Welcome to the High School Strand on-demand webinar Room.  Below you will find all of the webinars that focus on High School grade-level content.

The Resilience Project: Transformation in Sustainability Community Engagement Projects

There is a critical need to address climate challenges rapidly and on a large scale. The Sustainability Community Engagement Project engages students in THE most important challenge of their lifetime- climate change and its myriad disruptions. No matter the reason for the lack of American engagement, what is most needed now as outlined in IPCC (2018) is “urgent, transformational change” in our social-ecological systems. The Resilience Project is an experiential project in community engagement that is expansive and frequently transformational for students researching, conducting sustainability, and creating resilience. Over the last decade, an Environmental Sustainability course employed project-based learning to engage students in community sustainability. To date, the course has produced over 700 community sustainability projects, across the Kansas City Metropolitan region and beyond. The course has since been shared with Dual Credit and other high school classes and an art institute foundation class

The 1964 Freedom Schools as a Neglected Chapter in Geography Education

A neglected chapter in history of geographic education–the civil rights organization SNCC and the Freedom Schools it helped establish in 1964. Functioning as an alternative to Mississippi’s racially segregated and discriminatory public schools, Freedom Schools not only addressed the basic education needs of Black children but also created a curriculum to build their confidence and skills to question and mobilize against the historical and geographical forces behind White Supremacy. Long predating social justice teaching in mainstream classrooms, Freedom Schools produced a critical regional pedagogy to help students identify the regional conditions of their oppression in the South, compare life in Mississippi to other regions, and counter-map structures and scales of power behind racism.

Geospatial Tools that Empower Student Humanitarianism

Service Learning and Geospatial technology can empower your students and empower your lessons. This session will demonstrate examples of empowering you and your students to learn and serve at the same. We also explore how students will engage in humanitarian efforts from the comfort of your classroom. Teachers will also hear how they can possibly be financially supported in these efforts to engage their students in service learning.

A Step Toward Decolonization: Understanding Indegenous Culture Place Names

Indigenous place names possess traditional knowledge, world view, and information related to spirituality and culture. Non-natives can better understand and respect Indigenous cultures by studying what the names reveal. Handouts.


Cartooning in a Geography Classroom uses a PowerPoint presentation to explore the use of newspaper cartoons in grade 7-12 classrooms. After examining the types of newspaper cartooning, participants receive strategies to read and analyze political cartoons. All material relates to the concepts of geographic thinking with suggestions to create computer generated cartoons. Links to cartoon resources are provided

Audio Storytelling for Impact

Oral storytelling traditions are as old as humans themselves. Our earliest ancestors were telling stories to entertain, inform, and pass down important knowledge. Today, audio stories still serve that same purpose, and with the help of accessible podcasting platforms, a good story has the power to compel listeners around the world to action on pressing global issues. We live in the most connected age in human history, and yet the worldview of our students can be so narrow. When students have the opportunity to produce their own audio stories that center on their ways of knowing and being in the world, they gain intellectual curiosity and confidence.  

By the end of this session, attendees will 1) identify the key elements of compelling audio storytelling, 2) examine human-environment issues through a critical “glocal” lens, and 3) become familiar with a free, cloud-based audio production called Anchor.

COVID-19 & Health Equity: How can we slow the spread of the COVID-19 virus to protect our communities

Explore how the COVID-19 and Health Equity unit, How can we slow the spread of the COVID-19 virus to protect our communities? supports geography, social studies, and science learning goals as well as the social emotional wellness of students. In this session, you will engage in the anchor lesson using “learner hat”. From a student’s perspective, you will explore how the COVID-19 virus has impacted different communities in the United States. You will analyze data on COVID-19 case counts, COVID-19 deaths, and census data to identify spatial and temporal patterns in the communities. From patterns in the data, you will generate initial explanations about why these patterns exist and develop questions to further investigate the problem. You will then transition to “educator hat” to view the unit storyline, the geography, social studies, and science learning goals at play in the unit, and the social and emotional learning (SEL) supports integrated throughout the unit.


Mapping Vending Machines: Bring GIS Into Your Classroom

Using GIS and doing fieldwork in my classroom always felt like it was just out of reach. It was intimidating and overwhelming. This activity attempts to break past that and give teachers a model to follow where students map and analyze geospatial data to solve a problem by answering the question: where is the nearest vending machine? We will use the geo-inquiry process from National Geographic and various tools from ESRI.

Exploring Sense of Place: Student-led Virtual and IRL Independent Studies

In this webinar, we will discuss a culminating project for AP Human Geography students  which motivated students to answer essential questions of inquiry:
-Why do we value some spaces more than others?
-How do humans curate and show value in a space?
-What are the implications of the human imprint?
-What happens when we stop placing value on our spaces?

