Jump to this Video »
Survival of Trees
http://science360.gov/obj/tkn-video/d42c6311-c3af-482c-aa14-ab795fe86876

National Science Foundation, NBC Learn, Science 360 Network

In this video a scientist explains how DNA extracted from ancient tree remains provides insights about how trees/plants have adapted, over time, to changes in CO2 in the atmosphere. Her lab research investigates changes in plant genotypes under experimental conditions that simulate potential changes in CO2 levels in the future.

Video length: 5:22 minutes.

Discuss this Resource»
Learn more about Teaching Climate Literacy and Energy Awareness»

Climate Literacy
About Teaching Climate Literacy

Individual organisms survive within specific ranges of temperature, precipitation, humidity, and sunlight. Organisms exposed to climate conditions outside their normal range must adapt or migrate, or they will perish.
About Teaching Principle 3
Other materials addressing 3a
Ecosystems on land and in the ocean have been and will continue to be disturbed by climate change. Animals, plants, bacteria, and viruses will migrate to new areas with favorable climate conditions. Infectious diseases and certain species will be able to invade areas that they did not previously inhabit.
About Teaching Principle 7
Other materials addressing 7e

Benchmarks for Science Literacy
Learn more about the Benchmarks

The world contains a wide diversity of physical conditions, which creates a wide variety of environments: freshwater, marine, forest, desert, grassland, mountain, and others. In any particular environment, the growth and survival of organisms depend on the physical conditions
Explore the map of concepts related to this benchmark
Changes in environmental conditions can affect the survival of individual organisms and entire species.
Explore the map of concepts related to this benchmark

Notes From Our Reviewers The CLEAN collection is hand-picked and rigorously reviewed for scientific accuracy and classroom effectiveness. Read what our review team had to say about this resource below or learn more about how CLEAN reviews teaching materials
Teaching Tips | Science | Pedagogy | Technical Details

Teaching Tips

  • Could be used in a biology or Earth science class.
  • Educators can bring out the scientific method and how it is being applied to study past, present, and future.

About the Science

  • Dr. Ward studies how rising levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere may be impacting trees around the world, and even causing them to adapt. By looking at tree specimens from the Ice Age, Ward is able to see how trees in the past have adapted, helping her to understand how trees may adapt today and in the future.
  • Comment from expert scientist: Good explanation of the techniques used in this form of chrono-analysis of tree rings, capturing the genetic component as well. Also goes into why CO2 might have a strong influence on tree populations - a good concept to include.
  • Passed initial science review - expert science review pending.

About the Pedagogy

  • This video can be embedded into a discussion about paleoclimatology and how it is done, but most importantly how species' adaptations in the past can help scientists to predict their ability to adapt in the future.

Technical Details/Ease of Use

  • Video quality is good enough for projection.

Jump to this Video »



Have you used these materials with your students? Do you have insights to share with other educators about their use? Please share with the community by adding a comment below.

Please use this space only for discussion about teaching with these particular materials.
For more general discussion about teaching climate literacy please use our general discussion boards.
To report a problem or direct a comment to the CLEAN project team please use our feedback form (or the feedback link at the bottom of every page).
Off-topic posts will be deleted.

Join the Discussion


Log in to reply