National Research Council, The National Academies
Video length: 2:46 min.Learn more about Teaching Climate Literacy and Energy Awareness»
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Teaching Tips | Science | Pedagogy |
- A good video to show at the beginning of a unit on climate change. May need to break video up into sections because the information is very dense.
- Students will need scaffolding.
- Teachers may want to start and stop video for students to interact with data sets and key ideas.
About the Science
- This short video looks at an alternative hypothesis for observed global warming - i.e., a change in solar energy output. Recent direct satellite observations show no net increase in the last 30 years, while indirect estimates based on sunspot frequencies in 20th century suggest a rise in solar activity in the first part of century and a fall in the last part. But these indirect measurements are not consistent with the direct ones. Furthermore, careful observations of the temperatures in different atmospheric layers show a warming in the lower troposphere and cooling in the higher stratosphere. This is indicative of increasing greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere and not a changing solar output.
- Comments from expert scientist: Shows the well-known relationship between solar output and global average temperature, and correlates this relationship with sunspot activity. Demonstrates solar output (via sunspot activity as a proxy) has not increased over the last 50 years and as such it can’t explain the increase in global average temperature.
About the Pedagogy
- There is an accompanying booklet http://nas-sites.org/americasclimatechoices/files/2012/06/19014_cvtx_R1.pdf that provides additional information.
- No teachers resources are provided.
- This video was produced for a general audience and not specifically for educational purposes.
Technical Details/Ease of Use
- The images and animations are state-of-the-art.
- Captions can be translated into other languages.
- Resolution of video can be changed.