Arctic Climate Connections Curriculum: A Model for Bringing Authentic Data Into the Classroom

TitleArctic Climate Connections Curriculum: A Model for Bringing Authentic Data Into the Classroom
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2015
AuthorsGold, AU, Kirk, K, Morrison, D, Lynds, S, Sullivan, SBuhr, Grachev, A, Persson, O
JournalJournal of Geoscience Education
Pagination185 - 197
Date Published2015/08//
ISBN Number10899995
Keywords*Original 959, 1AWB, 2RRP, 3WAC, 4AWB, Climatology -- Study & teaching, CURRICULUM planning, Discuss, Discuss AWB, Exclude not empirical RRP, Include AWB, Include WAC, R1 FINAL INCLUDE, Round1 Include, Round2 Discuss AWB, Round2 Include WAC, STUDENT engagement

Science education can build a bridge between research carried out by scientists and relevant learning opportunities for students. The Broader Impact requirements for scientists by funding agencies facilitate this connection. We propose and test a model curriculum development process in which scientists, curriculum developers, and classroom educators work together to scaffold the use of authentic, unprocessed scientific data for high school students. We outline a three-module curriculum structure that facilitates these goals. This curriculum engages students in the collection, description, visualization, and interpretation of data; develops understanding of the nature of science; includes prompts to develop higher-order thinking skills; builds knowledge of regional relevance of climate change in students; uses active learning techniques; and can be easily integrated with the Next Generation Science Standards. The curriculum was reviewed and tested in the classroom. To shed further light on the curriculum development process, we gathered reflection data from the scientists, curriculum developers, and educators. Scientists appreciated the collaborative process in which they contributed their expertise without requiring a large time commitment or strong expertise in science education. The curriculum developers viewed the modular structure as helpful in breaking complicated scientific concepts into teachable steps. Classroom educators appreciated the detailed description and step-by-step instructions to navigate data analysis tools like Excel or Google Earth. Initial classroom implementation of the curriculum by 11 teachers with over 1,100 students showed high levels of interest in the topic and engagement. Further work is needed to assess efficacy of the curriculum through classroom observations and measures of student learning.

Short TitleJournal of Geoscience Education


United States