This unit includes six parts that introduce the learner to how climate models work. The materials include videos and animations about understanding, constructing and applying climate models.

This video is about Greenland's ice sheet, accompanied by computer models of the same, to show how the ice is melting, where the meltwater is going, and what it is doing both on the surface and beneath the ice.

This video, from Yale Climate Connections, explores the 2014 melting of the West Antarctic ice sheet that captured headlines. Interviews, animations, and news broadcasts explore what the melting meant for both the future of some of the Antarctic glaciers and sea level rise, and informs the viewer how seafloor terrain influences the speed of ice sheet melt.

This video explains how scientists construct computer-generated climate models to forecast weather, understand climate, and project climate change. It discusses how different types of climate models can be used and how scientists use computers to build these models.

This is an interactive webtool that allows the user to choose a state or country and both assess how climate has changed over time and project what future changes are predicted to occur in a given area.

In this activity, students compare carbon dioxide (CO2) data from Mauna Loa Observatory, Barrow (Alaska), and the South Pole over the past 40 years to help them better understand what controls atmospheric carbon dioxide. This activity makes extensive use of Excel.

reason for the spring barrier

Why is it so difficult to make a good ENSO prediction during the Northern Hemisphere spring? 

ENSO is a complicated thing to model. What are the challenges, and how can we overcome them?

El Nino conditions strengthened in March. Where do forecasters think we're going from here?

ENSO model forecasts thumbnail

The model predictions during 2014 were not that shabby.  A major, strong El Niño was not well justified by the predictions.