EarthView team bios, guidelines, and more.

Friday, April 29, 2016

Hobomock Elementary School, Pembroke - April 29th

42° 03' 20" N
70° 47' 40" W 
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This week has been full of firsts for the EarthView team! On Wednesday, EarthView was to make its Dorchester debut at the Sarah Greenwood School with Dr. Hayes-Bohanan but there was unfortunately a slight problem with the fan and we had to reschedule. But we will hopefully be back to the school soon!!

Luckily, we have a back-up fan so we are back up and running for today's regular EarthView program at the Hobomock Elementary School in Pembroke! We are very excited as this is our first time visiting the school! 

The Hobomock Elementary School in Pembroke has students from Kindergarten through 6th grade. Today, the students in 4th, 5th, and 6th grade will get to experience the EarthView program! The students in Kindegarten, 1st, and 2nd grade will get a glimpse of what EarthView has to offer. 

Since it is our first visit to Pembroke, we thought that it would be nice to know some interesting historical facts about the town! Pembroke was once a part of its neighboring towns: Duxbury, Marshfield, and Scituate until Pembroke was established as a town in 1712. The area of the town is 23.48 square miles, 21.85 square miles of which is land. 
The major industries in town were box manufacturing and shipbuilding. Cranberry bog farms have also been a major part of the town. 

Because of these industries and the towns proximity to Boston (26 miles South), Pembroke experienced a significant population growth between the years 1930 and 2000. In 1930, the town had only 1,492 residents. By 2000, there were 16,927 residents! As of 2014, the town had 19,563 residents. 

We are certainly excited to be visiting Pembroke today and hope that the students of Hobomock Elementary School enjoy their visit inside of EarthView! 

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Sarah Greenwood School, Dorchester -- April 27

42° 17' 48"N
71° 04' 50"W
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Dr. Hayes-Bohanan is bringing EarthView to the Greenwood School for a short program, and ts very first visit to the Boston neighborhood of Dorchester. Two kindergarten classes will explore the world in a new way. Because students and their families have come to Dorchester from many parts of the world, this exploration will be both global and personal.
Because the Greenwood School is a dual-language school, Dr. Hayes-Bohanan will have some opportunities to practice his Spanish, which he needs for his yearly visits to study coffee and chocolate in Nicaragua!

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

EarthView at the Statehouse - April 20th

42° 21' 29"N
71° 03' 50"W
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The EarthView team is happy to be visiting the Massachusetts State House today! We will be set up in Nurse's Hall from 10am-2pm for anyone to come visit! It is free and open to the public so please stop by, just remember to wear socks!

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Howe Manning Elementary, Middleton- April 15th

42° 35' 47" N
71° 00' 51" W 
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The EarthView team is happy to be back visiting the Howe Manning Elementary School in Middleton for the fourth year in a row. It is quite far from where we were last night in Taunton, some 60 miles away! 

Our last visit to the school occurred on April 3rd, 2015 while our very first occurred on May 4th, 2012. Our first blog post about the school includes information on the town's history, check it out! 

On this day 104 years ago at 2:20 in the morning, the "unsinkable" Titanic sank four days into its maiden voyage with over 2,000 passengers about 400 miles south of Newfoundland, Canada. The map below shows the path that the Titanic took from Southampton England towards New York City which it never reached.

The Titanic struck an iceberg just before midnight on April 14th and sunk shortly there after. This came as a big surprise as the ship was built to be "unsinkable". It was designed by Irish shipbuilder William Pirrie and was 883 feet from stern to bow. The hull of the ship was divided into 16 compartments which were supposed to be watertight. The ship was thought to be "unsinkable" because four of these 16 compartments could be flooded without affecting the ships buoyancy.

When the Titanic struck the iceberg, five of the 16 compartments were damaged causing the bow of the ship to sink and forced the stern into a vertical position. By 2:20 a.m. on April 15th, the ship broke in half and sank to the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean. 

