual Conference, February 6, 2021): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-7A4FF-gnuA&list=PLTAfvVbPc9ikD1Awcx3rH5khgTRQW7DT0&index=14


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ABOUT YLACES

Youth Learning as Citizen Environmental Scientists assists and rewards the implementation of inquiry-based, experiential science education where students do science and contribute to understanding of our environment through recognition and financial reward programs.

Grants range from equipment and supplies for taking environmental measurements to recognition and support for students presenting their research projects and working for pervasive inclusion of student research projects in science teaching. 

© 2020 by Youth Learning As Citizen Environmental Scientists.