Will Steger Foundation/Climate Generation
Activity length: Three 50-minute periodsLearn more about Teaching Climate Literacy and Energy Awareness»
See how this Activity supports the Next Generation Science Standards»
Middle School: 2 Disciplinary Core Ideas, 5 Science and Engineering Practices
High School: 2 Disciplinary Core Ideas, 4 Science and Engineering Practices
Large activity could be used for 5th grade, too.
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Teaching Tips | Science | Pedagogy |
- The large-group activity could be completed indoors (gym, cafeteria) if weather or logistics does not permit an outdoor activity.
- The research that the students are required to do as far as their claim, evidence and reasoning (CER), would do well in collaboration with school's librarian/media specialist.
About the Science
- Activity addresses factors that are causing the climate to change and distinguishes between natural and human causes.
Comments from expert scientist:
- breaks down the reason why climate change happens in the first place (humans produce GHG, suns radiation gets trapped)
- Love the tagging game!!!
This definition is may be confusing and should be clarified in class:
greenhouse effect: A phenomenon in which the atmosphere of a planet traps radiation emitted by its sun, caused by gases such as carbon dioxide, water vapor, and methane that allow incoming sunlight to pass through but retain heat radiated back from the planet’s surface.
About the Pedagogy
- Terrific kinesthetic modeling of the greenhouse effect. The game looks complex but really isn't.
- Activity teaches scientific principles while having fun at the same time.
Technical Details/Ease of Use
- Link for video for Lesson 2 is here: http://www.climategen.org/ngconline/.
- Educators may need to find additional resources as background reading if unfamiliar with common models of climate change.
Next Generation Science Standards See how this Activity supports:
Disciplinary Core Ideas: 2
MS-ESS3.C2:Typically as human populations and per-capita consumption of natural resources increase, so do the negative impacts on Earth unless the activities and technologies involved are engineered otherwise.
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.
Science and Engineering Practices: 5
MS-P1.3:Ask questions to determine relationships between independent and dependent variables and relationships in models.
MS-P2.5:Develop and/or use a model to predict and/or describe phenomena.
MS-P4.4:Analyze and interpret data to provide evidence for phenomena.
MS-P6.3:Construct a scientific explanation based on valid and reliable evidence obtained from sources (including the students’ own experiments) and the assumption that theories and laws that describe the natural world operate today as they did in the past and will continue to do so in the future.
MS-P7.3:Construct, use, and/or present an oral and written argument supported by empirical evidence and scientific reasoning to support or refute an explanation or a model for a phenomenon or a solution to a problem.
Disciplinary Core Ideas: 2
HS-ESS3.C2:Scientists and engineers can make major contributions by developing technologies that produce less pollution and waste and that preclude ecosystem degradation.
HS-ESS3.D1:Though the magnitudes of human impacts are greater than they have ever been, so too are human abilities to model, predict, and manage current and future impacts.
Science and Engineering Practices: 4
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-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.
HS-P6.2:Construct and revise an explanation based on valid and reliable evidence obtained from a variety of sources (including students’ own investigations, models, theories, simulations, peer review) and the assumption that theories and laws that describe the natural world operate today as they did in the past and will continue to do so in the future.
HS-P7.5:Make and defend a claim based on evidence about the natural world or the effectiveness of a design solution that reflects scientific knowledge and student-generated evidence.