The investigation was an independent study in which students chose from eight different pathways of exploration surrounding the concept of sense of place. Employing Google tools we learned to use over the course of the school year, students researched and presented their findings of sense of place, paying special care to connect their observations to Yi-Fu Tuan, the leading academic on the topic of geographical sense of place. Depending on the student’s choice of inquiry, students were assigned an academic journal article written by Yi-Fu Tuan. After annotations, students are encouraged to contemplate the philosophical thoughts of Yi-Fu Tuan during their investigation, and ultimately choose one quote from the professor that best reflects their findings, to include in their final project’s commentary.

Invitations to Inquiry with FieldScope: Engaging Students with Community & Citizen Science Data

Do you want to support kids in working with maps, graphs, and community and citizen science data sets? BSCS Science Learning has developed Invitations to Inquiry with FieldScope, free instructional activities designed to connect students with environmental data and build their confidence in working with the data to answer questions about the world. This session will focus on using an inquiry model to support students as they map and graph real-world data. Bring your computer and be ready to explore data in FieldScope.

Geography, Student Outcomes, and Educational Equity: Future Needs

This webinar will present the latest findings from current large-scale empirical research using data from the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) in Geography. Session content will feature forthcoming articles in a special issue of the Journal of Geography.

The first 20 minutes will be devoted to the results of a descriptive analysis of geography achievement in the United States, 1994-2018.

The next 20 minutes will focus on research by doctoral students who used the NAEP Data Explorer to address questions about student achievement and classroom-level “opportunity to learn” variables (e.g., curriculum content and exposure, teacher training, teaching experience, instructional modalities, and processes). Attendees will receive copies of NAEP data reports for small-group discussion and reflection.

Bug Appétit: How Insects are Creating Globally Sustainable Foods

This presentation is designed to introduce participants to the world of insects and how they are changing the global food scene. It is designed to incorporate science and social studies. Participants will learn background information about the environmental impact of trying to feed the world’s population. Through a variety of resources, they will learn about human-environment interaction. Content will focus on global communities, insects as a food source, and climate change. Teaching methods will be both teacher and student-centered. Kinesthetic learning will be used through a National Geographic mapping activity to teach students about different places around the world and insects that they eat. Direct instruction will be given for background information about insects, farming, and environmental impact. Materials will be provided for background reading.


In order to increase geography awareness, there has to be training of geographic perspective, content knowledge as well as exposure to ever-advancing geo-technology skills. With a blending of National Geographic Education resources and ESRI geotechnologies, Heidi Ragsdale and STEM is My Future, established the Geo Maker Institute (GMI), which provides training for K-12 teachers and students, focusing on Mapping and Making. The Problem-Based Learning course focuses on this Driving Question: “How can rural educators increase our regional citizens’ Geo-Awareness through GIS and maker training?” This NCGE presentation will include the structure of the GMI training, resources for implementation, ideas to share within formal and informal learning settings, and ideas for establishing personalized learning networks (PLN) for continued collaboration.


For many years, we’ve discussed the impact of GIS on student learning largely through anecdotes and examples. During this time, the promise of the technology has been real, but elusive, especially in the absence of quantitative studies of its impact. For the past few years, a team of researchers from James Madison, Northwestern, Georgetown and American Universities have been conducting an in-depth study to explore the behavioral and cognitive impact of the use of GIS by high school students. In this session, we will describe the setting for this study (the Geospatial Semester in Virginia), the study’s format and the results, including both behavioral and cognitive measures (explored using fMRI). We’ll share the growing base of evidence for the impact of GIS in learning and make the case for its impact in classrooms.


With the adoption of the U.N. Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in 2015, countries laid out a vision for supporting the well-being of all the world’s people, as well as the environment. In this hands-on/minds-on session, the presenter will engage participants in a classroom activity that introduces students to the SDGs – the aims, importance, and status – as well as the interconnections among the different goals. She will also facilitate activities for the classroom that take a deeper look into global inequities as they relate to energy use and climate resilience, and more localized inequities related to waste disposal. Participants will also engage in an activity that examines “needs vs. wants” and how this differs among communities here and around the globe.

Writing Name, Reading Hip Hop: Igniting a “True School” Hip Hop Pedagogy in the Classroom

In this workshop, Led by G.B. Rodriquez, JD Ph.D., teachers will explore and engage in the self-naming practices and pedagogies of StyleWriting (Rossomando 1996), the element of Hip Hop culture and global movement also known as aerosol or spray can art, urban hieroglyphics, street/urban calligraphy, or simply Writing, as it is called by its practitioners. Tied to the 60-minute talk titled “Burnin’ Blackbooks, Blazing Name Styles,” here participants will gain hands-on experience with the transformative “True School” Hip Hop cultural model for teaching and learning developed in my innovative doctoral research and deepened across the pedagogies and practices of a 9th-grade Geography classroom.

A student co-presenter will begin the session with a performative presentation and co-facilitate the practice-based portion.