Because there were not enough lifeboats to accommodate all of the passengers and no emergency preparations, over 1,500 people died when the ship sank. Those who did survive were mainly women and children. 

In 1913, the first International Convention for Safety of Life at Sea was held in response to the Titanic disaster. The convention established rules that required all ships to have enough lifeboat space for each person on board and that lifeboat drills would be held. The International Ice Patrol was also established to monitor icebergs in the North Atlantic. 

What is freaky is that in 1898, a novella written by Morgan Robertson titled Futility essentially predicted the sinking of the Titanic. In the novella, a large ship called the Titan which was described as "unsinkable" sank in mid-April after striking an iceberg.

While it certainly cannot be confirmed that Robertson actually predicted the future, it is quite a creepy coincidence. And if any of you are looking for an adventure, Australian billionaire Clive Palmer is rebuilding the Titanic! This ship is named the Titanic II and will be an exact replica of the original, except with all of the modern amenities and safety features. The ship is set to sail its maiden voyage in 2018. Let's hope that this ship is able to complete its maiden voyage and sail complication free. 

To learn more about the sinking of the Titanic, the novella seemingly predicting the future, and the Titanic II, please click on their links. 

We hope that the students of Howe Manning Elementary enjoy their visit with EarthView today! 

Parker Middle School, Taunton- April 14th

41° 54' 05" N
71° 04' 12" W

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The EarthView team is happy to be back at the Parker Middle School in Taunton for their family geography night! We were last at the school on June 2nd, 2015 for their "Multicultural Night".

We are happy to be at this school tonight where Ms. McGann, a former BSU Geography student is a teacher. Ms. McGann was the very first student to see the EarthView balloon with Professors Hayes-Bohanan and Domingo when it was owned by a private company! 

We hope that the students and their families enjoyed their visit inside of EarthView! We hope to be back soon! 

Update: Ms. McGinnis sent us some pictures from tonight's event, many thanks! 
The student's and their families

Our ever famous EarthView!

Ms. McGinnis

Friday, April 8, 2016

Horace Mann Middle School, Franklin - April 7th

42° 05' 28" N
71° 24' 22" W 
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We are excited to be back at Horace Mann Middle School in Franklin today! We had gone to the Family Geography Night in Franklin on February 4th and were supposed to return the following day, but a snowstorm got in our way! 

As some of you may know, the EarthView team traveled to Winchester on Wednesday to attend the Family Geography Night at McCall Middle school. We had a great time, there was even a taco truck providing food for the event! 

As for today's visit to Franklin, we are certainly glad that snow did not cancel our plans again! After a fairly mild winter we really shouldn't be complaining, but here's hoping that the snow that occurred on Monday will be the last of the snow until late Fall.

We hope that the students of Horace Mann Middle School enjoy their visit with EarthView today! 

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

McCall Middle School Family Geography Night, Winchester- April 6th

42° 27' 01" N
71° 08' 05" W
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After a seemingly long two weeks off because of Good Friday and the Massachusetts Geography Bee tournament, the EarthView team is back in full swing! This week we are traveling to two schools: McCall Middle and Horace Mann Middle School. 

Tonight's visit brings us to McCall Middle School in Winchester for their annual Family Geography Night! We first attended this event last year and we had a great time interacting with the students and their families, we hope that tonight's event goes just as well! 

Last week, our very own Dr. Domingo took part in the State Geography Bee championship, that was held in Chicopee. A nice map of participants and their hometowns was created by fellow Bridgewater State University student Jason Covert and can be found on the Massachusetts Geography Alliance blog here. We would like to congratulate the winner, Saketh Jonnalagadda, an 8th grader from Stony Brook Middle School in Westford. Saketh will be traveling to Washington, D.C. to compete in the National Geography Bee in May. 

We hope that everyone attending the Family Geography Night enjoys their visit inside of EarthView! 

