Free ArcGIS Online Activities for Earth Science Classrooms Released

June 15, 2015

Redlands, California—To support Esri's initiative to provide a free ArcGIS Online subscription to every K–12 school in the United States, the company has teamed with GISetc to produce the Earth Science GeoInquiry Collection.

This free set of instructional materials uses ArcGIS Online web mapping and analysis tools to enhance middle school earth science lessons. GISetc is an award-winning, longstanding publisher of GIS curricula materials for primary and secondary school students.

"Earth Science GeoInquiries provide a substantial change in the way we, as educators, use mapping and geographic analysis with data and concepts from across the science of earth systems," says Tom Baker, Esri manager for education. "Broadly, GeoInquiries introduce mainstream K–12 students and teachers to the power of web mapping in a standards-based, teacher-friendly activity, complete with modern web technology, live data, and inquiry-oriented investigations."

The collection contains 15 web-mapping activities that correspond with and extend map-based concepts in leading middle school earth science textbooks. The activities use a standard inquiry-based instructional model, require only 15 minutes for a teacher to deliver, and can run on any device. In addition, the activities harmonize with Next Generation Science Standards.

Activity topics include the following:

  • Topographic Maps
  • Remote Sensing
  • Minerals/Mining
  • Rock Types
  • Landforms
  • Plate Tectonics
  • Earthquakes
  • Volcanoes
  • Mountain Building
  • Freshwater
  • Ocean Features
  • Ground Wind and Temperature Patterns
  • Weather
  • Storms
  • Climate Change

Esri plans to release high school level GeoInquiries for US history later this year. Teachers, GeoMentors, and school administrators can learn more at

Esri is a supporter of the ConnectED Initiative.

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About GISetc
GISetc's mission is to provide cutting-edge GIS professional development, curriculum and software support to K–12 and post-secondary schools, educators and students. Their goal is to advance education, improve quality of curricula, provide authentic research and learning projects, and to provide training and skill development in an atmosphere of discovery. Learn more at

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