Celebrate Earth Science Week! October 11 – 17, 2020

Governor Sisolak has declared October 11–17 as “Earth Science Week” in Nevada:

Earth Science Week Focus Days:
Monday, October 12 is Mineral Day!
“Join us in raising awareness of and appreciation for minerals and mineralogy!”


Minerals are naturally occurring, inorganic solids with a definite chemical composition, and crystalline structure. Minerals are classified using many of their physical properties including luster, smell, color, streak (the color of the powder a mineral leaves behind after being scratched on a rough, porcelain surface), specific gravity, cleavage, and hardness. If you would like to learn more about the basics of minerals, check out some of these activities here: http://www.nbmg.unr.edu/ScienceEducation/K12.html



NBMG Rock Garden at GBSSRL
In celebration of “Mineral Day,” we are excited to share news of the updated NBMG Rock Garden at the Great Basin Science Sample and Records Library (GBSSRL) linked below. A new permanent link will be available soon.


A huge thank you goes to Jonathan G. Price, State Geologist Emeritus, for providing the wonderful samples in the garden! In the link above, Jon has included a detailed description of the samples, chemical formula, and location collected. He first set up this garden in 2010 to provide visitors a place to collect some interesting Nevada rocks and minerals.

“Feel free to take a few pieces for your personal rock and mineral collections, but please take only one of any rock or mineral.  Also, please do not move the rocks around too much as you explore, so the grid will still be accurate for others.  Thank you.  Enjoy Nevada’s great and interesting geology.”

If there are others there at the garden when you arrive, please maintain social distancing and wait for them to finish.

NBMG Virtual Field TripHot Springs Mountains
This year, Earth Science Week is celebrating the theme “Earth Materials in Our Lives.” In conjunction with the theme, our virtual field trip will take us on a tour of the natural history and geological resources in the Hot Springs Mountains of west-central Nevada. Our field trip will be a little different this year as we aim to bring the outdoors and wonder of our unique state to you remotely and socially distanced. This year we won’t be following a road log or touring sites in person, but we will be bringing some beautiful scenery, fascinating geology, and natural history directly to you, wherever you are. Information on this tour will be coming this week so stay tuned, and thank you for being a part of our virtual Earth Science Week tour!


Tuesday, October 13 is Earth Observation Day and No Child Left Inside (NCLI) Day!

Earth Observation Day

“Engage students and teachers in remote sensing as an exciting and powerful educational tool.”

“Earth Observation Day (EOD) is a Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) education and outreach event sponsored by AmericaView to celebrate the Landsat mission (landsat.usgs.gov and landsat.gsfc.nasa.gov), a joint effort of the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). In recent years, EOD is also part of Earth Science Week (ESW).  The Landsat program has provided a continuous space-based record of the surface of the Earth since 1972. Every day, Landsat satellite imagery provides information to scientists, researchers, farmers, forest managers, policy makers, and many others that helps them make wise decisions about our resources and our environment. In 2020 EOD will be celebrated officially on Tuesday, October 13. But as we like to say at AmericaView, “Every day is Earth Observation Day!”  Follow AmericaView for Earth Observation Day updates on Facebook and Twitter.”

“Tuesday’s Earth Science Week theme is Earth Observation Day which aims to engage students and teachers in remote sensing as an exciting and powerful educational tool (AASG). Remote sensing is the scanning of the earth by satellite or high-flying aircraft in order to obtain information about it (Oxford Languages). Remote sensing techniques include both active and passive sensors. Active remote sensors emit a beam of energy directed towards the surface of the earth. The time it takes for the signal to return, the amplitude, and wavelength are all measured. Radar and Lidar (light detection and ranging) are the two most common active remote sensing techniques. Passive remote sensors detect naturally occurring energy, such as the electromagnetic waves reflected off of the earth from the sun. Photographs taken from satellites, are the most common source of electromagnetic waves measured by passive sensors (OpenEI). To learn more about active and passive sensors, and other remote sensing techniques, check out the OpenEI remote sensing techniques webpage.”

For some information on Lidar in northern Nevada, be sure to check out the NBMG story map Below the Neon: Reno’s Bare Earth and the Reno-Sparks-Carson City Area LiDAR web map.

Story map created by Irene Seelye and Rachel Micander.

No Child Left Inside Day

“NCLI Day encourages students to go outside and research Earth science in the field like a professional geoscientist.”


“No Child Left Inside” Day — NCLI Day, for short — originated in 2008 to urge young people outdoors, where they could explore Earth science firsthand. The first NCLI Day was held on Tuesday, Oct. 14, 2008, during Earth Science Week (http://www.earthsciweek.org), an annual celebration of the geosciences organized by the American Geosciences Institute (AGI) since 1998.

By 2008, the NCLI slogan had become a popular rallying cry among youth organizations, fitness groups, and government agencies interested in promoting outdoor activities. Some wished to promote exercise, some appreciation of nature, and some awareness of recreational opportunities. Working in partnership with the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), AGI structured the first NCLI Day to promote Earth science education.

Teachers led hundreds of students on a short hike from Langston Hughes Middle School in Reston, Va., to a nearby stream and wooded area. At a series of “learning stations” there, AGI and USGS scientists offered demonstrations and conducted discussions on topics such as water chemistry and biological diversity. Students sampled water, observed plant and animal life, and studied the interactions of natural systems in this hands-on exploration of Earth science. Before the day was over, students expressed what they had learned about Earth science in haikus, enjoyed a picnic lunch, and talked with NBC and NPR journalists who had arrived to cover this extraordinary educational event.

Now NCLI Day is celebrated on the Tuesday of each Earth Science Week (http://www.earthsciweek.org). But any day can be NCLI Day! Young people everywhere enjoy experiences that make learning fresh and exciting. Your students will, too. This guide contains all the information you need to begin planning your own NCLI Day. With the help of your colleagues, you can create an event that gets young people excited, shows the community what great things are happening at your school, and genuinely promotes high-quality, hands-on Earth science learning!”

Leave a Reply