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This lesson introduces the Earth system science spheres through model making and discussion. Students will work within an Earth system science notebook to chronicle their work and learning.

Students analyze historic plant growth data (i.e., peak bloom dates) of Washington, D.C.’s famous cherry blossom trees, as well as atmospheric near surface temperatures as evidence for explaining the phenomena of earlier peak blooms in our nation’s capital.

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 Syste

Students move through a series of short activities to explore and evaluate global solar radiation data from NASA satellites.  In this process, students make qualitative and quantitative observations about seasonal variations in net energy input to the Earth system.

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