• Global Climate Exchange 09
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Participants (please add or edit)

  • Toronto, Canada:
    • Meg O'Mahony (High school science teacher - 10th grade biology)
    • Arif Anwar and Naxin Zhao (PhD students at The University of Toronto)
  • Minneapolis, United States
    • Keisha Varma (Professor of Education, University of Minnesota)
    • ______ (science teacher that Professor Varma is working with)
  • Sweden and Norway:
    • Majken Korsager (PhD student, University of Oslo)
    • Karin Brandin (high school science teacher)
  • China
    • Jianhua Zhao (professor of education, South China Normal University)
    • ______ (6 science teachers that Professor Zhao is working with)


Practice: April 20 - 24 Teachers and researchers explore the technology, and finalize designs - set up "school home pages" in Drupal. Explore "how to" pages for adding an issue to Google MyMap, for editing pages in Drupal, and for discussions in Drupal. Teachers can give a demo or practice session for students, if needed.

Part 1: April 27 - May 1 Students add descriptions of local issues to a collaborative Google Map. (90 minutes of work for each student.)

  • focus on issues in your county or region. Each student can add one issue- possible categories of issues: (1) sources of greenhouse gas, (2) weather patterns, (3) habitat destruction, (4) invasive species

Part 2: May 4 - May 8 Students explore and edit the "Issue pages" from other countries in Drupal. - (90 minutes of work for each student)

  • they will choose an issue from another country in the Google map that is interesting to them, and follow a link from that issue into a Drupal page, where they will add notes about the scientific explanation of that issue, as well as any similarities or relationships to issues in their own country.

Part 3: May 11 - May 15 Students read the notes made by their international peers about their own country's issues, and hold a "local discussion" with peers from their own country. (90 minutes of work for each student)

  • The goal here is for students to reflect about the climate change issues in their own country before discussing global issues with peers from other countries. They will read the pages about their own issues created by students from other countries, and hold an online discussion about the science of global climate change in their own country.

Part 4: May 18 - May 22 Students engage in an international discussion with peers: topics related to the science of global climate change.
(duration: run these discussions for 1 week, with 90 minutes of effort per student)

  • With more than 100 students, it will be good to have at least 4 or 5 discussion topics. Perhaps these could be related to major science themes: (1) sources of greenhouse gas, (2) weather patterns, (3) habitat destruction, (4) invasive species and (5) global interdependence.

This is a four part process, with students interacting with international peers only in the last part. They also collaboratively edit the "Issue Pages" in Drupal with peers from their own continent as well as one other (e.g., the Scandinavian and North American kids will collaboratively work on the Issue Pages from China).

H4. An example:
1. Students in Canada create approximately 20 "climate issues" on the google map. One of these issues is the "Alberta Oil Sands" where they add a brief summary (google map can be annotated) that describes how the production of oil in central Canada produces more carbon emissions than all the cars in California, etc.
2. The researchers and teachers decide which issues to move into Drupal, perhaps 10 out of the 20 from Canada are selected. We then create 10 "Issue Pages" for Canada, including one page for the Alberta Oil Sands. The Chinese and Scandinavian students are asked to review these pages, and collaboratively edit them, adding: (1) links to news stories or relevant Websites, (2) causal connections or similarities to climate issues in their own countries, and (3) a scientific explanation of the issue.
3. North American students will then review the edits made to their Issue pages by the students from the other country, and hold an online discussion with their local peers about what the international peers had to say.
4. All students from all continents then visit a set of online discussions that address topics to be determined by the teachers and researchers - ideally, these topics will focus on the differences between regions, their interdependence, and the common scientific issues and explanations (e.g., habitat destruction, invasive species, changing weather patterns, etc)

Lets think about possible discussion questions!

We will need some good discussion topics for week 3 (discussions within country) and week 4 (discussions between countries).

We have thought about possibly dividing the discussion topics in week four according to science topics: (1) sources of greenhouse gas, (2) weather patterns, (3) habitat destruction, (4) invasive species and (5) global interdependence.

Is that a good approach?

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