WHY SHOULD WE CARE? AWAKENING MIDDLE AND HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS TO THE REALITY OF CLIMATE CHANGE
What if teachers better understood vital components of Earth’s climate system and were able to impart his understanding to their students? What if students based their responses to the information taught not on emotion, but on a deeper understanding of the forces driving climate change, their analysis of the scientific evidence and in the context of earth system science?
This last year as a Middle School science teacher, I was given the opportunity to use a new trial curriculum currently in development for TERC’s EarthLabs collection to awaken those brains and assist my students in making personal lifestyle choices based on what they had learned. In addition, with support from TERC and The University of Texas Institute for Geophysics I joined others to begin training other teachers on how to implement this curriculum in their classrooms to expose their students to our changing climate.
In my presentation, I will give you (1) a glimpse into the challenges faced by today’s science teachers in communicating the complicated, but ever-deepening understanding of the linkages between natural and human-driven factors on climate; (2) introduce you to a new module in the EarthLabs curriculum designed to expose teachers and students to global scientific climate data and instrumentation; and (3) illustrate how student worldviews are changed though exposure to the latest in scientific discovery and understanding.