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Frolio Middle School, Abington- March 18th

42° 07' 06"N
70° 56' 47"W
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The Earthview team is excited to be visiting Frolio Middle School this week!  This our fourth visit to the school, our last visit was on May 8th last year

We seem to visit this school during international holiday weeks, last year we visited just after Cinco de Mayo, in 2014 we visited on Valentine's Day, and this year we're visiting just after St. Patrick's Day!

St. Patrick's Day is a global celebration of Irish culture that occurs every year on March 17th commemorating the death of the Patron Saint of Ireland, Saint Patrick. While it is not a bank holiday in the United States, it is in Northern Ireland, the Republic of Ireland, and Canada. 

On St. Patrick's Day Irish folks around the world delight in the showing their pride for their Irish heritage by wearing the colors of Ireland, green and white or orange, especially if they are from Northern Ireland. Earthview Wrangler Eva's family is from Northern Ireland but she tends to wear green on St. Patrick's Day.

Another way to celebrate St. Patrick's Day is by eating traditional Irish food such as Corned Beef and Cabbage, Potato Soup, Irish Soda Bread. 

Traditional Corned Beef & Cabbage

Irish Soda Bread 

Many communities around the world also celebrate by having a parade. South Boston has a large population of people from Ireland and hosts a large and fun parade every year!

2016 South Boston St. Patrick's Day Parade Route

Even if you aren't of Irish descent it is always fun to celebrate the cultures of other people, you learn new things and try new foods, what gets better than that?! 

Another important time to note this week is the Vernal Equinox that will occur on Sunday! It will be the official First Day of Spring and we will have exactly 12 hours of daylight and 12 hours of darkness. 

And while Spring is sprouting up on Sunday, Mother Nature did not seem to get the message as we are expecting a winter storm Sunday Night into Monday that could has the potential to bring us a lot of snow...Keep your eyes on the weather forecast this weekend! We've had a calm winter thus far so starting the Spring off with a little snow will be alright.

Photo Credits: Kevin Lemanowicz FOX 25

We hope the students of Frolio Middle enjoy their visit with EarthView Today! 

Thursday, March 3, 2016

Pyne Arts Magnet School -- Lowell, March 4

42° 37' 44" N
71° 17' 11" W 
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The EarthView team is pleased to be bringing EarthView -- itself a work of art -- to the Pyne Arts Magnet School for the first time.
Visiting a school with a focus on art is a good occasion to think about the many connections between art and geography. One is that visual and performing arts are part of what helps to define culture, and a geographic sense of place often includes the production and use of art in particular places.

It is also true that cartography -- the making of maps -- is both a science and an art. Many of the best ideas for graphic design -- such as those described by Edward Tufte in his many books and lectures -- originate in the work of cartography.

A final example is that by drawing maps,  learners of any age can become more adept at using them. Writer Deborah Farmer Kris explains the importance of maps in the age of GPS in an article on the PBS Parents blog.

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Littleton Middle School, February 26

42° 32' 32" N
71° 29' 14" W 
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View Larger Map

The EarthView team is delighted to be returning to Littleton Middle School. As we noted at the time of our 2012 visit, we pass within a few feet of this school quite often, as it located very close to Interstate 495, which is our main path to many of the schools we visit in northeastern Massachusetts.

Not only did we enjoy our first visit to Littleton Middle in 2012 -- the visit has become a regular part of our program publicity. The wonderful video the teachers made that day is still featured on our EarthView home page.

Video credit: Special-Ed Teacher and Instructional Videographer John Ogden (

During this visit, our EarthView team will include a special guest from our Geography Department. Dr. Rob Hellström is a geographer who specializes in weather and climate. The image above is from a weather station he and his students have placed in the Andes Mountains of Peru -- 15,000 feet above sea level. That is almost THREE MILES in the air, but in the Andes, that is ground level.

