In this hands-on lesson, students measure the effect of distance and inclination on the amount of heat felt by an object and apply this experiment to building an understanding of seasonality. In Part 1, the students set up two thermometers at different distances from a light bulb and record their temperatures to determine how distance from a heat source affects temperature. In Part 2, students construct a device designed to measure the temperature as a function of viewing angle toward the Sun by placing a thermometer inside a black construction paper sleeve, and placing the device at different angles toward the Sun. They then explain how distance and inclination affect heat and identify situations where these concepts apply, such as the seasons on Earth and the NASA Mercury MESSENGER mission.

In this activity students learn how Earth's energy balance is regulating climate. This activity is lesson 4 in the nine-lesson module Visualizing and Understanding the Science of Climate Change.

This NASA video discusses the impacts of the sun's energy, Earth's reflectance, and greenhouse gases on the Earth System.

This classroom resource is a combination of 3 visualizations and accompanying text that illustrate how 3 key natural phenomena - cyclical changes in solar energy output, major volcanic eruptions over the last century, and El Nino/Nina cycles - are insufficient to explain recent global warming.

This short animation compares graphs of the natural variation in the sun's energy striking the upper atmosphere vs global surface temperature over a 30-year period to make the point that natural variations do not account for the rising trend line in surface temperatures.

This is a video overview of the history of climate science, with the goal of debunking the idea that in the 1970s, climate scientists were predicting global cooling.

This animated visualization of precession, eccentricity, and obliquity is simple and straightforward and provides text explanations. It is a good starting place to show Milankovitch cycles.

In this activity, students use the GLOBE Student Data Archive and visualizations to explore changes in regional and seasonal temperature patterns.

This animation demonstrates the changing declination of the sun with a time-lapse animation. It shows how the shadow of a building changes over the course of a year as the declination of the sun changes.

This short video, adapted from NOVA, explains how Earth's position relative to the Sun might be responsible for the dramatic shift in the climate of what is now the Saharan nation of Djibouti.

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