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Global Climate Dashboard: Climate Variability
http://www.climate.gov/#understandingClimate

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, NOAA

This interactive displays how climate variables are changing over time (temperature, CO2, Arctic sea ice, solar flux, etc.) in graphical form. Students can examine data over the last 20 years or archived data.

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Learn more about Teaching Climate Literacy and Energy Awareness»

Climate Literacy
About Teaching Climate Literacy

Climate change is a significant and persistent change in an area’s average climate conditions or their extremes. Seasonal variations and multi-year cycles (for example, the El Niño Southern Oscillation) that produce warm, cool, wet, or dry periods across different regions are a natural part of climate variability. They do not represent climate change.
About Teaching Principle 4
Other materials addressing 4c
Environmental observations are the foundation for understanding the climate system. From the bottom of the ocean to the surface of the Sun, instruments on weather stations, buoys, satellites, and other platforms collect climate data. To learn about past climates, scientists use natural records, such as tree rings, ice cores, and sedimentary layers. Historical observations, such as native knowledge and personal journals, also document past climate change.
About Teaching Principle 5
Other materials addressing 5b

Benchmarks for Science Literacy
Learn more about the Benchmarks

Scientific investigations usually involve the collection of relevant data, the use of logical reasoning, and the application of imagination in devising hypotheses and explanations to make sense of the collected data.
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

  • Make sure students scroll down to the bottom half of the page to find the dashboard.
  • Point out that students can drag the graphs listed below into one of the 3 viewing slots above.
  • Need to click on questions marks - read more - to expand view and access other resources.

About the Science

  • Climate variability around the average (mean) state of the climate on long-term timescales, beyond that of individual weather events.
  • Comments from expert scientist: The resource contains graphs of teleconnection indices that can be easily moved to view index changes in time (1950 to present). This is a really great concept and could be very useful in classroom settings to show students the variability of climate oscillations. The resource is also appropriately labeled as climate variability so that anyone who knows the difference between climate variability and climate change could easily find the indices if that is what they are looking for.

About the Pedagogy

  • Resource offers educators a creative way to compare climate variables and outcomes and read more about the changes scientists are observing.
  • Graphs are presented in a manner that allows students to compare and contrast different climate variables such as El Niño, temperature, CO2, solar energy levels, and then click the question mark to read more.

Technical Details/Ease of Use

  • Online access only

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