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SMD Forum - Primary:
Earth Science  
Instructional Strategies:
Cues, questions, and advanced organizers  
Educational Level:
Middle school  
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This curriculum uses an inquiry-based Earth system science approach, and leverages Project BudBurst, a citizen science phenology project, to engage students in authentic research on plant and ecosystem responses to climate change. Students collect... (View More)

The emphasis of this lesson is deepening students' understanding of how and why we measure precipitation across the globe. Students will look at NASA Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) data gathered during hurricanes and how this data can... (View More)

In this problem-based data analysis activity, students identify trends and make predictions about the possible influence of climatic factors and vegetative growth on macro invertebrates. Step-by-step instructions for use of the MY NASA DATA Live... (View More)

In this data analysis activity, Students will use longwave radiation data to determine whether the climate has changed in Portland, Oregon over a 20 year time span. This lesson offers two options: plotting data from Portland provided by the teacher,... (View More)

In this data analysis activity, students compare near surface temperature at the time of the solstices in two different hemispheres, and see how the tilt of the Earth's axis in relationship to the Sun contributes to temperature differences across... (View More)

Keywords: Tilt; Earth axis; Solstice
Audience: Middle school, High school
Materials Cost: Free per student

Students examine CERES radiation data to understand how the Earth's tilt causes seasonal differences in incoming solar energy, and to explore how clouds, deserts and ice modulate the reflection of energy from the Sun. The investigation is conducted... (View More)

In this lesson, students investigate the relationship between precipitation, surface temperature and vegetation for four geographic locations. Students will download graphs of each of the three system components (vegetative index, surface... (View More)

Audience: Middle school
Materials Cost: Free

How effective would solar cells be in any particular area of the United States? In this activity, students answer that question by analyzing graphs of incoming solar radiation. Students will download two solar radiation graphs, one based on latitude... (View More)

Audience: Middle school, High school
Materials Cost: Free

These two hands-on labs are about the role of temperature and salinity in governing the density of seawater, a major factor controlling the ocean's vertical movements and layered circulation. In the first activity students work in groups to... (View More)

The purpose of this investigation is to understand the change that takes place when water condenses from a gas to a liquid, and how a change in pressure affects this transformation. Materials needed for the experiment include a large (2L) soda... (View More)

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