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In The News

Join Professional Organizations!

August 24, 2012
Erica Martin, Tim McDonnell


If you are not a member of the New York Geographic Alliance, we encourage you to join us. It's easy and it's free! You can do so very quickly from the home page of this website. Click on the tab that says, "Become a Member of NYGA." After answering some very basic questions, you will be automatically enrolled.

Why should you be a member? By visiting this website, you have already indicated that you are concerned about geography and how it is taught (or NOT being taught) in our schools. The New York Geographic Alliance is the only statewide organization that advocates for geographic education. The more members we have, the more leverage we can flex in Albany. By becoming a member, you get newsletters sent electronically around five times per year. This gives you advance notice of workshops and conferences. We always give preference to our members. We also have a Members Only section, where you can download free materials - lessons, PowerPoints, maps, and MORE! This is not available to non-members.

The NYGA also encourages you to join other organizations with similar goals. The National Council for Geographic Education (NCGE) is highly recommended. They promote geography on a national level. There is a membership fee, but they have great resources at their website. They hold annual meetings, usually in the fall. This year it is in San Marcos, Texas.

Please also consider joining our sister organization, the New York State Council for the Social Studies. Geography is one of the strands of social studies, so we work with NYSCSS frequently. Today's educational climate has not been good for history, geography, and citizenship. In a time of tight budgets, this is where the state looks to cut. The Grades 5 and 8 social studies assessments, for example, were eliminated a few years ago. NYGA and NYSCSS are pushing for MORE social studies in classrooms (K-12), not less. If you care about students getting a well-rounded education, you should consider joining the New York State Council for the Social Studies. This is the link to their website! They hold their convention every March, and this year it will be in Rye, NY (Westchester County). We will be there... will you?