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Students Measure Changes in Ice and Snow

Fairbanks KUAC and Geophysical Institute of the University of Alaska, Teachers' Domain

This short video features the Alaska Lake Ice and Snow Observatory Network (ALISON project), a citizen science program in which 4th and 5th graders help scientists study the relationship between climate change and lake ice and snow conditions.

Video length 1:56 min.

Learn more about Teaching Climate Literacy and Energy Awareness»

ngssSee how this Video supports the Next Generation Science Standards»
Middle School: 3 Disciplinary Core Ideas
High School: 2 Disciplinary Core Ideas

Climate Literacy
About Teaching Climate Literacy

Observations are the foundation for understanding the climate system
About Teaching Principle 5
Other materials addressing 5b
Effects of climate change on water cycle and freshwater availability
About Teaching Principle 7
Other materials addressing 7b

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

  • Link to the ALISON project found here http://www2.gi.alaska.edu/alison/, with ample ideas for how students might be able to download the data and compare locations around Alaska. Links to other related publications can also be found on this page.

About the Science

  • Investigations by students contribute to a larger data set that examines how lakes store solar energy and how measurements of snow density, ice thickness, thermal conductivity, and temperature gradients provide information about climate.
  • Comments from expert scientist: Presents a nice overview of a crowd-sourced research program to study the impact of climate change on Alaskan Lakes, and use these lakes as monitors of climate change. This is more of an overview of a project, than a presentation of scientific facts.

About the Pedagogy

  • Background essay, discussion questions, and standards alignment are provided.

Technical Details/Ease of Use

  • Quality of the video not high quality so is best viewed on computer monitor screen or on desktop computer.

Next Generation Science Standards See how this Video supports:

Middle School

Disciplinary Core Ideas: 3

MS-ESS2.C1:Water continually cycles among land, ocean, and atmosphere via transpiration, evaporation, condensation and crystallization, and precipitation, as well as downhill flows on land.

MS-ESS2.C3:Global movements of water and its changes in form are propelled by sunlight and gravity.

MS-ESS2.D1:Weather and climate are influenced by interactions involving sunlight, the ocean, the atmosphere, ice, landforms, and living things. These interactions vary with latitude, altitude, and local and regional geography, all of which can affect oceanic and atmospheric flow patterns.

High School

Disciplinary Core Ideas: 2

HS-ESS2.C1:The abundance of liquid water on Earth’s surface and its unique combination of physical and chemical properties are central to the planet’s dynamics. These properties include water’s exceptional capacity to absorb, store, and release large amounts of energy, transmit sunlight, expand upon freezing, dissolve and transport materials, and lower the viscosities and melting points of rocks.

HS-ESS2.D1:The foundation for Earth’s global climate systems is the electromagnetic radiation from the sun, as well as its reflection, absorption, storage, and redistribution among the atmosphere, ocean, and land systems, and this energy’s re-radiation into space.

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