Dr. Hellström will be talking about this research with Littleton Middle students, and also about his work closer to home. He and his students have another weather station right on top of the science building where EarthView is stored -- and that station can be checked online any time. It's current weather is shown right here:
Dr. Hellström  and Dr. Hayes-Bohanan (part of the regular EarthView team) are working on plans to teach a course together in Peru on the geography of coffee and climate change. They will take students to coffee-farms in the lower elevations of 4 to 6 thousand feet, which are being dramatically affected by the changes in glaciers at 12 to 15 thousand feet

Friday, February 12, 2016

James L. Mulcahey Elementary School, Taunton- February 12th

41° 54' 16" N
71° 06' 43" W 
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We're back! Last week was a bit confusing with the snow day on Friday. We had gone to Horace Mann Middle School in Franklin last Thursday February 4th for their Family Geography Night and were supposed to have a day program on Friday but the snowstorm canceled that event so hopefully we will get back there soon! 

Snowfall totals Feb 5th, 2016

Today's visit brings us James L. Mulcahey Elementary School in Taunton! 

We have visited numerous schools in Taunton over the years but this is our first visit to Mulcahey Elementary! We are very excited to be bringing EarthView to students in the 2nd and 3rd grade. It is always fun to see the look of awe on the younger children's faces when they see the scope of EarthView, it really sparks their interest in the world and geography which is what we love to see! We need more geographers in the world! 

According to the Mulcahey school's website, the school was named for James L. Mulcahey who was a 1934 graduate of Taunton High School.He was inducted into the army in 1942 where he became Lieutenant Mulcahey and led troops into four major battles during World War II. He was awarded the Purple Heart for his bravery but died during battle in 1944. 

Our visit is on the 207th birthday of two very important leaders who most people do not know were born on the same day --  Abraham Lincoln and Charles Darwin. Happy Lincoln's Birthday and Happy Darwin Day!

We hope that the students enjoy their visit with EarthView today and we hope to be back again soon!


Friday, February 5, 2016

True Sizes

EarthView co-coordinator Dr. Hayes-Bohanan (first name James) saw this Bitstrip cartoon recently, and added the caption about Greenland. He is not really mad at Greenland of course; it is a geographer's joke about map projections.
Many people who enter EarthView are surprised to see that Greenland is not nearly as large as they had thought, and at first many think it must be a mistake. Globes, however, are the only kinds of maps that maintain the size, shape, direction, AND distance correctly. Flattening all or part of a map requires a projection, and one or more of these spatial properties is always sacrificed to emphasize the others.

Unfortunately, the very most common projection is the Mercator, which maintains direction correctly, but distorts size, shape, and distance, especially at high latitudes (near the north and south poles). The projection is ideal for navigation, but it is not good for understanding geographic patterns, especially at a global scale. Still, it appears most commonly in schools, textbooks, and on television news.

Fortunately, The True Size is a fun way to overcome this problem. This composite shows Greenland as it appears on Mercator maps and Greenland as it would appear if moved to Argentina.
This map is also an excellent way for learners of any age to develop spatial thinking. If we are studying a country that is not familiar, we can "pull" it to a more familiar area to get a better sense of its size and shape. The country of Syria, for example, is about the size and shape of New England, excluding northern Maine.

Another way, of course, is to learn more about projections and to select a projection that is appropriate for a particular use. The Map Projections page at is a great place to start.

Friday, January 29, 2016

Richardson Olmsted School, Easton- January 29th

42° 03' 28" N
71° 06' 40" W 
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We're back! Last night we had a wonderful family EarthView night with the students and families from Center School and Moreau Hall. Today we are back at Richardson Olmsted for more fun! Today, students from the nearby ParkView Elementary school will be seeing EarthView.

We visited the school last Friday and got to display our lovely new welcome mat!

