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What is climate change? A middle school lesson plan.

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*Note: This lab activity was submitted to Ward's Science by a third party educator for the sole purpose of sharing content and ideas with other educators. Ward's Science is not affiliated with the author of this lesson plan. All product recommendations made by Ward's Science are suggestions for completion or extension of the activity or topics addressed, but are not required to complete the activity. Climate Change Toolkit: A Middle School Science Unit Recommended Grade Level: 8 Discipline: Earth/Environmental Science Topic: Climate Change Time Required: 13-Day Unit Submitted by: Karen McCabe Essential Question: What is climate change? National Science Standards Addressed: M.D.1 Structure of the earth system j. Global patterns of atmospheric movement influence local weather. Oceans have a major effect on climate, because water in the oceans holds a large amount of heat. H.D.1 Energy in the earth system d. Global climate is determined by energy transfer from the sun at and near the earth's surface. This energy transfer is influenced by dynamic processes such as cloud cover and the earth's rotation, and static conditions such as the position of mountain ranges and oceans. Objective: Students will examine climate change from various perspectives and utilize primary resources to conduct research. Teacher Notes: To open the climate change discussion, I have compiled a series of short videos which highlight the different viewpoints regarding climate change. The first one is a National Geographic production. It is an excellent example of a balanced approach to explaining climate change. The second one was made by a group called voteclimate.org. It is alarming and will evoke an emotional response in viewers. The last one was produced by the Heritage Foundation. This group acts as a "front man" for big oil and gas companies like Koch and Exxon/Mobile. Students should be able to discern a difference in tone between the three videos and ultimately identify the purpose and intended audience for each of them. Students will complete accompanying handout while viewing videos. Classroom discussion will follow videos. Students will also complete a climate change questionnaire. Students will interview at least two people (one classmate and one parent/guardian). Data from interviews will be compiled and discussed. A Way Forward: Facing Climate Change https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pAA7FEqYTjA Vote Climate Info. Video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PSip5sJQ0ak

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