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Climate Education for K-12


Found in: science; preK-2, 3-5, 6-8, 9-12

Climate Education for K-12 is a climate and weather resource for teachers. Each webpage provides and links to the relevant National Science Education Standards. Many pages include classroom activities. This North Carolina State University website pays special attention to the Southeast.

Background and Basics distinguishes between climate and weather, explains the effects of tilt and latitude, and explores atmospheric properties, energy transfer, the atmosphere, weather patterns and forces, water cycle, severe weather, and measuring weather and climate. For example, one section under energy transfer, Albedo, explains how surface reflectivity affects temperature and creates the urban heat island effect. An associated activity, What Factors Impact a Greenhouse?, asks students to build soda bottle experimental chambers to explore factors that determine temperature.

Climate Variability covers circulations, climate patterns in the Southeast, and drought and heat.

Climate Change covers vegetation’s role in climate and weather, greenhouse gasses, and the causes of climate change.

Greenhouse Effect offers two activities:

  • What Is a Greenhouse?, where students become familiar with how a greenhouse retains heat by building simple models;
  • Trees and Carbon ( PDF, 333KB, 13 pg.), which assists students in understaning the relationship between trees and carbon dioxide level.

 Resources include links to a complete List of Activities, North Carolina Essential Standards, the National Center for Case Study Teaching in Science, a source of case studies for case studies for middle school and above, and more.

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