ReaL* Earth Inquiry Workshop Western US, Cohort #2

Mission Trails Regional Park

San Diego, California

Information for Participants


Scroll to the bottom of the page to see the Mission Trails VFE!

This page provides information for participants in our Teacher Friendly Professional Development Program on teaching local and regional Earth system science of the Western United States. 

The workshop was held at Mission Trails Regional Park in San Diego, California, June 28 -30, 2011.

Click the map for directions to the park.

Things to Do Before the Workshop:

There are two pieces of homework that are ideally to be done before the workshop. 

  1. 1.Create a “Powers of Ten” Google Earth Tour for your school or institution. For an introduction, see Your Own Powers of Ten Or, go straight to the tutorials:  If you’re comfortable with Google Earth, and have created Google Earth tours previously, this will probably take about two hours.  If you need help, don’t hesitate to contact Don at or via Skype at dugganhaas. Using Skype allows screensharing, which makes trouble shooting much easier. The two key purposes of this task are to create a useful teaching resource and to provide some familiarity with a key piece of software we’ll be using in our work together. 

The second task is a reading that should be complete before the workshop.  

  1. 2.Read the executive summary of How Students Learn: History, Mathematics, and Science in the ClassroomWe’ll discuss this the first morning of the workshop.  Here are some things to consider as you read:

•How does how you learn compare to what the authors claim?

•How should research on learning inform how we teach?

•Note that the reading is not about whether people are visual or auditory learners. It’s more about how you put information together in your head.  How do you figure things out?

  1. This task is intended to both bring this research to your attention and to bring the research to bear on our own teaching.  As the reading describes, we are asking you to be metacognitive. The chapter and it can be downloaded from the National Academy Press website:   Scroll down to the link for the free executive summary.

You may also wish to explore the project websites before the workshop:


Getting ready for the workshop...

Getting Ready:

  1. Getting Ready Overview

  2. Make Your Own Powers of Ten.

  3. Reading: How Students Learn Executive Summary.  (pdf)

Here’s a link to the agenda which includes the pre-workshop homework (corrected hyperlink 6/9/11):



Site-specific Resources:

  1. Mission Trails Regional Park Website

  2. Mission Trails Google Earth File (with topographic map, profile instructions and geologic map information)

  3. Mission Trails Picasa Page This page is where participants are sharing their pictures from Mission Trails.

  4. Digital Geologic Maps of US State

  5. The Geology of San Diego County (Brief overview from the San Diego Natural History Museum)

  6. The Geologic History of San Diego County (Brief introduction from the San Diego Natural History Museum)

Lodging Information:

  1. Old Town Inn