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Following Raindrops

KQED, Teachers' Domain

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This video examines how scientists learn about the effects of climate change on the water cycle and what those effects might mean for our planet.

Video length 8:06 min.

Learn more about Teaching Climate Literacy and Energy Awareness»

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

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

  • Students should have a general knowledge of the water cycle and the definition of "isotope" before beginning this lesson.

About the Science

  • Video details the work of an interdisciplinary team of scientists who look at the isotopic composition of water at different points in the water cycle and model how changing water flows will affect other features of the planet.
  • Comments from expert scientist: The video presents how many scientific disciplines work together to understand the complex processes of how climate affects the hydrologic cycle. The graphical explanations of isotopes and the hydrologic cycle are clear and would be accessible to a high school science audience. Additionally, the video shows researchers working at real field sites, which demonstrates the "real world impact" of the science.
  • Passed initial science review - expert science review pending.

About the Pedagogy

  • Female scientist is featured.
  • Lesson plan and additional resources from KQED provided via link from Teachers' Domain page.

Technical Details/Ease of Use

  • The online version of the video is not of sufficient resolution for classroom projection. Not accessible on an iPad.

Next Generation Science Standards See how this Video supports:

Middle School

Disciplinary Core Ideas: 2

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.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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