Parks Climate Challenge

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External Resources
Though the Parks Climate Challenge website should be your first stop for finding information for lesson plans and hands-on activities, don’t let it be your only tool. Below you will find websites that contain additional lesson plans and workshops for teachers, as well as online interactive, climate-based games for students. To help determine which site will be most beneficial for your needs, the resources are categorized under the headings below. Also note the descriptive key that helps further describe the resources. Relevant characters appear at the end of each website description.

Categories
Background Science and Basics of Climate Change
Curriculum and Lesson Plans
Activities
Multi-Media
Region or Topic Specific
Blogs

Descriptive Key
Climate Change Basics & Vocabulary: CCB&V
Climate Change Lesson Plans: CCLP
Graphs & Charts: G&C
Project Examples: PE
Teacher Training Workshops: TTW
Interactive Focused Games: IFG
Climate Change Research: CCR
Blog


Background Science and Basics of Climate Change

Ask Dr. Global Change
An interactive website where students can ask and receive answers to climate change questions with links and other information explaining the answers. Not only can students ask new questions but all of the previous questions and answers are archived.
CCR G&C CCB&V

Environmental Literacy Council
Discusses seven overarching concepts about climate change. Within each section, a diagram and description is given about what is occurring as well as a “recommended resources” and “for the classroom” section that includes quizzes and lesson plans for teachers on the topic.
CCR PE G&C CCLP CCB&V

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
Hosts many educational activities and projects. Not only is the site student friendly, with online games and projects, but it also contains a “teachers center” where teachers can find links for awards, grants, workshops, and conferences that they can be a part of that are hosted and funded by the EPA.
CCR IFG TTW PE G&C CCLP CCB&V

Global and Regional Climate Change
Offers basic facts about climate change, data and observations, climate modeling, and global and regional descriptions on how climate change is affecting the world around us. CCR G&C CCB&V

Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)
Offers a wide arrange of graphs and charts that can be downloaded for presentations. This website also offers a tremendous glossary of basic climate change terms.
CCR G&C CCB&V

National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)
Offers displays of daily earth images focusing on different global effects, has topical natural disaster articles, a climate reel video section, and also has as an interactive kid’s page that includes games for students and resource links for teachers.

National Park Service Climate Change Response Program
Offers a basic overview of climate change coupled with additional resources for those wishing to seek more information about climate change. The site also discusses ways that climate change is currently affecting the national parks, people, and planet as well as ways in which to reduce the impact.
CCR G&C CCB&V

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
Offers up to date research about the most topical climate change discussions. The “Climate Watch” section hosts research papers and graphs written by scientist and there is an extremely user friendly teacher and student section that contains downloadable fact sheets and games.
CCR IFG PE G&C CCLP CCB&V

PBS News Hour: The Global Warming Debate
Lists current events relating to climate change and includes political aspects of climate change.
CCR

Skeptical Science
Offers interesting graphs and diagrams that explain the basic processes of climate change and also offer a free downloadable guide to validating climate change. This guide goes through the main arguments that attempt to falsify the existence of climate change and then uses science to prove why such statements are incorrect.  
CCR G&C CCB&V

Union of Concerned Scientists
Offers research conducted by scientists, facts about regional areas being affected by climate change, and ideas on how to become more environmentally friendly. This site also offers a list of organizations that already have programs that combat climate change that students and teachers can become involved with.
CCR PE G&C CCB&V

United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Climate Change Education for Sustainable Development
Offers up to date climate change news stories as well as a downloadable booklet that details activities and projects that students can be a part of. This site also offers an online resources section that contains case studies, multimedia materials, research documents, pedagogical resources, and upcoming events that UNESCO is sponsoring.
CCR TTW PE G&C CCLP CCB&V

United States Forest Service Climate Change Resource Center
Notable for its great base knowledge for climate change understanding and “tools” or ways of calculating climate change from an online carbon estimator to a tree carbon calculator. Video lectures, current projects and case studies, and a resource library that has recommended readings, fact sheets, briefs, newsletters, and web links that teachers can download can also be found within this site.
CCR TTW PE G&C CCLP CCB&V

United States Global Change Research Program
Includes a climate literacy guide, grant opportunities for educators, and a wildlife and wetlands toolkit for the classroom.
TTW PE CCLP CCB&V

Window to the Universe
Describes the overall climate change story by describing the key points of climate change awareness in a question and answer format. The site also offers a teachers’ section that lists web seminars, student activities, workshops, scientist tours, online courses for students, and scientific research.
CCR TTW PE G&C CCLP CCB&V

Yale University
Has an expansive environmental research section that contains current research conducted by Yale professors and graduate students.
CCR


Curriculum and Lesson Plans

Action Science
Contains peer-edited lesson plans about biodiversity, biotechnology, evolution, environment, genomics, and new frontiers. This site is beneficial because it allows teachers to post lesson plans that they have completed, and also post their questions and comments on how to make the lesson plans even more effective.
PE G&C CCLP

American Museum of Natural History
Has an educator’s guide to climate change as well as several guides for furthering teacher understanding.
CCR PE G&C CCLP CCB&V

