Professional Development for Teachers in Extreme Weather & Climate
January thru March 2023
Mount Washington Observatory is excited to continue our popular Arctic Wednesdays professional development program this winter, introducing teachers and students to the arctic landscape of Mount Washington, often dubbed the “Home of the World’s Worst Weather.” On select Wednesdays between January and March, teachers can apply to join our weather observers on their snowy commute to the Mount Washington Observatory.
Once at the summit you’ll tour our legendary weather station, take part in a weather observation and report your findings live via videoconference to your students back in the classroom. What’s more, our Education team will provide additional resources including Observatory data to support continued discovery after your trip.
Space is limited to two teachers per trip. Lunch will be provided. Advanced booking required; the cost is $249.
For questions about the program, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org. Additionally, if you'd like to follow along with our participating teachers this winter, check out the Arctic Wednesdays Community Blog
To apply, visit this link to submit an application for the program: HERE
- January: 1/4/23 (back up date 1/25/23); 1/18/23 (back up date 1/25/23)
- February: 2/1/23 (back up date 2/22/23); 2/15/23 (back up date 2/22/23)
- March: 3/1/23 (back up date 3/15/23); 3/8/23 (back up date (3/15/23)
||Meet at Maintenance Garage (Mt. Washington Auto Road)
||Orientation/Safety Talk/Gear Check in Maintenance Garage
||Depart Base. Observer/Education Specialist serves as guide.
||Arrive at the summit
||Weather Station Tour and Weather Observation Shadow
|| Shift Change Meeting
|Live Connection w/ Classroom
| 3:30 PM
|| Depart summit (latest possible time).
*Each trip will be customized to every teacher pairing to allow for flexibility in videoconference connection times, content and professional development goals. As always on Mount Washington, weather conditions and safety will dictate the schedule of activities.
- Blog- Teachers are required to write either one pre- or post-trip blog entry, detailing either their classroom preparations, trip experience, classroom lessons that resulted from this program, etc. for the group's benefit throughout the Arctic Wednesdays'; program. Also, it really adds to the excitement and creativity of the other teachers!!
- The Trip- Flexibility is the name of the game on Mount Washington, and while we’ll work hard to get you up the mountain for as long as possible, the safety of our staff, volunteers and visitors is paramount. This means some trips may require quicker turn-arounds once reaching the summit, or may require lengthy, slow trips due to thick fog, or significant snowdrifts. For these reasons and more, every trip will be unique!
- Live video-connection- While not a requirement, Observatory staff can facilitate a live video connection back to your students before, during or after your trip up to the summit.
- Orientation Meeting- Participating teachers are required to attend a virtual video conference orientation to learn about the program, ask questions and meet other teachers and Observatory staff.
- Lesson Plans- Teachers are encouraged to share a lesson plan to the Arctic Wednesdays program to aid other educators looking for new and effective ways to teach weather and climate.
Additional Resources & Opportunities
Mount Washington Observatory can provide you and your classroom with a wide range of exciting and concrete resources to deepen understanding of weather and climate. The Observatory maintains and adds to an 90-year climate record on the summit of Mount Washington containing a number of weather and climate variables on top of data from over a dozen remote ‘mesonet’ stations situated throughout the White Mountains. For readily available data, visit the Mount Washington Weather Archives for more information.
Health & Safety Requirements
Observatory trips grant access to Mount Washington's alpine zone, but not everyone is suited for this environment. Please read our full health and safety requirements to make sure you are eligible for a Mount Washington Observatory winter trip.
For your health and safety, and for the health and safety of your fellow trip mates, you will be required to come prepared with attire and gear to protect you from Mount Washington's extreme conditions. View the full list on our required winter gear list.
If you have any questions about any of this gear, don't hesitate to contact us. We will help you find what you need to enjoy the trip of a lifetime!
Extreme weather may occur at any time, and may delay a trip's ascent or descent. For this reason, we recommend that you remain flexible with your travel plans for the day before and after your trip.
