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National Geographic Launches COVID-19 Remote Learning Emergency Fund For Educators

Fund supports teachers designing innovative resources and methods during the pandemic

Educators are among the many on the frontlines of COVID-19. During a time of immense disruption, they are adapting their teaching methods, testing new skills, and discovering new solutions to advance learning in profoundly new ways. To support these efforts, the National Geographic Society is launching a fund for K-12 educators who are designing instructional resources to help other educators teach in remote- and hybrid-learning environments. 

The fund aims to support at least 50 teaching professionals, including formal and informal classroom educators, with grants ranging from US$1,000–8,000. Applicants can apply individually, in collaboration with other educators, or with National Geographic Explorers. Once developed, the resources will be freely available on the National Geographic Society education website and within the National Geographic education communities on Twitter and Facebook, for use across different schools and communities, to support as many educators and students as possible.

The role of teachers has never been more important as they work tirelessly to engage and inspire their students in a socially distant world. Our goal is to equip educators with the resources and support they need to continue creating, innovating and pioneering new ways of teaching so their peers and their students can continue growing.National Geographic Society Chief Education Officer Vicki Phillips

The fund places particular emphasis on remote- and hybrid-learning resources, methodologies, and practices that use the power of science, social studies and geography to help students understand the significance of current and complex challenges such as a global pandemic.

Other priorities include, but are not limited to, resources that:

  • Adapt one of National Geographic’s science or social studies units for elementary, middle, or high school students (refer to our Resource Library for reference) to address each group’s curricular needs and for use in a hybrid-learning environment; and develop a complementary teacher’s guide.
  • Design innovative ways to bring the world to students and help them bridge their personal experiences to a more global perspective on critical issues (such as sustainability, climate, social or environmental justice, and racial justice).
  • Draw on the concepts and pedagogy in the National Geographic Learning Framework or the National Geographic Geo-Inquiry Process to design instructional resources or projects that meet the goals of this opportunity.

To see all application guidelines, educators are encouraged to apply at NatGeoEd.org/covidgrants. All submissions will be reviewed on a rolling basis and applications may be submitted until further notice.

Priority will be given to teachers working in communities that have been particularly hard hit by the pandemic, and who have not previously received National Geographic funding. We strive to identify, support and elevate a range of educator voices, perspectives and communities. 

To provide additional guidance during the application process, the Society is offering weekly virtual “Design Labs” for educators to talk directly with their peers and Society staff for ideation, inspiration and technical support. Educators can also ask questions by visiting @NatGeoEducation on Twitter. To see the full list of support options for teachers, visit NatGeoEd.org/covidgrants.

The emergency fund for educators is part of National Geographic’s ongoing effort to support its global community of scientists, explorers, educators and storytellers during these challenging times. In March, the National Geographic Society announced the COVID-19 Emergency Fund for Journalists to support local coverage of the pandemic and its impact on communities. The announcement ultimately prompted more than 2,300 applications, resulting in over 150 grant recipients, representing over 50 countries.

To learn more about how to support or fund this important project, please contact National Geographic at givinginfo@ngs.org.

About National Geographic Society

The National Geographic Society is a global nonprofit organization that uses the power of science, exploration, education and storytelling to illuminate and protect the wonder of our world. Since 1888, National Geographic has pushed the boundaries of exploration, investing in bold people and transformative ideas, providing more than 14,000 grants for work across all seven continents, reaching 3 million students each year through education offerings, and engaging audiences around the globe through signature experiences, stories and content. To learn more, visit www.nationalgeographic.org or follow us on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook.