This American Public Media Educate podcast features PolarTREC alumni, Melissa Lau. She talks about how her experiences in PolarTREC has influenced how she approaches teaching climate change in the classroom. Here's the link to the Education podcast:
Scientists in Siberia are seeing trends of more severe and widespread wildfires. By observing and measuring larch forests, they are trying to understand how the forests are changing. What do these trees need to survive? Are they getting what they need? Students will plant lodgepole pine seeds providing some with all the necessary components for survival and others missing
Scientists in Siberia are seeing trends of more severe and widespread wildfires. Larch seeds are dispersed by wind. Experimentation is currently underway to determine distances larch seeds can disperse from viable, mature larch trees. Students will explore how various types of seeds are dispersed to get what they need to survive.
* Observe and record weather patterns
* Process data by creating graphs/charts
* Compare actual weather data from the Siberian Arctic to local weather patterns, draw conclusions and make future predictions concerning weather patterns.
Why do people need to track weather over time?
You will need a thermometer, tracking calendar, and
Melissa Lau spent a month in the tundra ecosystem gathering data using a device called a Greenseeker. This device measures exactly how green a plant is by calculating its NDVI or Normalized Difference Vegetation Index. In this lesson, students will explore light waves, how they interact with plants, and find out how green is green.
The Importance of Teacher/Researcher Collaboration
Collaboration such as this offers a window into the science rarely seen by teachers and their students. It allows the public/students to experience, in real-time, relevant data collection of the 21st century. Furthermore, experiences such as these demonstrate the universal factors of the scientific process. It does not matter if we are practicing science in
PolarTREC, funded by ARCUS (Arctic Research Consortium of the United States) and the NSF (National Science Foundation), endeavors to connect educators and researchers in real field work experiences. Educators then take that experience back to their learners and community and share their experience in the form of lessons, lectures, and enhanced experiences in the classroom. As