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Classroom and Lab Activities

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Subject: Atmospheric Science

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Climate Change and Atlantic Hurricanes: A GIS Inquiry part of Cutting Edge:Hurricanes-Climate Change Connection:Activities
Students make hypotheses about how hurricane numbers, locations, or intensities have been changing, and then use hurricane tracks, wind speed, barometric pressure, and dates to test their hypotheses.

Tropical Cyclones, Sea Surface Temperature, and Beyond part of Cutting Edge:Hurricanes-Climate Change Connection:Activities
The activity will use historical data of sea surface temperature and tropical cyclone origin and/or tracks to identify trends. Students use Arc GIS to explore projected SST changes and predict areas where tropical ...

Lab Activity: Earth's Energy Budget and the Greenhouse Effect part of Process of Science:Examples
"Earth's Energy Budget and the Greenhouse Effect" is a lab activity in which students use computers and scientific applications software to access, display, describe, analyze, and interpret global, climate-related data sets related to the earth's energy budget and the greenhouse effect.

Trace Gases: Stella II Mac and PC part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Mathematical and Statistical Models:Mathematical and Statistical Models Examples
This Stella model allows students to learn about chemical mass balance in the atmosphere and apply this to atmospheric chlorofluorocarbon and carbon dioxide concentrations. -

Energy Balance Climate Model: Stella Mac and PC part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Mathematical and Statistical Models:Mathematical and Statistical Models Examples
Students explore a Global Energy Balance Climate Model Using Stella II. Response of surface temperature to variations in solar input, atmospheric and surface albedo, atmospheric water vapor and carbon dioxide, ...

Rayleigh fractionation visualization part of Activities
A MS Excel spreadsheet gives an account of Rayleigh fractionation, the progressive removal of the heavier oxygen isotope as a moist air parcel moves from the subtropics to the high latitudes. This exercise is ...

Using Real Data from Ice Cores and Salt Cores to Interpret Paleoclimate part of Cutting Edge:Sedimentary Geology:Activities
The goals of this project are to engage sedimentary geology students in critical thinking about global warming. I present information about how ice cores and halite cores record past temperature data. Then, ...

The Lifestyle Project part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Experience-Based Environmental Projects
This three-week project challenges students to learn about environmental alternatives by modifying their own lifestyles. Throughout the project, students reduce their impacts on the environment by changing the way in which they live from day to day.

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Intro to Environmental Geology Writing Assignment part of Cutting Edge:Student Learning: Observing and Assessing:Activities with Rubrics
Students in an introductory environmental geology class research the Dust Bowl, analyze information and data and develop a written argument.

Climate: Global Warming part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Socratic Questioning:Examples
Detailed, annotated example of Socratic questioning for topics of climate change, global warming, and greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. -

Coral Bleaching: Making Our Oceans Whiter part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Role Playing:Examples
This lesson plan deals with coral reefs and the recent crisis of coral bleaching. It suggests that students engage in a role-playing debate about modifying human activity to protect reefs. -

Viewpoint on Causes of Global Warming - An Assignment Using Anonymous Electronic Peer Review With a Dropbox part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Peer Review:Examples
This is an anonymous electronic peer review exercise that utilizes a dropbox, where students detail and support their viewpoint on nonhuman-induced global warming. -

Mapping Coastal Vulnerability to Sea-Level Rise at Point Reyes National Seashore part of Pedagogy in Action:Partners:Spreadsheets Across the Curriculum:Geology of National Parks:Examples
Spreadsheets Across the Curriculum/Geology of National Parks module. Students work with a color-coded conditional-formatted spreadsheet map to work through a USGS report applying a coastal vulnerability index.

Daisyworld: Stella Mac or PC part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Mathematical and Statistical Models:Mathematical and Statistical Models Examples
After constructing a Stella model of Daisyworld students perform guided experiments to explore the behavior of Daisyworld to changes in model parameters and assumptions. -

Daisyworld: Interactive On-line PC and Mac part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Mathematical and Statistical Models:Mathematical and Statistical Models Examples
Students use a JAVA interface design by R.M. MacKay to explore the Daisy World model. The JAVA interface comes with a link to a 6-page student activity page in PDF format. -

Machines that change climate: Porsche 911 Turbo vs. Toyota Prius part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection
This problem illustrates how consumer decisions can influence carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere, how to make back-of-the-envelope calculations, and demonstrates the power of exponential growth.

What is the fate of CO2 produced by fossil fuel combustion? part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection
A box model is used to simulate the build up of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere during the industrial era and predict the future increase in atmospheric CO2 levels during the next century.

Using a Mass Balance Model to Understand Carbon Dioxide and its Connection to Global Warming part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection
Students explore the increase in atmospheric carbon dioxide over the past 40 years with an interactive on-line model.

Investigating the Effect of Warmer Temperatures on Hurricanes part of Cutting Edge:Hurricanes-Climate Change Connection:Activities
Students investigate the link between ocean temperatures and hurricane intensity, analyze instrumental and historical data and speculate on possible future changes.

Analyzing Hurricanes part of Cutting Edge:Hurricanes-Climate Change Connection:Activities
The exercise uses GIS to explore historical data on hurricanes (path, strength, name). Students identify trends in hurricane records, the impact of hurricanes on major U.S. cities, and how hurricanes change through ...