WASHINGTON (Nov. 15, 2013)—National Geographic invites the world to celebrate Geography Awareness Week (GeoWeek), Nov. 17-23. Through social media outlets, educational initiatives and community activities, National Geographic is making it simple for everyone to participate in the weeklong celebration.
GeoWeek, created by presidential proclamation in 1987 and organized by National Geographic Education Programs, is an annual public awareness program that encourages citizens to recognize the vital role that geography plays in today’s society, in ways many Americans don’t realize.
“Geography Awareness Week brings attention to an often overlooked subject that plays a vital role in every part of our lives,” said Danny Edelson, National Geographic’s vice president for education. “Knowledge of geography is vital to decision-makers and world leaders but has practical applications for all of us, from travelers looking for a good GPS unit to moms looking for local produce to online shoppers trying to understand shipping costs. To tackle many of today’s everyday problems, we must be able to understand the connections that link places and people.”
Educators and parents can take advantage of free resources on the GeoWeek Web page, www.geoweek.org, hosted on National Geographic Education Programs’ award-winning website. It provides geography-related classroom activities in addition to lists of recommended books, videos, geographer profiles and family-friendly games. This year, National Geographic also created an infographic showing just how important geography and geographic skills are to many professions.
But, you don’t have to be an educator or parent to celebrate GeoWeek. Here are our top 10 ways anyone can participate and support geography education:
- Follow @NatGeoEducation and @LoveGeography on Twitter.
- Write a letter to your local newspaper editor to spread awareness of GeoWeek.
- Tweet/post a status about why geography is important. Make sure to use #GeoWeek and #geography.
- Learn about one region/country/city you’ve never heard of before.
- Like GeoWeek on Facebook.
- Make a list of 10 places you want to visit in your lifetime; share it!
- Participate in the GeoWeek Twitter chat, Tuesday, Nov. 19, 8 p.m.-9 p.m. EST. (Follow @lovegeography for more info.)
- Hold a geography quiz/trivia night in your local community.
- Share the GeoWeek “Why Geography Matters” infographic.
- Buy GeoWeek gear and support National Geographic Education.
On the local level, during GeoWeek, grassroots organizers around the country will host events, workshops and contests at local schools and community centers. The GeoWeek website offers a toolkit with resources on how to host a local event, such as a community festival or a geography trivia evening.
About the National Geographic Society
The National Geographic Society is one of the world’s largest nonprofit scientific and educational organizations. Founded in 1888 to “increase and diffuse geographic knowledge,” the Society works to inspire people to care about the planet. It reaches more than 450 million people worldwide each month through its official journal, National Geographic, and other magazines; National Geographic Channel; television documentaries; radio; films; books; DVDs; maps; exhibitions; live events; school publishing programs; interactive media; and merchandise. National Geographic has funded more than 10,000 scientific research, conservation and exploration projects and supports an education program promoting geographic literacy. For more information, visit nationalgeographic.com.