GSA Connects 2021 in Portland, Oregon

Paper No. 183-12
Presentation Time: 4:30 PM


CARROLL STEWARD, Kimberly, PhD Candidate , 3246 S St, Lincoln, NE 68503-3239, FORBES, Cory, College of Education, University of Texas at Arlington, Arlington, TX 76019 and CHANDLER, Mark A., Center for Climate Systems Research, Columbia University, NASA/GISS, 2880 Broadway, New York, NE 10025

The past decade has seen increasing emphasis on promoting 'climate literacy,' particularly among students in formal K-16 science classrooms. It is undeniable that teachers play a critical role in cultivating these opportunities for students, especially in secondary science classrooms. Nevertheless, much of the prior climate education research has focused solely on students and student learning, and, as such, little is known about how teachers implement climate-focused curricular interventions and how these choices impact student learning. Here, we report findings from a concurrent mixed method, multiple-case study of four secondary science teachers' implementation of a new, NGSS-aligned, model-centric climate curriculum module grounded in the use of a data-driven, computer-based climate modeling tool - Easy Global Climate Model (EzGCM) and how these implementation strategies affect student outcomes in the dimensions of both epistemic and content knowledge. We employ multiple data sources, including video-recorded classroom observations, interviews, and instructional artifacts, including pre-/post-student assessments, and qualitative and quantitative analyses, to investigate how teachers' curriculum implementation changes students' knowledge growth. Our initial findings show that students significantly improved their overall pre-/post-assessment scores, t(390)=9.05, p=0.000. Additionally, significant improvements occurred in both in climate content, t(390)=8.53, p=0.000, and epistemic knowledge, t(390)=6.39, p=0.000. Furthermore, we present detailed single-case studies of each participating teacher to highlight enactment differences in how the teachers implemented the curriculum module and their reasoning for making observed instructional decisions. It is important to note that these findings are not meant to critique the enactment methods of teaching but rather to identify patterns between methods and student outcomes. It is our hope that this research sheds light on the design of secondary science learning environments by illustrating the varied ways in which teachers implement a climate-focused curriculum to support students' developing climate literacy and has important implications for the design of climate-focused curriculum.