Mini Lesson

Data Jigsaw: Exploring Sea Level Rise with Others

Mini Lesson

Step 1: Students work in groups of four. Each member within the group will become an expert on one of the resources below. (All resources are found in the Google Slide provided.) Students spend five minutes observing and analyzing the data with the expectation that they need to be able to explain the data's pattern and trends to their groups.

  • Resource 1: Sea Surface Height 1993-2016

    • For over 20 years, satellite altimeters have measured the sea surface height of our ever-changing oceans.  Credit - NASA 

sea surface height


  • Resource 2: Global Mean Sea Level 

Global Mean Sea Level

  • Resource 3: Monthly Deviation in Sea Ice Extent from 1979-2017

    • These line graphs plot monthly deviations and overall trends in polar sea ice from 1979 to 2017 as measured by satellites. The top line shows the Arctic; the middle shows Antarctica; and the third shows the global, combined total. The graphs depict how much the sea ice concentration moved above or below the long-term average. (They do not plot total sea ice concentration.) Credit: Joshua Stevens/NASA Earth Observatory
       Sea Ice Extent


  • Resource 4:  Fourteen lowest minimum Arctic sea ice extents (satellite record, 1979 to present 

Lowest Minimum Arctic Sea Ice

Step 2:  After the five minutes is up, students fill out their square on the chart (on the PDF or Google Slide). Students with the same resource come together to discuss what they learned. Students address following questions in the space for each resource.Sea Level Rise - Collaborative Data Quads

  • Summarize your resource in 30 seconds.
  • What do you still need clarification on from within your resource?
  • What was the most important part of the resource?
  • What was the significance of the information you learned?

Step 3: Now the original group of four from Step 1 return together. Each member has two minutes to summarize what their resource group has discussed. Students need to fill in the other three parts as group members shares. They can use the questions above as a guide for what they should share out.

Step 4: After each member had a chance to share their summary, together the groups need to answer:

  • What do the data tell you?
  • What was similar within resources? What was different?
  • What do you want to research more about this topic?

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