Educators Bridge
Offers different resources for elementary, middle, and high school students including both teacher and student workshops, a suggested reading section, and lesson plans and experiments.  CCR PE G&C CCLP CCB&V

Facing the Future
Offers downloadable curriculum about climate change specific to grade level. There are “fast facts” as well as examples of teachers currently using the curriculum and webinars for those who wish to learn more about how to use the curriculum.
IFG TTW PE G&C CCLP CCB&V

For Teens Climate Classroom
Contains several three hour lesson plans designed for high school students that incorporate short videos for students to watch and discuss. Each lesson plan is coupled with optional quizzes and volunteer student outreach projects.
IFG PE G&C CCLP CCB&V

Global Warming Facts for the Future
Takes an interactive step by step display of climate change with well formatted fact sheets that include clear diagrams on the green house effect, carbon cycle, causes for change, past change, predicted change, and the impacts and responses to climate change. This site also has web quests for students and accompanying guides for teachers.
CCR PE G&C CCLP IFG CCB&V

National Academics of Science
Gives interesting project ideas, lesson plans, web resources, and outreach programs for grades k-5, 6-8, and 9-12.  
CCR PE G&C CCLP CCB&V

National Environment Education Week
Has an extensive curricula library complete with a quiz, webinar, and service learning project section.
IFG TTW PE G&C CCLP CCB&V

Science Education Resource Center at Carleton College
Includes a list of materials and activities for teaching climate change as well as information regarding upcoming workshops and ideas from previous workshops. There are lesson plans, discussions on different approaches to teaching climate change, and an extensive paper and visual resource library supporting each approach.
CCR TTW PE G&C CCLP CCB&V

Teaching Resources for Educational Excellence
Has an extensive list of different educational websites. Each website is coupled with a brief synopsis about what the website contains. It is a great resource for finding additional lesson plans and activity ideas.
TTW-PE CCLP

United States Geological Survey Education
Has lesson plans for grades K-6, 7-12, and undergraduates that include teaching modules, classroom activities, computer lab activities, and the predicted cost of supplies for all of the activities listed. The website has a “media section” that includes YouTube videos, podcasts on varying topics, and the latest facts about current biological happenings.
CCR TTW PE G&C CCLP CCB&V


Activities

Byrd Polar Research Center Climate Model Simulation
Offers a classroom simulation discussion of the causes and effects of climate change. Each section of the online simulation is broken into key parts of climate change education so that teachers and students can choose the sections that would be most beneficial to listen to and watch.
PE G&C CCLP CCB&V

Cool School Challenge
Offers ideas and educational plans for teachers through their program in which students are given a simple carbon calculator that shows them all of the different places that they could be reducing their consumption of resources. This site also includes games and other online activities for students and additional teacher resources including workshops.
CCR TTW IFG PE G&C CCLP CCB&V

Earth Hour
Contains a “broadcast yourself” link that shows several different ways that students can become more involved in climate change including educational packets and online games that teach the importance of climate change.
IFG PE G&C

Energized Learning
Has an interactive self and school CO2 audit activity to test energy use. The site also offers accompanying lesson plans to go with the audit as well as other project ideas for students. 
CCR PE G&C CCLP CCB&V

Environmental Health Student Portal
Has an experiment section that lists ideas for labs and projects for all age groups.
PE CCLP

Environmental Inquiry: Authentic Scientific Research for High School Students
Offers student projects in environmental sciences related to water, waste, toxicology, invasive species, gardening, and ecological monitoring. Also contains a “for teachers” and a “for students” section that presents additional research and project ideas geared towards both teachers and students. 

How to Smile; All the Best Science &Math Activities
Offers a student activity page complete with lesson plans, activity completion times, and key words and the over arching principles of the activity.  Not only does this site offer downloadable activity sheets but it also contains a video section that displays how different people have previously conducted each activity.
PE G&C CCLP CCB&V

My Garbology
Students are asked to identify which everyday item belongs in either the reuse, compost, recycle, or landfill bin. Upon choosing the correct bin, the student learns a fun fact about the bin chosen ultimately teaching them how to become more environmentally friendly in the disposing of their everyday items.

What is Your Favorite Carbon Calculator?
Lists the main carbon calculators found online and gives a brief description of what each carbon calculator offers as well as when to use each one.
Blog  CCR

Princeton University Stabilization Wedges
This is an excellent activity for older students developed by Princeton University’s Caron Mitigation Initiative that introduces students to a simple framework for understanding both the carbon emissions cuts needed to avoid dramatic climate change and the tools already available to do so.
CCR G&C CCLP CCB&V

Real Climate
Offers an interesting online climate change teaching style in which the web-user can pick the level of climate knowledge they feel comfortable with, making the interface more user-friendly. The website also offers up-to-date information on environmental policies and scientific graphs.
CCR G&C CCB&V

Virtual Courseware for Earth and Environmental Sciences
Includes directions for in-class demonstrations with subsequent online activities and quizzes to test learning. The site also offers students assessment programs where students must take an exam at the end of doing several online activities to test their understanding of climate change.
CCR IFG PE G&C CCLP CCB&V


