Get to know your community better. Studying the people and the environment in the place where you live has numerous benefits.
- A local scale inquiry builds on experience and insights that you are already accumulating through your everyday lived experiences.
- You can take advantage of opportunities for experiential learning and develop your skills through direct observation and interaction.
- You can connect learning to civic action and find ways to contribute to your community based on what you are learning.
These are two tools designed to help you access, collect, and learn from information about your local area. These can help you better understand the place where you live and study. They can also help you find ways to connect with and contribute to your community.
- Community Environmental Justice Screening Tool (PDF)
- 2020 US Census Community Demographic Data Collection Sheets (PDF)
The California Geographic Alliance and California Global Education Project are launching a new professional learning and leadership opportunity for teachers. Funding provided to the California Subject Matter Projects by the state legislature through makes it possible for us to offer a unique 17-month fellowship program. Successful applicants will develop strategies and resources for integrating computer science principles into geography instruction.
This program is based on two premises.
- Geographic thinking and computational thinking are both powerful tools for students to use in understanding their world and the social and environmental issues that shape their lives at local and global scales.
- Integrating computer science into geography instruction can strengthen students’ understanding of geographic concepts. It also gives them strong preparation for applying geographic thinking and making meaningful contributions in the era of big data and big global challenges.
No matter the subject area you teach, you are eligible to apply for this fellowship if you are invested in developing your students’ geographic knowledge and skills.
The California Geographic Alliance is proud to announce the winners of the 7th Annual My California GIS Mapping Showcase and Competition.
This exciting statewide opportunity encourages middle (4th-8th grade) and high school (9th-12th grade) students to harness the power of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and connect with their state by producing a StoryMap. The state competition is part of a national competition sponsored by Esri, creators of ArcGIS Online software and educational resources that are freely available to K-12 schools. $100 in prize money is allocated to the student author(s) of up to five award-winning projects in each division. The first place project in each division also advances to the national competition.
Continue reading My California GIS Mapping Showcase and Competition – 2023 Winners
Registration for the 2023-24 competition is WILL BEGIN IN FALL!
The 2023-24 edition of the “My California GIS Mapping Showcase and Competition” is the 8th running of this annual event. This exciting statewide opportunity encourages middle (4th-8th grade) and high school (9th-12th grade) students to harness the power of Geographic Information Systems (using free Esri ArcGIS Online software) and get connected with their state by producing an online map that focuses on stories, issues, or ideas that are important to them. Prizes valued at $100 are awarded to the student or student team submitting each of up to 5 projects selected for commendation in each category. One project in each category will be advanced to the national competition.
Learn more about the competition.
CALLING ALL FOURTH GRADE TEACHERS IN CALIFORNIA!
The California Geographic Alliance and California Global Education Project have collaborated to create an online professional learning course that supports teachers in using the revised student atlas, California: A Changing State (2nd Ed.), as a teaching and learning resource.
Enroll now for the next class September 26 through November 6, 2023.
- This is a 6-week course (three 2-week modules, 4-5 hours per module) offered through the University of San Diego Professional and Continuing Education program.
- The instructor is Thomas Herman, PhD, Director of the CGA.
- Enrollment in the course is $219, which includes $79 for recording of one graduate level extension credit.
- Atlas and all required materials are provided online.
- 4th grade teachers in California who complete the course will receive a classroom set of atlases (20 copies) plus additional instructional materials, while supplies last!
The California Geographic Alliance is proud to announce the winners of the 6th Annual My California GIS Mapping Showcase and Competition.
Continue reading ANNOUNCING THE WINNERS OF THE 2022 MY CALIFORNIA GIS MAPPING COMPETITION
This is an exciting Professional Learning program presented by the California Environmental Literacy Initiative, several California Subject Matter Projects, and the California Geographic Alliance. We are excited to support a cohort of teachers to become leaders in using an exciting new resource for place-based environmental learning and action.
In the 3-part series, teachers will get experience with classroom-ready resources and will learn how they and their students can use geospatial tools to develop their own inquiries. The CHELA (California’s Hub for Environmental Learning and Action) website helps educators, students, and collaborators:
- use powerful GIS mapping tools to access current data and visualize, understand, and analyze important issues in a way that centers their own communities and concerns, wherever in the state they may live;
- follow their interests and hone their own questions across a broad range of topics related to the environment, sustainability, and environmental justice; and
- share their stories of environmental learning, action, and advocacy.
Continue reading Environmental Justice for California Communities: An Interdisciplinary Workshop Series for Secondary Teachers
After going virtual in 2021, the CCSS Annual Conference is back March 4-6, 2022 at the Hyatt Orange County in the city of Garden Grove.
Consider attending these sessions to learn about resources for geography and environmental literacy instruction. Continue reading CGA at CCSS 2022
To recognize California Biodiversity Day , the California Geographic Alliance is organizing students across the state to become Biodiversity Explorers and Mappers. In the interest of developing environmental literacy and stewardship in all young people, this will be an opportunity for close observation and appreciation of the amazing diversity of organisms present in our state, which is a global biodiversity hotspot.
Continue reading Celebrate California Biodiversity Day by Documenting Biodiversity in Your Spaces, Sept. 4-12
On May 12, the California Geographic Alliance announced the winners of the 5th Annual My California GIS Mapping Showcase and Competition. This exciting statewide opportunity encourages middle (4th-8th grade) and high school (9th-12th grade) students to harness the power of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and get connected with their state by producing a StoryMap that focuses on stories, issues, or ideas that are important to them. The state competition is part of a national competition sponsored by Esri, creators of industry-leading ArcGIS Online software that is freely available to K-12 schools. $1,000 in prize money will be distributed to the students producing the top five projects in each division. The first place project in each division will also be advanced to the national competition.
The My California contest is coordinated by Dr. Waverly Ray, Associate Professor of Geography at San Diego Mesa College. A panel of academic and industry experts, all of whom serve as volunteers, serve as competition judges. Dr. Ming-Hsiang Tsou, Professor of Geography at San Diego State University, has served as head judge for the competition since its inception. The CGA is grateful for this support!
The CGA also sincerely thanks all of the superhero educators across the state who, despite all the challenges of this year, gave their students the great experience of using GIS to create their own maps and projects. Teachers are the best, and we appreciate your help in bringing the power of geographic thinking and geospatial technologies to your students.
And now the real stars of the show… Continue reading Announcing the Winners of the 2021 Student GIS Mapping Competition