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This unit focuses on local plant species; students learn to identify common species and will examine their life cycle characteristics as evidence of climate change. Through the use of the national citizen science project titled Project BudBurst,... (View More)

In this unit, students investigate temperature cycles, tree rings, CO2 records, and the effects of CO2 on temperature, precipitation and cloud cover to determine the impacts of changing climate on forests. After gathering and analyzing local data,... (View More)

This curriculum uses an inquiry-based Earth system science approach, and leverages Project BudBurst, a citizen science phenology project, to engage students in authentic research on plant and ecosystem responses to climate change. Students collect... (View More)

This is an activity designed to develop a working definition of life. Learners will conduct a simple experiment, looking for signs of life in three different "soil" samples. The experiment introduces children to the difficulty that scientists face... (View More)

Audience: Informal education

This module focuses on ultraviolet radiation on Earth and in space and how it affects life. Learners will construct their own "martian" using craft materials and UV beads. They will explore how UV radiation from the Sun can affect living things,... (View More)

Audience: Informal education

This textbook chapter presents several biodiversity case studies, including a study of prairie soil, the 1930's Dustbowl, and the importance of soil conservation practices. The resource includes a link to current news articles and a teacher's guide.... (View More)

In this introductory textbook chapter, students become familiar with how scientists view planet Earth. This is the first chapter in the unit, A New World View, which introduces global systems science, emphasizing the concepts of environmental... (View More)

Keywords: Sustainability
Audience: High school
Materials Cost: Free

This is a lesson about how to answer a scientific or engineering question. Learners will refine the scientific question they generated in Lesson 5 so that it can be answered by data and/or modeling, brainstorm possible solutions for the scientific... (View More)

By matching maps of snow and ice amounts with maps of net radiation flux for the same time frame, students will use the Live Access Server to explore how the net radiation flux has affected the snow and ice amounts in the Northern Hemisphere, as... (View More)

Keywords: Authentic data use
Audience: Elementary school, Middle school
Materials Cost: Free

In this lesson, students use the Live Access Server to obtain real sea surface temperature data, to create maps and line graphs, and to make comparisons and conclusions about the effects of El Niño and La Ninña. The lesson includes detailed... (View More)

Keywords: El Nino; La Nina
Audience: Middle school
Materials Cost: Free
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