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Simulating Climate Change

Introduction

You have probably heard about global climate change from your science teacher or others or you have read something about this topic in newspapers, magazines, or science books. This lesson will introduce you to the evidence supporting climate change theory.


Exploration

To begin, go to and read More time tells a different story about plants and climate change, Part A, about climate change research in a grassland meadow.

Now answer these questions and be ready to share your answers with your classmates. You can record your answers on the Plants and Climate Change student sheet.

  • Why do you think that the scientists observed the effects of climate change in the California grassland for five years?
  • What do you think it means when the article states that the scientists "manipulated the climate"?
  • In your own words, explain the importance of having controls in an experiment.

Now watch Climate Change Research in California, Part A, made by a college student who participated in the research described in the article, to learn more about the research in California. When you finish the video, answer these questions on your student sheet and be ready to share your answers with your classmates:

  • How is climate predicted to change at the Angelo Costal Range Reserve in Northern California?
  • If climate change disturbs the grassland meadow ecosystem as predicted, what are some of the corresponding changes you might see in the grassland plants and animals?
  • Do you think human activities could be part of what causes global climate change? Why or why not?

Now that you have completed your experiment, read More time tells a different story about plants and climate change, Part B to learn about the results of the research performed in California. Also watch the conclusion to the research in the Climate Change Research in California, Part B video.

Answer these questions on your Plants and Climate Change student sheet and be ready to share your answers with your classmates.

  • In your own words, explain what the scientists observed in the grassland meadow after five years. Did anything change? Make sure you mention both plants and animals!
  • How does your experiment with the plants compare to what the scientists observed in the grassland meadow?

This esheet is a part of the Simulating Climate Change Research in Grasslands lesson.

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Esheet Details

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AAAS Thinkfinity