NASA Goddard Space Flight Center Scientific Visualization Studio, USGS (US Geological Survey), NSIDC (National Snow and Ice Data Center)
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About Teaching Climate Literacy
Other materials addressing 1b
Other materials addressing 2f
1.2 Thermal energy.
Energy is a physical quantity.
2.3 Earth's climate driven by the Sun.
Physical processes on Earth are the result of energy flow .
Benchmarks for Science Literacy
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Teaching Tips | Science | Pedagogy |
About the Science
- This interactive activity allows students to learn about how materials, such as snow, ice, and water, differ in their ability to reflect and absorb the sun's energy and how melting polar ice creates a positive feedback loop that accelerates global warming.
- Students investigate how the presence of pollution, such as soot, lowers the albedo of ice and further increases melting. In addition, they observe the decline in Arctic sea ice cover from 1979–2007 and the effect of melting ice on sea levels.
- Comments from expert scientist: Gives a good clear overview of albedo, and importantly, the ice albedo feedback. Nicely steps from basic concept of albedo, to role of albedo in the climate system.
About the Pedagogy
- This interactive visualization is an effective tool that could be used in a discussion or as homework.
- While not a very dynamic presentation, the visualization is effective.
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