This curriculum introduces students to climate change and its impact in their own regions. Students then explore ways that nature can be harnessed to create resilient communities.

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This six-part curriculum, with an introductory video, immerses students into exploring causes and effects of global climate change and how climate change affects their own regions. The lessons cover from nine to thirteen 45-minute class periods. There are many links to other resources and a detailed teachers’ guide to using them with their students. Parts 4 and 5 provide information about how some cities are trying to become more resilient to climate change, including some nature-based solutions. Suggestion: Have students look for other natural models that could lead to solutions for reducing CO2 emissions, building system resilience, and adapting to changing conditions.

This curriculum addresses these Next Generation Science Standards: ESS2.D: Weather and Climate; ESS3.C: Human Impacts on Earth Systems; ESS3.D: Global Climate Change; LS2.C: Ecosystem Dynamics, Functioning, and Resilience; LS4.D: Biodiversity and Humans; and ETS1.B: Developing Possible Solutions.

This curriculum addresses these Common Core State Standards:CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RST.9-10.1; CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RST.9-10.3; CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RST.9-10.7; CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RST.9-10.8; CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RST.9-10.9; CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RST.11-12.1; CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RST.11-12.3; CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RST.11-12.7; CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RST.11-12.8; CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RST.11-12.9

The curriculum and its resources are mostly focused on the United States, but a number of resources provide global maps and data so with some research the curriculum could be adapted to other regions of the world.

The Nature Conservancy’s Nature Works Everywhere website is filled with dozens of additional resources including information about different ecosystems, connecting to nature, the relationship of native peoples’ to the land and nature, interviews with scientists, and project-based activities.

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Objectives

  • Explore common climate change questions and discover their answers.

  • Create presentations using real data and other artifacts to disseminate information about common climate change questions.

  • Describe the difference between climate and weather using real data.

  • Explore resources on climate and describe how ecosystem services will be impacted by climate change.

  • Define the terms “Anthropocene” and “anthropogenic” and describe how they relate to climate change.

  • Explore NASA and NOAA data to determine how humans are shaping the Earth and impacting climate.

  • Identify the trends in their home state’s climate.

  • Research their home state’s climate preparedness and reflect.

  • Explore the concepts of sustainability, climate resilience, and nature-based solutions to climate change.

  • Identify ways to get involved either through personal change and/or community action.

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