Galen McKinley, University of Wisconsin - Madison
Learn more about Teaching Climate Literacy and Energy Awareness»
See how this Simulation/Interactive supports the Next Generation Science Standards»
High School: 2 Performance Expectations, 7 Disciplinary Core Ideas, 2 Cross Cutting Concepts, 9 Science and Engineering Practices
About Teaching Climate Literacy
Other materials addressing 4f
Other materials addressing 5c
Other materials addressing 6b
7.3 Environmental quality.
6.3 Demand for energy is increasing.
2.6 Greenhouse gases affect energy flow.
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Teaching Tips | Science | Pedagogy |
- Direct students to watch each projection at least twice: Once while focusing on the graph being produced, and then again to watch changes in the graphic at the bottom of the page.
About the Science
- An interactive way to look at the global carbon cycle and its relationship with global warming.
- The estimated global temperature response is a rough scaling based upon average IPCC AR4 (2007) model sensitivity to atmospheric CO2.
- Students can adjust CO2 emissions from fossil fuels and land use (sources) and uptake from oceans and land (sinks).
- Comments from expert scientist: A one-of-a-kind resource that I use frequently in graduate and undergrad teaching, teacher training, and K-gray outreach. An essential tool for teaching climate science, climate policy, scenario development and integrated assessment.
About the Pedagogy
- Excellent graphic that shows changes in the carbon cycle given different scenarios of fossil fuel use in the future.
- Students use the interactive as a tool to predict what temperature conditions on Earth will be given different levels of carbon released into the atmosphere.
- Shows the complexities of climate change and the usefulness and limitations of modeling.
Technical Details/Ease of Use
- The teacher may need to explain to students that they must select a button under sources or sinks before they can manipulate the graph on the left.
- Good introductory material on home page http://carboncycle.aos.wisc.edu/. Easy to use and analyze the results.
Next Generation Science Standards See how this Simulation/Interactive supports:
Performance Expectations: 2
HS-ESS2-6: Develop a quantitative model to describe the cycling of carbon among the hydrosphere, atmosphere, geosphere, and biosphere.
HS-ESS3-6: Use a computational representation to illustrate the relationships among Earth systems and how those relationships are being modified due to human activity.
Disciplinary Core Ideas: 7
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.
HS-ESS2.D2:Gradual atmospheric changes were due to plants and other organisms that captured carbon dioxide and released oxygen.
HS-ESS2.D3:Changes in the atmosphere due to human activity have increased carbon dioxide concentrations and thus affect climate.
HS-ESS2.D:Weather and Climate
HS-LS2.B3:Photosynthesis and cellular respiration are important components of the carbon cycle, in which carbon is exchanged among the biosphere, atmosphere, oceans, and geosphere through chemical, physical, geological, and biological processes.
HS-PS3.D2:The main way that solar energy is captured and stored on Earth is through the complex chemical process known as photosynthesis.
HS-PS3.D:Energy in Chemical Processes
Cross Cutting Concepts: 2
HS-C2:Cause and effect
HS-C4:Systems and System Models
Science and Engineering Practices: 9
HS-P1.2:ask questions that arise from examining models or a theory, to clarify and/or seek additional information and relationships.
HS-P1.3:ask questions to determine relationships, including quantitative relationships, between independent and dependent variables
HS-P1.4:ask questions to clarify and refine a model, an explanation, or an engineering problem
HS-P1.5:Evaluate a question to determine if it is testable and relevant
HS-P1.6:Ask questions that can be investigated within the scope of the school laboratory, research facilities, or field (e.g., outdoor environment) with available resources and, when appropriate, frame a hypothesis based on a model or theory.
HS-P1.7:Ask and/or evaluate questions that challenge the premise(s) of an argument, the interpretation of a data set, or the suitability of a design.
HS-P2.3:Develop, revise, and/or use a model based on evidence to illustrate and/or predict the relationships between systems or between components of a system
HS-P2.6:Develop and/or use a model (including mathematical and computational) to generate data to support explanations, predict phenomena, analyze systems, and/or solve problems.
HS-P4.1:Analyze data using tools, technologies, and/or models (e.g., computational, mathematical) in order to make valid and reliable scientific claims or determine an optimal design solution.