2. Common Core Standards Addressed
- Explain the environmental implications associated with the various methods of
obtaining, managing, and using energy resources.
- Explain the environmental consequences of the various methods of obtaining,
transforming and distributing energy.
- Explain the implications of the depletion of renewable and nonrenewable energy
resources and the importance of conservation.
3. Common Core Standards Addressed
- Outline how deforestation and the burning of fossil fuels (linked to increased
industrialization) contribute to global climate change.
- Explain how large-scale development contributes to regional changes in climate (i.e.
heat islands in large cities like NY, Chicago, Beijing, etc).
- Analyze actions that can be taken by humans on a local level, as well as on a larger
scale, to mitigate global climate change.
- Analyze how changes in global temperatures affect the biosphere (ex. agriculture,
species diversity, ecosystem balance).
- Explain how changes in atmospheric composition contribute to ocean acidification.
Analyze its effect on ocean life and its connection to global climate change.
- Explain how changes in global temperature have and will impact sea level.
- Analyze how sea level has been affected by other earth processes such as glaciations
and tectonic movements. Consider long- and short-term changes.
4. Goals for this presentation
1. Teachers will be able to use effective communication techniques to both
present material on climate change and to use as a resource for students.
2. Teachers will have research resources that they can use in classroom research
3. Teachers will have a framework lesson plan that they can use in their own
classrooms to have students explore climate solutions while using effective
5. Goals for this presentation
1. Teachers will have resources to host a UN Climate Negotiation Simulation and to
use the C-Roads simulator to test negotiations.
2. Teachers will develop assessments that empower students to use what they
learned from the lesson and share it
3. Teachers will have access to extra-curricular resources for students who want to
pursue more climate change solutions.
9. Climate Change: Connections and Solutions
What is it?
- A 2-week unit designed primarily for middle
- An in-depth look at the science behind climate
change, plus lessons that explore government
policy, social equity, and the economy.
What Outcomes can we expect?
- Students will be able to explain the science
behind the greenhouse effect and rising global
- Students will understand the impact of climate
change on living communities
- Students will learn solutions that involve personal
action, social action, and political action.
10. The Great Energy Debate Project
What is it?
- The Great Energy Debate is a project developed
by NEED (The National Energy Education
- The goal is for teams (or individual students) to
research one of 10 sources of energy and to
argue the merits of their energy source in a
debate style forum.
What Outcomes can we expect?
- The curriculum included in this PDF will teach
students to recognize the impacts of fossil fuels
and the economic reasons why fossil fuels
remain widely used, despite the damage they are
11. World Climate Negotiation Simulator
What is it?
- The World Climate Simulation is a role playing
exercise of the UN climate change negotiations.
- It is unique in that it uses an interactive computer
model to rapidly analyze the results of the mock-
negotiations during the event.
What Outcomes can we expect?
- Students build awareness of the political
complexities of climate change negotiations
- Students learn the importance of capping
emissions as soon as possible.
- Students become invested in the political
process surrounding climate change.
13. Assessment Ideas to stimulate
Write a letter to your state or
- Have students research
climate change policies like
the Energy Innovation and
Carbon Dividend Act and
the Green New Deal and
write a letter to their
legislator urging to take
Create a YouTube video about the
need for action.
- Have students script, film,
edit, and post videos about
the need for politicians and
businesses to take action to
tackle climate change. Like
the letters, these videos can
be sent directly to legislators.
14. Additional Pedagogical Resources
➢ Citizens’ Climate Lobby - National
nonprofit, nonpartisan organization aimed
at passing meaningful climate policies.
➢ Global Weirding - Katharine Hayhoe has
created dozens of videos on topics
associated with climate change.
➢ The Climate Change Playbook - 22
systems thinking games for more
effective communication about climate
➢ Merchants of Doubt - Watch the
documentary Merchants of Doubt and
use the free Curriculum Guide.
