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Getting Started with the Climate Explorer Story Map

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

This is a simulation to explore how climate change will affect a specific region in the coming decades. Graphs and maps in The Climate Explorer help students understand past, present, and future climate projections for their location.

Learn more about Teaching Climate Literacy and Energy Awareness»

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

  • Tutorial is easy to follow and extensive with many examples.
  • The simulation is robust, the visuals are easy to understand, and the data bank is extensive (which may overwhelm students).
  • Teachers will need to provide instructional guidance for students to have a focused learning experience.

About the Content

  • For the contiguous United States, graphs and maps show projected conditions based on global climate model simulations used for the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.
  • Students can download credible scientific climate data on climate variables such as temperature, precipitation, and cooling/growing degree days on an annual or seasonal average.
  • Graphs and maps show projections for two possible futures: one in which humans reduce and stabilize global emissions of heat-trapping gases (labeled Lower emissions), and one in which we continue increasing emissions through the end of the 21st century (labeled Higher emissions).
  • Background material not included.
  • Resource developed in collaboration with expert scientists - no CLEAN expert science review was needed.

About the Pedagogy

  • Students explore several climate variables both historically and considering future predictions for their region.
  • Observing patterns, cause and effect, systems, systems interactions, predictions, modeling, observations, map reading and data analysis are all skills students will practice in this resource.
  • Tutorial is provided for students to learn how to use this climate explorer tool but teacher guidance is needed to provide students with structure and assessment questions.
  • Includes glossary of the vocabulary terms and tips to help students read the graphs.

Technical Details/Ease of Use

  • Requires high speed internet access to use the free online climate explorer tool.
  • Climate Explorer is designed to be widely accessible and compatible with the most popular current web browsers, including Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Internet Explorer.
  • Climate Explorer can be viewed on a desktop or laptop computer as well as on mobile devices such as tablets and smartphones devices.
Entered the Collection: March 2021 Last Reviewed: December 2020

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