As seen from our blog post last week, we were expected to get snow last Saturday (1/23) but at the time the weather forecast was still unsure of how much snow we would get. We certainly got lucky and did not get the worst of the storm but the Bridgewater area did receive about 6 inches of snow according to the National Weather Service. While we did not hit the jackpot for this past snowstorm, areas in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Washington D.C. sure did! Snowfall records were beaten at all three New York City airports, Newark reported 28.1", LaGuardia reported 27.9", and JFK reported 30.5"!!

We aren't the only ones who like to have fun in the snow! Check out this video of Tian Tian, a Giant Panda at the National Zoo in Washington, D.C. having loads of fun in the snow!

We hope that the students (and families) of Richardson Olmsted, Center School, and Moreau Hall all enjoyed their visits with Earthview these last two weeks! We hope to be back again soon!

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Family Geography Night at Richardson Olmsted School, Easton- January 28th

42° 03' 28" N
71° 06' 40" W 
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This week EarthView is brought back to the Richardson Olmsted School in Easton! We are very excited for tonight as it is the first time that we'll be having an EarthView Family Night at the school!

Tonight, students and their families from two of the other elementary schools in town, Center School and Moreau Hall will be able to experience EarthView!

We love when families are able to come and see EarthView for themselves, the adults are almost always in the same awe that the children are when seeing it for the first time!  

Tonight is going to be a fun night of geography, education, community, and family! We look forward to a great night! 

Friday, January 22, 2016

We're Number 18! Or Are We?

During our visit to the Richardson-Olmsted School, the EarthView team went to lunch at the nearby Andrew's Bakery, also in Easton. Among the many great things about this bakery is its use of randomly-assigned numbers to match customers to their orders. Our group got number 18:
Or was it 81?

Or was it infinity?
Or maybe infinity, infinitely
We are geographers, but we can have fun with math, too!

Incidentally, our new EarthView Welcome Mat includes the word welcome in 18 languages. Coincidence? You decide!

Seja Welcome

We always welcome students to EarthView. Now we welcome them with our terrific new welcome mat, found by one of our EarthView Wranglers. Humans speak thousands of languages -- a few of them are represented here.

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Richardson Olmsted School, Easton- January 22nd

42° 03' 28" N
71° 06' 40" W 
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Also, compare today's coordinates to those of other recent EarthView outings, near and far!

Today's EarthView visit brings us to the Richardson Olmsted School in Easton! This is our first visit back to the school since February of 2012! We are excited to be back!

Our last visit to the school was back when it was considered to be two different schools, H.H. Richardson and F.L. Olmsted. The schools were named for a building architect (Richardson) and a landscape architect (Olmsted) when they were built in 1996. In July of 2014, the school committee decided to change the name of the school to Richardson Olmsted as the "two" schools had been operating as one with only one principal and one PTA for a number of years. So we are thrilled to be visiting Richardson Olmsted for the next two Fridays and attending their Geography Night next Thursday (1/28)!

On our last visit to the school, a curious 4th grade student asked Dr. Hayes-Bohanan, "If coffee isn't in the chocolate family, what is?". He answered that question in a blog post that you can find here. Some quick fun information about the town of Easton can be found in our other blog post for that same visit here

Hurricane Alex
In an update to last week's blog post, Hurricane Alex did make landfall in the Azores off of Portugal but as a tropical storm with maximum sustained winds of 70mph. The damage from the storm was a lot less than what the residents are prepared for luckily. 

Locally, we are threatened with a Blizzard this weekend. Luckily for us, we are not in the threat of the most snowfall. Which is good because we got our fill of snow last winter! The areas that are most threatened by the storm are further south of us, in the Washington D.C. area. They could see up to 2 feet of snow! For us, the storm is not supposed to reach here until afternoon Saturday but would last through to Sunday morning leaving behind 6-12 inches possibly. While Saturday is only a day away it is still too early to tell where the storm will go exactly, things could change! 

Blizzard Potential Snow 1/21-1/24

But we are tough New Englanders, we can handle whatever this snowstorm brings us.


