Bark beetles and rainfall at the Arizona Science Center

Bark beetles and rainfall at the Arizona Science Center

Students, by taking part in citizen science projects, can report valuable observations to help scientists better understand the impacts of climate change. To help students themselves see changes over time, and what those changes might have to do with climate... that calls for interpreting data. What has happened to the trees pictured here? Through an inquiry-based curriculum, developed by Dianne McKee and colleagues* at the Arizona Science Center, middle school students are inspired to investigate why trees are dying in the northern part of the state. Prompted by emails from a (fictitious) fellow student on a Student Ranger program, classrooms explore photos,…
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An island ecosystem: Sword ferns at Chabot Space and Science Center

An island ecosystem: Sword ferns at Chabot Space and Science Center

Redwoods line the drive to the Chabot Space and Science Center, located in the hills of Oakland, California. These trees are an icon of Northern California, but this particular Oakland patch is essentially an island ecosystem. And it's vulnerable to a changing climate. Enter an army of "citizen scientist" students and teachers, who visit Chabot (and the two adjacent urban parks) with a mission to monitor... sword ferns. The connection? Both redwoods and sword ferns thrive in a Mediterranean climate, rare but treasured worldwide for their characteristic blue skies and mild temperatures. The "blue skies" also means limited rain. In fact,…
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Citizen paleontology

Citizen paleontology

Fossils in Florida? Bones in a box? Blogger Lisa Gardiner shares stories of how the Denver Museum of Nature and Science and the Paleontological Research Institute in Ithaca, NY, are helping to keep alive the rich tradition of volunteer contributions to paleontological research - both within the museum doors and far beyond. Read more here!
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