Module 4: DATA, TOOLS AND RESOURCES – Climate Data

Data and Climate Change

Climate is a multi-disciplinary educational issue that requires collaboration among educators from different subjects, such as Physics, Chemistry, Geography and Biology.

Climate data is widely available, it is a spatial problem, which requires spatial thinking. allowing data visualisation through maps, graphs and images as well as spatial analysis.

With growing awareness of the global impacts of climate change, climate data should be accessible to and used by teachers and students who want to inform themselves and others about climate impacts.

Students can work with the latest data on climate change, downloaded from NASA and other reputable sources so that they can see the practical relevance of the skills that they’re developing.

Global Temperatures (2500 B.C. to 2040 A.D)

This visualisation of data allows students to understand that global temperatures have changed and continue to do so. Some of the causes have been highlighted

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Activity: Examine the diagram of temperature change since 2500 BC. Consider how the data has been used.
What are the factors that appear to contribute to these temperature changes?

NASA has provided videos using data gathered by their scientists simulating the Earth’s global warming.

Activity: Play the video to show changes from 1880 to 2022.

<–  Climate GeoInquiry 4



In 2022 the Earth’s average surface temperature tied with 2015 as the fifth warmest on record. This continued the planet’s long-term warming trend. It was 0.89 degrees Celsius above the average for NASA’s baseline period (1951-1980).

NASA Earth Observatory is an example of a platform showcasing climate change topics and data visualisations.

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Activity: Explore the work of scientists through the news items of NASA Earth Observatory and examine the topics and tools available. Consider which might be interesting to use with students.
Search for data on the platform to find out how data is being used for analysis and forecasting.

NASA also provides free and open-access long-term data resources of the planet measurements through their Earth Observing System Data and Information System (EOSDIS) initiative. Visit EarthData to find out more and get started with the data.

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Activity: Using EarthData identify some possible activities for your pupils.

The data has been categorised into nine topics: Atmosphere, Biosphere, Cryosphere, Human Dimensions, Land Surface, Ocean, Solid Earth, Sun-Earth Interactions, and Terrestrial Hydrosphere.

Activity: Explore the datasets to find some interesting data and images that you might use with your classes.

There are other platforms and tools that teachers can use. Some interesting ones include:

European Space Agency Climate Change Initiative (CCI)
Human Climate Horizons
Climate Change Knowledge Portal
World Environment Situation Room

When sourcing data for teaching you should also seek to identify and contact local organisations who gather and present data about local climate issues.

Handling/Managing Data.  –>