In this activity, students investigate how sea levels might rise when ice sheets and ice caps melt by constructing a pair of models and seeing the effects of ice melt in two different situations. Students should use their markers to predict the increase of water in each box before the ice melts.
This teaching activity addresses environmental stresses on corals. Students assess coral bleaching using water temperature data from the NOAA National Data Buoy Center. Students learn about the habitat of corals, the stresses on coral populations, and the impact of increased sea surface temperatures on coral reefs. In a discussion section, the connection between coral bleaching and global warming is drawn.
This video profiles the Arctic Inuit community of Sachs Harbour and its collaboration with scientists studying climate change. Changes in the land, sea, and animals are readily apparent to the residents of Sachs Harbourâmany of whom hunt, trap, and fishâbecause of their long-standing and intimate connection with their ecosystem. Scientists from a climate change study project interview the residents and record their observations. The scientists can use these firsthand accounts along with their own collected data to deepen their understanding of climate change in the polar region.
This video from the U.S. National Academies summarizes the energy challenges the United States faces, the technological challenges, and the need for behavior and policy changes required to meet the challenge.
This lesson is a lab in which students use thermometers, white and dark paper, and lamps to measure differences in albedo between the light and dark materials. Connections are made to albedo in Antarctica.
This video addresses the impact of climate change on several butterfly populations. Warming temperatures lead to shifts in location of populations of butterflies or die-offs of populations unable to adapt to changing conditions or shift to new locations.
Note: you may need to scroll down the Changing Planet video page to get to this video.
This video illustrates how atmospheric particles, or aerosols (such as black carbon, sulfates, dust, fog), can affect the energy balance of Earth regionally, and the implications for surface temperature warming and cooling.