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Reflections on the Creation of a Heliophysics Community of Practice

Posted by Andi Nelson 68 days ago

[This is one of a series of blog posts about our six-year involvement leading the NASA Heliophysics Science Education and Public Outreach Forum.]

Since January 2012, a group of science educators, NASA mission scientists and education specialists have met monthly online to discuss current heliophysics research and share educational resources and best practices to incorporate into their classrooms.

Originally, this group began as a group of twelve middle and high-school science educators recruited to participate as Lead Teachers to establish a Heliophysics Community of Practice (HCoP). These teachers were previous participants in existing NASA SMD E/PO Heliophysics teacher professional development programs, such as the Heliophysics Educator Ambassadors (HEA), the Geomagnetic Event Observation Network by Students (GEONS), THEMIS professional development programs and Van Allen Probes workshops.

Several participants had kept in touch with each other informally, continuing the supportive relationships they had formed during their educator programs. Using multi-mission funding and efforts, NASA E/PO educator coordinators were able to establish a more formal opportunity for these educators to meaningfully engage with others and support them in continuing to teach heliophysics in their existing classrooms.

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