Changing the Climate of your Climate Change Lessons

Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday 8:30am-11:30am Lindley: 123


Laura Rowan Hollister, Pitman High School
Ryan Hollister, Modesto Junior College
Robin Matthews, IPCC WGI Technical Support Unit
A phenomena-based, active learning experience for K-12 & intro level college instructors who teach climate change as part of their curriculum. Experience how to make cutting-edge climate data come to life in the classroom while also being given ample time for metacognition to make sense of the science.

Resources Link! (


This three-morning workshop will provide an "entry level for all" approach to broaden teachers' climate change content knowledge as well as expand content experts' pedagogical best-practices. The workshop will focus on using place-based climate phenomena to engage participants in active learning experiences that exemplify the three-dimensional learning of the NGSS. Each day will allow ample time for metacognition and whole-group discourse to make sense of the science and pedagogy used throughout the day's activities.

Workshop Program »

Target Audience

This workshop is designed for K-12 teachers and introductory college course instructors looking to implement place-based and active-learning strategies to help students make sense of climate data and its implications.


  • Participants will be able to address challenges teaching climate change and find approaches to address those challenges.
  • Participants will understand that the carbon cycle operates on large and small time scales and will understand why that knowledge is crucial for making sense of climate data.
  • Participants will know how ice core data and other proxy data are used to reconstruct and interpret the Earth's ancient climate (paleoclimate).
  • Participants will know how climate models are created and will know how accurate model predictions have been.
  • Participants will be exposed to the use of place-based climate data as a means of student engagement when studying recent changes in climate.
  • Participants will use data a models to make predictions about the future climate of local regions.
  • Participants will be able to create local solutions that might one day end anthropogenic climate change.
  • Participants will experience NGSS teaching strategies and will be given ample time for metacognition and collaborative discourse.


Each day will begin with an introduction and questions, followed by active learning of content. This will allow teachers to increase their own knowledge and understanding of climate data and climate change, as well as experience lessons they could share (with slight modification) in their own classes. Frequent opportunities for metacognition, discussion, and a look at the NGSS strategies being used to increase student engagement will be emphasized. Be ready to move and collaborate with others!

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