The EarthView team learned that when she was in fourth grade, Ms. Athanasiou (3rd-grade teacher at Richardson-Olmsted) won the GEOGRAPHY BEE at her school in Rhode Island!

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Nicholas A. Ferri Middle School, Johnston, RI- January 15th

41° 49' 47" N
71° 30' 07" W
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Also, compare today's coordinates to those of other recent EarthView outings, near and far!

Welcome back to our regular Friday school visits Earthlings! We hope that everyone had a wonderful holiday season and are happy to be back in the routine again. 

Our first visit of the new year brings us to Nicholas A. Ferri Middle School in Johnston, Rhode Island! This is our second visit ever to the school! We last visited Ferri Middle on April 10th while the students were learning about Ancient Egypt, Greece, and Rome. Our blog post for that visit includes a link to a special online typewriter that converts writing into hieroglyphs! You will have to check it out here

Today's visit comes just a few days after Dr. Hayes-Bohanan and Dr. Domingo visited the WBZ1030 AM radio station on Monday January 11th for their Geography education discussion with Dan Rae on his nightly talk show, NightSide. They had a nice discussion about why geography education is so important and what kind of jobs you can end up with if you study geography at the college level. Geography is such an important area to study, we use it everyday and we usually do not even realize it. The link to the podcast for their showcase on NightSide can be found here: NightSide - Where In The World Did Geography Class Go?

aspects of geography

In other news, there's a hurricane brewing in the Atlantic! While January is known for it's blizzards and nor'easters, a different weather event is forming and threatening the Azores off of the coast of Portugal. Hurricane Alex developed on Wednesday and is the first Atlantic Hurricane to form during the month of January since Hurricane Alice formed in January of 1955. The Atlantic Hurricane season officially runs from June 1st through November 30th but that doesn't stop hurricanes from forming outside of their typical season. Hurricane Alex is expected to impact the Azores Friday morning with at least 85mph winds and will drop up to 7 inches of rain in some spots. Flash floods and mudslides could result from the storm. Alex is not expected to threaten the United States or other parts of Europe but will most likely track towards Greenland. 

National Hurricane Center

Today is also the 97th anniversary of Boston's Great Molasses Flood. It sounds humorous, but it was actually a very serious tragedy that took place in the North End. To learn more, read the story from Mass Moments and then see the geography lessons about the flood that BSU education students developed, based on the book Dark Tide.

We hope that the students of Nicholas A. Ferri Middle School enjoy their visit with EarthView and we hope to be back again soon! 

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Captain Samuel Brown Elementary, Peabody- December 11th

42° 30' 25" N
70° 57' 02" W
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The EarthView team is excited to be back visiting Captain Samuel Brown Elementary in Peabody today! This is our second visit to the school, our first visit was in this past March. Our last blog post for the school talked about snow...luckily there is no snow in the forecast for today's visit! 

Since the blog post for the first visit to the school did not offer any fun facts on Peabody here are some!

  • Peabody is located in Essex County 
  • Had a population of 51,251 in the 2010 Census
  • Was first settled in 1626 as a part of Salem
  • In 1752, the area set off and became Danvers
  • In 1855 the community broke away and became South Danvers
  • On April 30th, 1868 South Danvers became Peabody 
  • Peabody was incorporated as a city in 1916
  • Peabody was a farm community but became the center of New England's Leather Industry
  • The city is referred to as Leather City or Tanner City by locals
  • Peabody is 16.8 square miles and is located just 15 miles northeast of Boston
This is our last EarthView visit of 2015! We hope that all of the students who have visited EarthView this year have had a wonderful experience and we hope that they'll cherish the memories that they've made for a lifetime! We will start off EarthView in 2016 on January 15th when we visit Johnston, Rhode Island! 

We wish all of our Earthviewers a wonderful holiday season and a happy and healthy new year!