➢ Young Voices for the Planet - 5-minute
short PBS films to get ideas of what they
can do in their community or at school.
➢ Drawdown Eco Challenge - a fun and
social way to take measurable action on
the top solutions to global warming.
➢ C.L.E.A.N. - The Climate Literacy and
Energy Awareness Network has
educational resources for teachers and
15. Schools for Climate Action
Schools for Climate Action is a non-partisan, grassroots, youth-
adult campaign to empower school communities to speak up for
national climate action to protect current and future students. S4CA
works with school boards, student councils, PTA’s, and educators’
unions to pass climate action resolutions. The Schools for Climate
Action campaign grew out of Citizens’ Climate Lobby and practices
respectful, non-partisan engagement and advocacy. It was started
by teachers, students, and parents in Sonoma County, California.
Notas do Editor
[Presenters will begin with an introduction of who they are]
This presentation is primarily designed for 8th grade and high school science classes. We will be tying all of the material we are presenting today to common core curriculum for 8th grade science, 9th grade Earth Science, and AP Environmental Science
Steffi will talk for a minute about out the importance of effective communication when discussion climate change science and solutions. She will talk about how she uses these techniques in the course of her work as a climate lobbyist.
While Steffi is talking, Lou and Gabe will hand out the MI document “Eat your Veggies”
Once the “Eat Your Veggies” handouts have been given out (1 handout for every 2 people) Gabe will explain the activity:
Get into pairs. Make sure there is one handout per pair. If you need an extra handout, please raise your hand and Lou will bring you one.
In your pair, decide who will be the interviewer and who will be the interviewee
Your goal, interviewer, is to convince the interviewee to eat more vegetables. Begin with the side titled “Eat more Veggies” and use the script to guide your “interview”. The interviewee can respond in whatever way feels right. Go! (3 min)
Next, flip your paper and use the “3 Skills to Enhance Engagement” side to perform another interview. Have the same person give the interview. (4-5 min)
Ok, how was that experience for you? What was different about each of the interviews?
Interviewees, which of these approaches is more likely to get you to eat more vegetables? Why?
How can we apply this type of approach to talking about climate change?
Steffi talked about how important it is to speak to people’s emotional center when talking about climate change solutions. That means finding common ground. One resource for this is www.climatestoriesnc.org. This website contains interviews with real people about their experiences with climate change. You can find an interview that you think will speak to your kids as a way to connect this topic to their own lives.
But focusing too much on the problem can be depressing and can make students feel helpless and unmotivated. In order to get students to understand the scope of the problem, it can be really useful to focus on the solution. One possible way to do this is by hosting an Energy Debate in your classroom.
We will be going over some classroom activities that support student understanding of the problems and the solutions.
The first resources I want to share is a 2-week unit designed by a non-profit, nonpartisan organization called “Facing the Future”. This guide is available through the National Parks Service.
[Click on the guide to take a look]
The second resource is a classroom activity called “The Great Energy Debate”, and it is a multi-day project that culminates in a competitive game that is designed to help students understand the realities of each of 10 different sources of energy used in the US.
This guide includes all the materials and resources you need to run this activity in your classroom, but this activity can be adapted for more advanced classrooms by having students conduct their own research into each of the 10 energy sources, as well as researching opposing energy sources as a way to gain an advantage in the debate.
The last resource I want to share is the World Climate Negotiation Simulator. This is an in-depth activity, ideal for more advanced classrooms, that was designed by Climate Interactive.
[Play the video]
I used this activity with about 30 high school students, and the students universally enjoyed it. However, it does take some setup to achieve, and the activity took us over 3 hours, so it’s important to plan enough time, or to break it up over multiple days.
This is another great multi-discipline activity that incorporates social studies, as well as opportunities for math and language-arts.
These are just three possible approaches, but we have a room full of science teachers. Let’s take just a minute to share some of the other successful approaches you’ve used in your classrooms.
Would anyone like to share an activity they used that was particularly successful?