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Students analyze map visualizations representing the amount of Sun’s energy received on the Earth as indicated by the amount that is reflected back to space, known as “albedo”.


Students are introduced to the Earthrise phenomenon by seeing the Earth as the Apollo 8 astronauts viewed our home planet for the first time from the Moon.  They will analyze a time series of mapped plots of Earth science variables that NASA monitors to better understand the Earth System.


This investigation is part of the NASA: Mission Geography Module "What are the causes and consequences of climate change?" that guides students through explorations in climatic variability and evidence for global climate change. 



In this lesson, students will investigate the drivers of climate change, including adding carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases to the atmosphere, sea level rise, and the effect of decreasing sea ice on temperatures.






The Eyjabakkajökull Glacier is an outlet glacier of the Vatnajökull ice cap in Iceland that has been retreating since a major surge occurred in 1973. Students analyze these maps to identify the scale, rate of change, and volume affected by the glacier retreat.


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