Is there a climate change?

1. Think about the weather in PA over the last year. What
stands out in your mind (warm winter, rainy spring, a heavy snowfall, etc.)? Make a judgment, based on what you observed, as to whether this
year was warmer or colder than “normal,” and whether it was drier or wetter than
normal. Consider what factors might influence your response (how much
time spent outside, how much your lifestyle depends on the weather, etc. Record your observations on a sheet of paper. How can your daily activities influence whether you believe climate change is happening?

Make a heading for your section: Global Warming Viewpoint

2. View the following:

What statements or questions can you make about the information on the above page?

3. Go to:
Below the map, choose "Mean temperature" for element, and "Annual" for Period. Everyone in your group should look at 3 different years from different decades. Spread out the years among the members in your group. Record the information on your team page. Including the year, the mean temperature for PA, FL, and CA, and whether it is normal, above normal, or below normal.

Use the same year and states, instead choosing "Precipitation" under element.

Put all information under the heading: Weather through the years

Make a table like this (you will need to make 3, one for each year):

Mean temperature

Above, below, or normal?


Above, below or normal?

Answer the following:
1. Is there a trend that you see? (For ex., is PA always below normal, etc?)
2. Do you notice a trend between temperature and precipitation? Discuss all the connections you can make.

Global change in temperature

Go to:

View a map that shows the changes over the years. Each member of the group should try to make a different map from the others. What do you notice? What is the map telling you?

Snapshots of weather

How do places around the world vary? WORKING ALONE, choose an area in the US or World and look for weather data. Create a podcast that summarizes the climate for that region for a particular month, season, or year. Use the websites we used above or other sites that can provide information.

The report should include:
  1. temperature
  2. precipitation
  3. extreme weather events (
  4. Comparison to long-term averages (above, below, normal, etc.)

You may want to see if this site has any information for your country:

Snapshots of countries

Common Sense Climate Index

Activity #1:
Go to:

Scroll down to the US map and click on a city. Each person in the group should click on a different city or town. Click on one of the station names in the list and view the graph. Compare what you see to others in your group. Take a snapshot of your graph. Remember to rename the picture. Copy the address of the page for the graph to keep as a link. On your team page, place the link, picture, and answer to the following question from everyone in your group (each person does their own). Question:

Describe the curve of the line in your graph. Does it go up, down, stays the same?

Activity #2:
Go to:

View the graphs and answer the following on your individual wiki page (create a heading called Common Sense Climate Index and use heading 1):
How are the graphs for the world and US similar?
How are they different? Suggest reasons for any differences that you see.

Activity #3:
View this last graph:

Answer the following questions and add your answers to your individual wiki page under the Common Sense Climate Index heading:

What do you notice about Alaska climate index compared to all the others seen during this activity?
If people in this area were asked to reflect on their weather this last year, do you think they would say that it was colder, normal, or warmer than they remember in the past?

Climate change survey

Create a survey for residents of our area and other areas. Each team will be asked to create questions after we have brainstormed initial topics. How can we create regions in the world for people to choose?

It may be a great idea to have them choose from the following answers:
No change
Some change
Significant change
Very significant change

Effects of global warming:

As a group you will be given one of the following to research:

Information will be presented to the class on a wiki page. Find the following for each and place information with wources that you find on your individual wiki page (title it: global warming harbingers and footprints):
  1. What does the harbinger or footprint mean (explain it?)
  2. Give examples of each of the harbingers or footprints.
  3. What evidence is there for each of the harbingers or footprints?
  4. What future problems will occur with this harbinger or footprint?
  5. What organisms or areas are affected by the harbinger or footprint?

We will see a pattern for the effects researched on the global maps at
Do you see trends of where these effects are occurring?
Which of the effects are a problem in our area?

Climate change and disease

What gases create global warming?

For your consideration: