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WES Overview

The initial step in the training of WES Resource Teachers is their participation in the WES distance-learning course. The 13-week course is offered twice a year to selected participants. It investigates the mass and energy flows associated with the global water cycle, and with related issues through the use of electronically transmitted environmental data and learning materials combined with Text and Study Guide readings and investigations.

The WES course is offered through WES Local Implementation Team (LITs) that are located around the country. LITs, typically composed of three members, coordinate the selection and delivery of the course to approximately eight teacher participants each semester. Each team advertises the local course availability, recruits and selects participants, arranges and holds local meetings, individually mentors participants on course understandings and activities, provides participant evaluations, and assists in developing WES Resource Teacher action plans. Each LIT is composed of at least one master precollege teacher and most include one professional meteorologist, hydrologist, oceanographer or environmental scientist.

Who can participate in WES?

The course is directed towards middle-school teachers, but open to all K-12 teachers, who live in an area served by a LIT . Teachers of any subject who have an interest in promoting the teaching of Earth Science across the curriculum may apply. Applications are sought from persons who can demonstrate potential for leadership as resource teachers. They must be willing to act as resource persons for other teachers and as advocates for promoting the use of electronically-delivered environmental data in schools.

Teachers who are members of groups traditionally underrepresented in the sciences, or teachers who are teaching in schools with large numbers of students from groups traditionally underrepresented in the sciences, are especially urged to apply.

What does WES participation entail?

You will need a PC or Mac computer, printer, and an Internet connection with frames and javascript browsing capability (such as version 4.0 or higher, of either Netscape or Microsoft Explorer software; or a service like America On Line, Prodigy or Compuserve). If you are reading this on-screen with your own equipment and you can print it out, you are probably ready for WES participation. To be sure, click on the link below. Move your mouse cursor over the image that appears (after a few seconds). You should be able see data readings that change with cursor location.


The only other equipment requirement is access to a facsimile machine for transmitting and receiving materials between you and your LIT mentor.

What does WES do for me?

By successfully completing the WES course, you will:

All participants are enrolled in a 3 semester-hour graduate course, entitled ESC 636 Water Resources Topics, through the State University of New York College at Brockport. Credit is awarded upon successfully completing course requirements the same semester as the course is taken.

What must I do after the WES course?

The goal of the WES Project is to empower WES Resource Teachers with the knowledge and capabilities to transform a virtually endless stream of environmental data into exciting and creative learning experiences for young people. As a WES Resource Teacher, you will be expected to introduce other teachers and administrators in your school, parents, and members of the community to the benefits of utilizing electronically-delivered environmental data streams as vehicles for learning across the curriculum.

The WES Project expects to develop a long-term working relationship with WES course participants. The goal is to upgrade scientific literacy by motivating teachers and through them, their students, to develop and nurture active interests in science, mathematics, and technology.

How do I apply for WES?

Contact your nearest WES LIT Leader by clicking on the heading 'Locate WES Team by State', listed at the top of this Homepage and request information and application materials for the next offering of the WES course.

If there is no LIT listed near you or in your state, inquiries may be sent to find out if a LIT is forming in your area by email to:

To be considered for participation, a completed application form must be submitted to your local LIT leader. You will be notified of the status of your application by the local LIT leader. Enrollment is limited and selection is based on a number of criteria.

Who makes up WES?

The WES Project operates through the combined efforts of several people working together to provide a unique enhancement opportunity for K-12 teachers.

At the local level, it consists of about 35 three-member Local Implementation Teams spread throughout the United States. These typically consist of trained master precollege teachers, local college faculty members, and professional scientists, including National Weather Service personnel and television weathercasters.

WES Central, located at the AMS Education Office in Washington DC, is a team that develops instructional materials, provides logistical support to the LITs, conducts the credit-bearing course in which most WES participants enroll, and administers the overall project. These include Dr. Ira W. Geer, WES Project Director; Dr. Joseph Moran, University of Wisconsin - Green Bay, who was primary author for the text; Dr. Robert Weinbeck, Associate Director; Bernard Blair, Information Services Coordinator; Maude Mason, Executive Assistant, and Diem Tran, Shipping Assistant. Dr. Edward Hopkins, University of Wisconsin - Madison, writes the WES Weekly Water News. Dr. David Smith, US Naval Academy, Annapolis is Co-Principal Investigator for the WES project.

The WES Project is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. ESI-9819359.

Opinions expressed are those of the authors and not necessarily those of the Foundation.

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©Copyright 2001: American Meteorological Society
This page was last updated 7 June 2001.