How To Organize a Workshop
In the Beginning
Successful and enjoyable EdGEO workshops are likely to result if interested geoscientists, teachers and school board officials share in the initial planning. Workshops developed in this way will meet the needs of teachers in the area, and the support of many organizations will be available for various aspects of the workshop.
Focus and Format
Most workshop schedules include one or two days, although some have spanned up to five days. The organizing committee sets schedule focuses and formats, taking into account such factors as:
- Science and Geography curricula
- Needs expressed by teachers
- Expertise of participating geoscientists
- Local geology (a field component is strongly encouraged)
- Financial resources
Local circumstances will determine the timing of each workshop. Most commonly, workshops are held during a combination of school days, evenings and weekends or sometimes during summer holidays. Early consultation with school board officials and teachers may result in the designation of at least one day of the workshop as a professional development day.
An important component of each workshop is the package of resource materials provided to each participating teacher for use in the classroom. The contents of this package will vary for each workshop but typically include items such as maps, hand lenses, streak plates, magnets, hammers, rock and mineral kits, fossil sets, text books and posters. Organizers are encouraged to allocate sufficient funds to ensure that teachers have materials necessary to teach earth sciences effectively.
Organizing committees are urged to solicit funds from local geoscience organizations, service groups and businesses. The National EdGEO Workshop program supplements such funds with grants of up to $3000. Teachers are generally asked to pay a modest registration fee (about $25.00) plus any extra expenses such as hotel accommodations on field trips.
Use of EdGEO Grant Money
Workshop grants are intended to help cover the cost of resource packages, field trip transportation and advertising. Salaries are not covered.
Report on the Result
Workshop organizers are required to submit a final report. Financial details, feedback from teachers and input from organizers all help EdGEO plan to maximize the impact of its future efforts.