Climate Lesson Update – April 2015

Letter to Climate Change Educators

Calling all formal and informal educators! Join us for our 10th annual Summer Institute for Climate Change Education. You will hear from Frank Niepold, Will Steger, Ben Santer, and other experts in climate science and climate change education. We also have some special tracks to offer.

For our informal educators, Climate Generation is partnering with the National Network for Ocean and Climate Change Interpretation (NNOCCI) to offer a track specifically for interpreters and informal educators. This track will allow attendees to learn basic climate science principles, gain confidence in their ability to overcome barriers to interpreting climate change issues, and connect with a larger network of interpreters and scientists.

Formal educators will engage in hands-on activities to be used in the classroom, learn how CG’s curriculum supports language arts, science, and social studies standards, and have the opportunity to pilot our newest curriculum, Next Generation Climate.

Click here to see an agenda, dates, and other opportunities during the Institute.
Kristen Poppleton & Jenna Totz

What we’re reading

Climate Change: Discover How It Impacts Spaceship Earth

Do you spend a lot of time outdoors? Do you think it helps you behave in a more ‘green’ way?  A new study looks to find a link between actually experiencing the natural world, and behaving in a sustainable way.

Stories from the Field

When you think about Minnesota, what does it mean to you? How do you think climate change is impacting the Land of 10,000 Lakes? Climate Generation invites you to share your climate story. Your submission may be featured on Climate Generation’s website.

CG Happenings
We have exciting news!

Our next Climate Lesson Update is going to have a new flavor!  Don’t worry, it will still have the same great climate change education resources and links to all of the events and happenings.  We’d love to share more, but our lips are sealed.  Stay tuned April 29 for the big news!

Climate Minnesota launch

Climate Generation is excited to launch our first two Climate Minnesota Convenings in Bemidji and Crookston! Climate Minnesota: Local Stories, Community Solutions, is a two-year project funded through the Minnesota Environment and Natural Resources Trust Fund. Climate Minnesota responds to the urgent need to increase climate literacy and promote sustainable behavior change among Minnesotans by sharing the knowledge of local experts and the stories of individuals impacted by climate change. The project builds on the power of media for sharing stories and the importance of personal contact to reach a broader, more diverse audience.Next Generation Climate curriculum

We are busy working on another exciting project, a new curriculum. In September of 2015, Climate Generation will be releasing a brand new curriculum that uses the Next Generation Science Standards as a framework! Next Generation Climate supports Next Generation Science Standards Performance Expectations. Click here to read the outline and see the performance expectations that the curriculum with use.

Resources from the Climate Change Community
Last month, our Education Director, Kristen Poppleton partnered with NASA ESTEEM to present “Change Over Time: Investigate Climate Change Impacts in the Great Plains.” The National Climate Assessment (NCA), released in May of 2014, summarizes the impacts of climate change on the United States, touching on many disciplines: earth science, biology, human health, engineering, technology, economics, and policy. This webinar lets you explore the document with a lead NCA author, then learn about related educator resources with Kristen Poppleton. Discover how to bring the NCA and other resources into classroom lessons, engage students in data collection and analysis, share visualizations and citizen science projects.

Kid Wind
has some questions for you. Need help addressing NGSS energy and engineering standards?  Want to learn more about energy concepts, climate change and how renewable energy can make an impact? Do you want to learn how to use KidWind gear really well in your classroom?  Then KidWind has a summer training for you!




National Environmental Education Week (EE Week) is the nation’s largest celebration of environmental
education. It is held each spring around the time of Earth Day and inspires environmental learning and stewardship among K-12 students. This year, EE Week looks at how science can help us better understand the natural world with the theme Surrounded by Science, part of our continuing series on Greening STEM. Click here to read about the opportunities to celebrate and make a difference April 19-25.

The State of the Climate
is a collection of monthly summaries recapping climate-related occurrences on both a global and national scale.The globally averaged temperature over land and ocean surfaces for February 2015 was the second highest since record keeping began in 1880. This site also offers information on wildfires, tornadic activity, and snowpack across the US.
Hey Minnesota educators! The DNR has a great map that shows 2015 Lake Ice Out Dates. This map depicts lake ice out date reports received by the DNR and the MPCA for 2015. Educations can use this map to find out lake names, ice out data, ice out summary statistics, and a link for obtaining all available historical ice out dates for the lake. Lake Ice Out Data could be used in a science, geography, or math classroom. Click here to see the map.

We would like to share the Energy Literacy Video series and the Energy Literacy Quick Start Guide aligned with the Department of Energy’s (DOE), Energy Literacy: Essential Principles and Fundamental Concepts for Energy Education framework. The videos help to engage students on the 7 Principles of energy outlined in the Framework. There are also 7 sample Social Studies lessons to help teachers connect energy to political and economic factors, policy decisions, and quality of life. The video series is also available in Spanish and videos are found on YouTube. These videos and lessons work great with our Experience Energy curriculum!
We would like to introduce you to a new book aimed for 9 to 12 year old kids: Climate Change: Discover How It Impacts Spaceship Earth. It features 25 STEM activities and would be a great addition to any elementary school classroom. Young readers will examine real studies concerning planetary science, Arctic ice bubbles, and migratory patterns.





Perhaps you have heard about some of the great teaching resources recently developed by the NSF-funded InTeGrate Program Would you like to learn more about how you can use these activities in your classrooms?

Please join us for a free, one-hour webinar that will introduce you to classroom-ready modules that include: Climate of Change: Interactions and Feedbacks between Water, Air and Ice, Exploring Geoscience Methods, Humans’ Dependence on Earth’s Mineral Resources, and much more.

Moment of Inspiration

We’re stymied in solving the climate change problem because of an underlying challenge – a communication failure – rooted in language and ideology. Aspects of this failure include how scientists communicate, how some people confound the science with the solutions, and an active disinformation campaign designed to cast doubt. Resolution of the communication failure is essential, as it can unleash our ability to solve the climate problem.

Susan Joy Hassol is a climate change communicator, analyst, and author who’s been making climate science accessible for 25 years. Director of Climate Communication, she helps scientists communicate more effectively and provides information to policymakers, journalists, and others.

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