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Navajo Elders' Observations on Climate Change

WGBH, Teachers' Domain

In this video segment, adapted from Navajo Technical College, two Navajo Elders speak about climate change and differences in the environment that they have observed.

Video length 2:41 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

Climate Literacy
About Teaching Climate Literacy

Observations are the foundation for understanding the climate system
About Teaching Principle 5
Other materials addressing 5b
Increased extreme weather events due to climate change
About Teaching Principle 7
Other materials addressing 7c
Ecosystems on land and in the ocean have been and will continue to be disturbed by climate change
About Teaching Principle 7
Other materials addressing 7e

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

  • As part of a unit on climate change, students could research observations by indigenous people from varied locations.

About the Science

  • The two Navajo Elders' observations include changes in the rainy season, more violent storms, and changes in the characteristics of both wind and snow. They describe the disappearance of some plants and express concern about how changes in climate are negatively affecting people and animals.
  • Comments from expert scientist: The video of the Navajo Elders is great. They are presenting their observations over time.

About the Pedagogy

  • A Background essay and discussion questions are provided.

Technical Details/Ease of Use

  • Grainy when viewed online in fullscreen. Best to download and watch on laptops.

Related URLs These related sites were noted by our reviewers but have not been reviewed by CLEAN

Entire series of this video collection found at: http://www.teachersdomain.org/special/nasawords/

Next Generation Science Standards See how this Video supports:

Middle School

Disciplinary Core Ideas: 3

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.C1:Human activities have significantly altered the biosphere, sometimes damaging or destroying natural habitats and causing the extinction of other species. But changes to Earth’s environments can have different impacts (negative and positive) for different living things.

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.

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