This unit, created through the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) Climate Change Research Initiative (CCRI), helps students learn about each component of the energy budget formula and how the contribution of each component changes based on the location and the time of the year.
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The radar measurements made by NASA's Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) observatory are sensitive to whether land surfaces are frozen or thawed. Students analyze two maps of SMAP data to make inferences about changes to the Arctic's Geosphere showing spring thaw.
Teachers, these mini-lessons/student activities are perfect "warm-up" tasks that can be used as a hook, bellringer, exit slip, etc.
Students analyze diagrams showing the effects of clouds on Earth’s Radiation and answer the questions that follow. This mini lesson is designed to help students analyze the interaction between clouds and Earth's incoming and outgoing energy.