Since you’ll be traveling with our summit crew on their shift change day, it’s possible the trip up the mountain may be moved a day ahead or a day late to avoid dangerous weather conditions. MWO Staff will make every effort to notify the participating teacher with as much notice as possible, but please know that notice may only be 24 or 36 hours in advance. Please be prepared for this possibility—it's part of the adventure!
Climate Change in the NGSS Classroom:
An Overnight Professional Development Program for K-12 Teachers
(2019 Dates Shown Below. Check back this Spring for 2023 Summer Dates.)
The Highest Classroom in the Northeast
Mount Washington Observatory is pleased to offer "Climate Change in the NGSS Classroom," an overnight professional development program for K-12 teachers who are looking for an exciting and direct way to learn about the Earth's climate system and natural and human-caused climate change. If you've been looking for opportunities to learn about and hone your knowledge of Next Generation Science weather and climate standards- this is the program for you!
This overnight program will allow you to fully experience the summit of Mount Washington by spending a night in our weather station at 6,288 feet above sea level, the tallest peak in the Northeast. You'll enjoy a full day of education and alpine adventures, followed by a guided tour of the Mount Washington Observatory's famous mountaintop weather station and the opportunity to learn from and get to know the scientists living and working in this remote outpost.
- Round-trip transportation to and from the summit
- A dedicated Observatory trip leader
- Admission to Extreme Mount Washington
- Dinner (Day 1), Breakfast (Day 2), Lunch (Day 2) and snacks
- An exclusive tour of our mountaintop weather station
- Presentations from our meteorologists and educators on staff
- Customized climate science programs and activities for your grade and content level
- Saturday, August 17th to Sunday, August 18th
||Meet at Maintenance Garage (Mt. Washington Auto Road), depart for summit
|Arrive at summit, orientation with snacks and drinks
||Tour of the summit inside and out
||Classroom Session 1: Climate Basics
||Social hour and dinner
||Classroom Session 2: Climate Change, Natural and Anthropogenic
||Sunrise viewing, breakfast
||Outside time, optional hike
||Session 3: Human Understanding and Responding to Climate Change
||Arrive at base
*Please note that program rates do not include an additional processing fee charged by the booking service we use. This service reduces administrative time and helps Observatory educators, educate!
Additional Resources & Opportunities
Mount Washington Observatory can provide you and your
classroom with a wide range of exciting and concrete resources to deepen
understanding of weather and climate. The Observatory maintains and adds to an
85-year climate record on the summit of Mount Washington containing a number of
weather and climate variables on top of data from over a dozen remote ‘mesonet’
stations situated throughout the White Mountains. For readily available data,
visit the Mount Washington Weather Archives for more information.
In addition to data, the Observatory offers both in-classroom and distance learning programs that can connect your students with scientists working on
the mountain, and can serve as a great introduction or follow-up to your
professional development experience. The Weather Discovery Center museum is also a great place to bring your students to
explore weather exhibits or to even connect live via videoconference with the
summit weather observers.
Health & Safety Requirements
Observatory trips grant access to Mount Washington's alpine
zone, but not everyone is suited for this environment. Please read our full health and safety requirements to make sure you are eligible for a Mount
Washington Observatory summit trip.
For your health and safety, and for the health and safety of
your fellow trip mates, you will be required to come prepared with attire and
gear to protect you from Mount Washington's extreme conditions. View the full
list on our required gear list.
If you have any questions about any of this gear, don't
hesitate to contact us. We will help you find what you need to enjoy the trip
of a lifetime!
Trip fees will be refunded for cancellations made at least 30 days before the trip date, less a $50 administrative fee. Cancellations less than 30 days but more than 14 days before the departure date will be credited at 50%. Cancellations made within 14 days of the trip date will result in the forfeiture of the entire trip fee.
A minimum of six participants is required for the trip to run. If we do not reach that minimum by one week before the trip, the trip may be cancelled. All registrants will be offered the option of a refund or a re-booking on another trip.
The safety of our guests and employees is of the utmost importance, so trips may be cancelled due to extremely inclement weather. We will do our best to notify all participants of the cancellation in advance, but mountain weather is notoriously unpredictable, so we cannot guarantee advance notice. The decision to cancel a trip could be made the morning of the trip.