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Classroom and Lab Activities for Teaching about Energy


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Poleward Heat Transport Jigsaw part of Cutting Edge:Hurricanes-Climate Change Connection:Activities
Based on great plate tectonic exercise by Sawyer et al. (2005 JGE), this small-group exercise with maps of data about earth's energy balance helps students visualize poleward heat transport.

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Carbon Footprint Exercise part of Cutting Edge:Climate Change:Activities
We designed a three-step assignment for students in introductory geoscience that asks them to calculate their carbon footprint during one specific week. The goal of the assignment is to increase student awareness ...

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Power Source part of Cutting Edge:Energy:Energy Activities
In this lesson-opening activity, students or groups are tasked to make concept sketches that track the source of electrical power as far back as they can conceive. The concept sketches reveal students' prior ...

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An integrated view of the Glendale Landscape part of Cutting Edge:Hydrogeology:Hydrogeology, Soils, Geochemistry 2013:Activities
Students work in groups to develop posters that communicate their concept of landscape following several field labs (soils, sediment analysis, river discharge, vegetation survey, aquatic life) at one location. They ...

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Confirmation of the IPCC Prediction re: Increased Storminess part of Cutting Edge:Topics:Hurricanes-Climate Change Connection:Activities
A two-part culminating activity for a meteorology/climatology unit in an Earth Science course centered upon data acquisition and analysis regarding the confirmation of the IPCC predicition regarding increased ...

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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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Student Lead Discussions: Articles from the Literature and Final Writing Assignment part of Cutting Edge:Topics:Hurricanes-Climate Change Connection:Activities
This is a two-stage assignment. The first stage is a student-led discussion of a set of closely related articles selected by the instructors from the climate change literature. The second stage is an 8-12 page ...

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Evaluating the Effects of Local Energy Resource Development part of Energy Activities
This is a semester-long, jigsaw project for a class of 20 to 25 students that has students work in teams to explore the effects of energy resource development on local water resources, economics and society.

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Energy and the Poor - Black Carbon in Developing Nations part of Cutting Edge:Energy:Energy Activities
In this activity, students will explore impacts of the use of wood, dung and charcoal in developing countries for fuel, producing black carbon. In-class discussion will generate a list of several broad topics, ...

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Exploring the Link between Hurricanes and Climate using GCM Results part of Cutting Edge:Topics:Hurricanes-Climate Change Connection:Activities
This activity requires students to examine global climate model output available online and consider the potential impact of global warming on tropical cyclone initiation and evolution. As a follow-up, students ...

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Campus Greenhouse Gas Emissions Inventory part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Campus-Based Learning:Examples
Students conduct a greenhouse gas emission inventory for their college or university. Students analyze findings and present information to the college or university community. -

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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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Energy Consumption Rates across the USA and the World part of Cutting Edge:Enhance Your Teaching:Teaching Methods:Teaching with Google Earth:Examples
A investigation of differences in rates and categories of energy use between countries and US states

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Forecasting Lake Effect Snow in Lake Superior region part of Cutting Edge:Topics:Hurricanes-Climate Change Connection:Activities
This exercise is designed to present the realistic problems of forecasting weather. Lake effect snows are hard to forecast because they depend on information that isn't part of the regular set of information ...

Hurricane Tracking part of Cutting Edge:Topics:Hurricanes-Climate Change Connection:Activities
This is a homework assignment that focuses student attention on ongoing hurricane/tropical storm development, often during the height of hurricane season. The students are directed to a web site (I like ...

Hurricane Investigation part of Cutting Edge:Topics:Hurricanes-Climate Change Connection:Activities
This is a simple homework assignment that will reinforce topics discussed in lecture as well as enabling students to search and analyze information on the web.

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 ...

Investigating the Effect of Warmer Temperatures on Hurricanes part of Cutting Edge:Topics: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.

Urban Environmental Excursions: Field trips to connect urban geology students with the world around them part of Cutting Edge:Enhance Your Teaching:Urban Geology:Activities
Environmentally-themed field trips in urban areas can stimulate student interest in geology and environmental science while providing curricular links to topics such as global warming, energy resources, water ...

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