Multi-Media

All Visualization Projects
Has simulations of global precipitation and clouds, drought conditions, climate change, cloud fraction, and wind.
CCR G&C

Chem Connections Program
Offers downloadable graphs and diagrams that display the trends of climate change.
CCR G&C CCB&V

Exploring Earth Visualizations
Includes global animations of different perspectives of the earth such as the current water vapor index, earthquake count, and sea surface temperature and offers many other interesting graphs and other visuals that are downloadable.
CCR G&C

Facing Climate Change
Gives a multimedia approach to climate change through photographs coupled with stories of humans impacted by climate change.
G&C

Gap Minder
Uses animated graphs to show the change of a country’s amount of wealth and life expectancy from the 1800s to the present in relation to other countries. There are also downloadable interactive presentations, power points, handouts, and lesson plans that teachers can use.
G&C CCLP CCB&V CCR

Global Climate Change Research Explorer
Has great global maps and graphs relating to the atmosphere, hydrosphere, cyrosphere, and biosphere. Each map and graph displays and discusses global effects related to emitting emissions into the atmosphere.
CCR G&C

National Science Digital Library
Contains podcasts and digital copies of climate books. Each climate book is accompanied by an indicator that states the appropriate age group for each book.
CCR CCB&V

Teachers Domain: Digital Media for the Classroom and Professional Development
Displays a series of short videos discussing different causes and effects of climate change. Each video is accompanied with discussion questions for both before and after the viewing.
IFG PE CCLP CCB&V

The Climate Project
Contains short videos on various climate change issues. This site also has a blog that shows different climate change projects taking place across the country. G&C

World Mapper
Contains interesting maps distorted to display the world’s total consumption of resources relative to the size of the country that is consuming. In addition to the visual component, each map is paired with a detailed explanation of what is occurring in each map and why. 
IFG G&C

World Resources Institute
Includes charts and figures on gas emissions both within the US and abroad and allows the viewer to compare both side by side.
CCR G&C

Young Voices on Climate Change
Offers movies and project ideas for both teachers and students on how to become more involved in climate change activities.
PE CCLP CCB&V


Region or Topic Specific

Audubon Birds and Climate Change: On the Move
Offers research conducted by the Audubon Society that tracks the changing habits of migratory birds and its correlation to climate change. 
CCR G&C

Climate Wisconsin: Stories from a State of Change
Offers multimedia stories about the different places and people that are being affected by climate change in the state of Wisconsin as well as what is being done and what can be done to mitigate the problem.
CCR G&C CCB&V

Impacts of Climate Change on the Pacific Northwest
Displays research conducted by professors and graduate students at the University of Washington with regards to the climate change effects that can and will be seen in the Pacific Northwest. Also offers a brief overview on the basic ideas of climate change.
CCR G&C CCB&V

Monterey Bay Aquarium
Offers information regarding how climate change is affecting the ocean environment by discussing why oceans are changing, what people are currently doing to help the oceans, and ideas as to what you can do to help protect the oceans.

National Phenology Network
Offers a guide to observing plants and animals as well as a list of current projects, presentations, podcasts, and media materials available to teachers. Not only is this site full of research and advice with regards to the study of plant and animal life but it also contains downloadable maps and visualizations and an educator’s guide to climate change which includes lesson plans, activity guides, syllabuses, and project design plans.
CCR TTW PE G&C CCLP CCB&V

National Parks In Peril
Offers research conducted by the Natural Resources Defense Council regarding the most at risk national parks. Also offers additional videos and visualizations that explain the climate change related problems occurring in national parks.
CCR PE G&C CCB&V

National Sea Grant Library
Offers online publication searches regarding marina, aquaculture, habitat restoration, and education on sea life. CCR G&C


Blogs

Climate Central Blog
Has current and archived blogs about climate change topics from climate modeling to energy policy.
Blog CCR G&C

Climate 411 Blog
Is the voice of the experts at Environmental Defense Fund, providing plain-English explanations of climate change science, technology, policy, and news.  
Blog G&C CCB&V

Climate Feedback: The Climate Nature Blog
Hosted by Nature Publishing Group to facilitate lively and informative discussion on the science and wider implications of global warming. The blog aims to be a forum for debate and commentary on climate science in the Nature Climate Change journal and in the world at large.
Blog CCR G&C CCB&V

Dot Earth Blog
Examines efforts to balance human affairs with the planet’s limits. Dot Earth tracks relevant developments from suburbia to Siberia. The blog is an interactive exploration of trends and ideas with readers and experts.
Blog G&C

Pew Center on Global Climate Change
Presents ideas and insights from the Pew Center on Global Climate Change and its experts on topics critical to the climate conversation. These topics include domestic and international policy, climate science, low-carbon technology, economics, corporate strategies to address climate change, and communicating these issues to policymakers and the public. The bloggers include policy analysts, scientists, economists, and communication specialists , all of whom are working to advance solutions to our climate and energy challenge.
CCR G&C CCB&V Blog

The Green Life
The Sierra Club publishes this blog, which includes recommendations on books that foster a sense of environmental awareness in children and young adults.
Blog

 

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