Earth Day 2020


April 22, 2020 is the 50th Anniversary of Earth Day, a celebration of the importance of the environment, and the preservation and conservation of nature. Public libraries can help celebrate Earth Day through a variety of outreach, educational, and programming activities using the resources listed below:

Space Science Institute - Our Planet: Earth

The Space Science Institute and NASA have created a great suite of programming resources that public libraries can use to celebrate Earth Day. Check out this website for fun and engaging activity ideas, educational videos, amazing space photographs, and other great information you can use for Earth Day at your library!

Resource Highlights from the Our Planet: Earth Website
  • Earth Campaign Video Collection
  • NASA Earth Day Posters
  • STARNet Activity - Windy City Tower
  • STARNet Activity - Edible Destruction

Citizen Science on SciStarter

April is also Citizen Science Month, and SciStarter is a great place to get involved! SciStarter is an "online community dedicated to improving the citizen science experience for project managers and participants." You can search for over 3,000 projects, using a variety of filters like location, topic, and age level. If you create an account with SciStarter, you can track which projects you are involved in, see what your contributions are, and give feedback!

Popular Citizen Science Projects
  • Globe Observer - Help scientists track changes in clouds, water, plants and other life in support of earth science research
    • Globe Observer Trees
    • Globe Observer Clouds
  • Stall Catchers
  • Stream Selfies
  • Globe at Night
  • CoCoRaHS - Community Collaborative Rain, Hail, and Snow Network

For the Globe Observer Project, there are actually book lists for books related to the Globe Observer. Check them out and see if any look interesting to you!

Citizen Science Kits in Public Libraries

Some public libraries have created kits for specific citizen science projects that patrons can check out to participate in. To read more about these kits, their contents, and how they are used, check out the following website from SciStarter:

Montana Citizen Science Project: What We Value About The Land

Led by faculty at Montana State University, WAFERx (Water Agriculture Food Energy Research Nexus) is a research project that seeks to evaluate the implications of adopting Bioenergy with Carbon Capture and Storage in the Upper Missouri River Basin. Part of the research grant includes outreach, community involvement and land observation, both of which can happen with the Globe Observe Land Cover App. 

Participants of all ages will consider how our lands are used (for agriculture, energy, recreation, cultural/spiritual sites, etc.) and how those uses impact us personally. Participants will also think about how land use in their community has changed over time and will have the opportunity as citizen scientists to share land cover data with NASA Earth scientists.

For more information, please see the WAFERx Website.

To stay updated with MSU Citizen Science opportunities, please sign up for their mailing list

Montana Citizen Science Project: Yellowstone Phenology Project

Phenology is the study of nature’s calendar, especially in relation to climate, and the timing of plant and animal life cycles. Help park staff research environmental change in Yellowstone. The Yellowstone Phenology Project, in collaboration with NEON, is now in its third year again seeks to engage youth and adults from all backgrounds to collect essential data to help park scientists and managers better understand how the Yellowstone ecosystem is responding to changing environmental conditions.

To learn more, you can:

Other Citizen Science Resources

MSL Webinar on Earth Day

The State Library is hosting a webinar on Tuesday, January 21st, from 10:30 - 11:30 am. You can find an event description and the webinar link at the Earth Day Webinar Event page.

A recording of the webinar will also be posted to the Montana State Library's Vimeo for those who wish to view it.



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