This activity introduces students to different forms of energy, energy transformations, energy storage, and the flow of energy through systems. Students learn that most energy can be traced back to nuclear fusion on the sun.
In this audio slideshow, an ecologist from the University of Florida describes the radiocarbon dating technique that scientists use to determine the amount of carbon within the permafrost of the Arctic tundra. Understanding the rate of carbon released as permafrost thaws is necessary to understand how this positive feedback mechanism is contributing to climate change that may further increase global surface temperatures.
This short video uses animated imagery from satellite remote sensing systems to illustrate that Earth is a complex, evolving body characterized by ceaseless change. Adapted from NASA, this visualization helps explain why understanding Earth as an integrated system of components and processes is essential to science education.
This short activity provides a way to improve understanding of a frequently-published diagram of global carbon pools and fluxes. Students create a scaled 3-D visual of carbon pools and net fluxes between pools.
This short, engaging video created by NASA presents a complex topic via a simple analogy. The idea of positive and negative feedback is demonstrated by Daisyworld - a world with black and white flowers growing on it.
Students perform a lab to explore how the color of materials at the Earth's surface affect the amount of warming. Topics covered include developing a hypothesis, collecting data, and making interpretations to explain why dark colored materials become hotter.
This video focuses on the science of climate change and its impacts on wildlife on land and in the sea, and their habitats in the U.S. There are short sections on walruses, coral reefs, migrating birds and their breeding grounds, freshwater fish, bees, etc. Video concludes with some discussion about solutions, including reduce/recyle/reuse, energy conservation, backyard habitats, citizen scientists.