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Classroom and Lab Activities

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Action to Enhance Sustainability part of Integrate:Workshops:Systems, Society, Sustainability and the Geosciences:Activities
This assignment is a 10-hour, out-of-class project where each student designs and carries out an action plan to enhance sustainability. Students select from a large suite of alternative actions, most of which can be quantified for reductions in CO2 and energy consumption, as well as in dollar savings.

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How Cities Affect Their Local Climate part of Earth Exploration Toolbook:Are Our Cities Warming the Earth?
DATA: GLOBE Program Surface Temperature. TOOL: My World GIS. SUMMARY: Explore the urban heat island effect using student collected surface temperature data. Subset large datasets, buffer others, examine spatial relationships, and gather statistics to investigate temperature differences in urban and rural school sites.

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Incorporating Information Literacy into Climate Change Teaching part of Activities
This module contains 10 topics related to finding and evaluating scientific information related to climate change. The skills learned are transferable to any subject area. Each topic includes exercises.

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Ice Core Exercise part of Activities
This assignment (for upper-division/graduate students) provides exposure to ice core data, problem-solving to register data sets, technical challenges in data manipulation and statistics, and an opportunity to ...

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Modeling Glacier Erosion Through Time part of Activities
This lab could be adapted for an introductory geology course, upper division geomorphology course, or a climate change course. This activity is borrowed from John Harbor's paper in the Journal of Geoscience ...

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Simulation of international negotiations to reduce greenhouse gas emissions part of Activities
In order to convey how the international community is responding to climate change, students engage in a simulation of the international negotiation process. Participants learn first hand the interests of different ...

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Understanding the Carbon Cycle: A Jigsaw Approach part of Activities
In this "jigsaw" exercise, each student is assigned one of five geochemical processes in the carbon cycle to research, fully understand, and then explain to others in groups of five. At the end of class ...

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Exploring El Niño part of Cutting Edge:Courses:Sedimentary Geology:Sedimentology, Geomorphology, and Paleontology 2014:Activities
In this introductory-level lab activity, students first view a 20-minute portion of an informative video to learn about the operation of an array of moored buoys that is used to detect changes in the El Niño ...

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Global Warming in 5 Steps part of Cutting Edge:Courses:Oceanography:Activities
Scientists say the planet is warming because of human activities, namely the greenhouse effect from carbon dioxide released to the atmosphere when burning fossil fuels. But, how do we know? How do scientists know? ...

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Mapping a Local Dune Field and Estimating Paleowind Speed and Direction part of NAGT:Teaching Resources:Teaching in the Field:Field Trip Collection
Donald T. Rodbell, Union College Intended Audience: Undergraduate geomorphology course. Location: Pinebush dune field, eastern New York State (approximately 20 minutes from Union College campus). Summary: We visit ...

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Is There a Trend in Hurricane Number or Intensity? part of Cutting Edge:Topics:Hurricanes-Climate Change Connection:Activities
This lab guides students through an examination of the hurricane record to determine if there is a trend in hurricane intensity over the past 40 years and introduces some issues related to statistics and ...

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Radiocarbon dating project part of Cutting Edge:Topics:Rates and Time:Teaching Activities
This is an example of an activity used in a Quaternary Geochronology course, in which a small group of students (3-4) is tasked with transforming a set of activity measurements into radiocarbon ages and calibrated ...

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Modeling the carbon cycle of the anthropocene part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection
Students use an Excel sheet to complete forward and inverse models of changes in carbon distribution between atmosphere, ocean and the biosphere from 1751 to the present and several centuries into the future. The model is given as a mostly complete package, into which students input emissions data in various sensitivity tests.

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Atmospheric Carbon: Can We Offset the Increase? part of Cutting Edge:Courses:Oceanography:Activities
This activity lets students discover first hand how the big issues in climate change – here, the increase in atmospheric CO2 and the utility of carbon offsets – can be understood through measurement, ...

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Teaching Climate Science by Studying Misinformation part of Activities
Students critically evaluate the arguments about climate change raised in a climate contrarian newspaper op-ed. This strengthens student critical thinking and content knowledge.

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Using NOAA NCDC Pollen Database to study vegetation history part of Activities
This lab exercise uses SiteSeer, a public domain software available through NOAA/NCDC, to learn how to retrieve and query the NOAA NCDC pollen database. Students first work through a set of simple exercises that ...

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Vostok Ice Core: Excel (Mac or PC) part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Mathematical and Statistical Models:Mathematical and Statistical Models Examples
Students use Excel to graph and analyze Vostok ice core data (160,000 years of Ice core data from Vostok Station). Data includes ice age, ice depth, carbon dioxide, methane, dust, and deuterium isotope relative ...

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Gold Star Panel Review This activity received a gold star rating from a Panel Peer Review.
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Northwest Passage part of Cutting Edge:Enhance Your Teaching:Teaching Methods:Teaching with Google Earth:Examples
An investigation of changes in polar regions using Google Earth.

On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Collection This activity is part of the On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Teaching Activities collection.
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CLEAN Selected This activity has been selected for inclusion in the CLEAN collection.
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Abrupt climate change, greenhouse gases, and the bipolar see-saw part of Cutting Edge:Early Career:Previous Workshops:Workshop 2010:Teaching Activities
In this activity, students work with paleoclimate proxy data (d18O, CH4, CO2)from the Byrd and GISP2 ice cores. Students prepare a graph of paleoclimate data and use the graph to answer several questions about the ...

A Jigsaw Approach to the Weathering Thermostat Hypothesis part of CLEAN:Community:Teaching Materials
This activity is part of the community collection of teaching materials on climate and energy topics. These materials were submitted by faculty as part of the CLEAN Climate Workshop, held in June, 2011 and are not ...