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Global Atmospheric Change

Author(s): Nancy P. Moreno, PhD., Barbara Z. Tharp, MS, and Judith Dresden, MS.
Global Atmospheric Change

© Frameangel.

Physical Science, Life Science, Environment, and Health

Students investigate different sources of energy and how they can affect the atmosphere and global ecology. (11 activities) Student pages are provided in English and in Spanish.

The Science of Global Atmospheric Change Teacher's Guide is a complete set of science lessons, with pre- and post-assessments, that enable students to explore what visible light is made of, characteristics of Earth's atmosphere, fossil fuels and the carbon cycle, combustion, food conversion to energy, skin protection, using heat from the sun, the greenhouse effect, and how climate affects how we live in different parts of the world. This guide provides the following inquiry-based activities:

  1. Earth’s Energy Sources: Pre-assessment

  2. Rainbow in the Room: What is visible light made of?

  3. Modeling Earth’s Atmosphere: What are the characteristics of Earth’s atmosphere?

  4. Fossil Fuels and the Carbon Cycle: Where are fossil fuels and how do we find them?

  5. Finding the Carbon in Sugar: What happens when something burns?

  6. Fuel for Living Things: What happens when living things eat food?

  7. Measuring and Protecting Skin: How much skin does a person have and why is it important?

  8. Using Heat from the Sun: How can we detect and use energy from the sun?

  9. Greenhouse S’Mores: Do different substances absorb and trap heat differently?

  10. People and Climate: How does climate affect how we live?

  11. Global Atmospheric Change: How is the atmosphere important for human health?

The guide also is designed to be used with integrated components of the Global Atmospheric Change unit: Mr. Slaptail's Curious Contraption (storybook), Explorations: Global Change (student magazine), and two supplements: The Reading Link and The Math Link (language arts and mathematics supplemental activities related to the storybook).

Although the activities are most appropriate for use with students in grades 3–5, the lessons are easily adaptable for other grade levels. The guide is also available in print format.

Download: The Science of Global Atmospheric Change

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Funded by the following grant(s)

National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, NIH

National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, NIH

My Health My World: National Dissemination
Grant Number: 5R25ES009259
The Environment as a Context for Opportunities in Schools
Grant Number: 5R25ES010698, R25ES06932