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Climate Wisconsin: Extreme Heat

Wisconsin Educational Communications Board, Climate Wisconsin

This short video addresses the effects of heat waves on human populations, with African American residents of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, as the visual subjects. The narrative is done by a young spoken- word artist.

Video length: 2:46 minutes.

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, 1 Cross Cutting Concept
High School: 2 Disciplinary Core Ideas, 1 Cross Cutting Concept

Climate Literacy
About Teaching Climate Literacy

Increased extreme weather events due to climate change
About Teaching Principle 7
Other materials addressing 7c
Human health and well-being will be affected to different degrees from the impacts from climate change
About Teaching Principle 7
Other materials addressing 7f

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

  • Suggestions for using the video in the classroom are listed below the video. Further teaching ideas are on climatewisconsin.org website, which is quite comprehensive.

About the Science

  • This video uses images, music, and poetry to describe the impacts of extreme heat on an urban community.
  • Science facts are interjected into the narrative.
  • An essay on the website provides additional background information.
  • Urban environments can exacerbate the health effects of heat waves. Heat waves affect different population groups unevenly. Thus heat waves are a climate problem as well as a public health problem.
  • Comments from expert scientist: Resource does well in highlighting geographical differences in extreme heat conditions. Statement that frequency of extreme heat events in urban areas is untrue. Extreme heat events are typically larger in spatial scale than cities (i.e. they are more regional than that), so frequency is largely determined by large-scale atmospheric/oceanic processes.

About the Pedagogy

  • This is a spoken-word media piece that mingles art and science in a way that successfully communicates important information in a compelling fashion.
  • Students of color will likely be able to identify themselves with the main characters.
  • There are some additional education resources as well as teaching tips available on the climatewisconsin.org website.

Technical Details/Ease of Use

  • The resolution may be be suitable for classroom projection.

Next Generation Science Standards See how this Video supports:

Middle School

Disciplinary Core Ideas: 2

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.

MS-ESS3.D1:Human activities, such as the release of greenhouse gases from burning fossil fuels, are major factors in the current rise in Earth’s mean surface temperature (global warming). Reducing the level of climate change and reducing human vulnerability to whatever climate changes do occur depend on the understanding of climate science, engineering capabilities, and other kinds of knowledge, such as understanding of human behavior and on applying that knowledge wisely in decisions and activities.

Cross Cutting Concepts: 1


MS-C1.2: Patterns in rates of change and other numerical relationships can provide information about natural and human designed systems

High School

Disciplinary Core Ideas: 2

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.D3:Changes in the atmosphere due to human activity have increased carbon dioxide concentrations and thus affect climate.

Cross Cutting Concepts: 1

Cause and effect

HS-C2.2:Cause and effect relationships can be suggested and predicted for complex natural and human designed systems by examining what is known about smaller scale mechanisms within the system.

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