Representing Climate Data Visually: Inquiry-based Lessons about Climate Science and Climate Change for K-12 Students Using Local, Online Climate Data for Spatial and Graphical Analysis

By Lawrence Rudd.

Published by The International Journal of Climate Change: Impacts and Responses

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Published online: November 6, 2014 $US5.00

The rapid growth of climate data available from online repositories provides the opportunity to create relevant and timely climate science and climate change lessons for K-12 students. Engaging students in interdisciplinary, inquiry-based lessons in which they investigate and interpret relevant data increases student interest and participation in science classes and promotes student visualization of data sets. A set of inquiry-based lessons emphasizing reading and interpreting graphs were created that require students to analyze climate data from weather stations across Nevada. In these investigations students study weather, climate, and vegetation using graphs, imagery, and maps. Inservice secondary-school teachers provided feedback on these lessons. This feedback identified strengths in reading and interpreting weather and climate graphs and weaknesses related to the complicated structure of some of the investigations. Given the impact of climate and climate change on everyday life it is important that both K-12 students and the general public have a working knowledge of climate and how climate data can be accessed. In this model for public use of climate data, the inquiry-based climate science lessons created are available online for teacher use in K-12 instruction with the goal of obtaining feedback on their use and efficacy.

Keywords: Climate Education, Climate Community Awareness, Media

International Journal of Climate Change: Impacts and Responses, Volume 6, Issue 1, pp.11-19. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Published online: November 6, 2014 (Article: Electronic (PDF File; 809.040KB)).

Dr. Lawrence Rudd

Associate Professor of Science Education, School of Education, Nevada State College, Henderson, Nevada, USA


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