Today's topic is Urban Heat Islands! This is an engineering topic that is relevant for the students I teach here in the suburbs of Phoenix. At ASU, in Tempe, there is a relatively new college that focuses on sustainability. They have so much available online from lessons to articles. Since heat is the leading story on the news for at least three months out of the year, I find that this topic is something that all of my students have a creative mind to fix! Piggy backing on our recent study of animal adaptations, the 8th graders began to look at how desert dwellers have dealt with the heat throughout history.
This topic lends itself to data collection and graphing in math. There are countless sites that include tables of data from cities that students could graph and compare with other cities. The Very, Very Simple Climate Model Activity is an interactive graphing program online that allows students to explore the role that CO2 plays in temperature change.
Urban Heat Island Unit
SPARK UCAR Feeling the Heat lesson
EPA Links to multiple resources online
ASU Global Institute of Sustainability
National Geographic Education
e! Science News variety of articles
Heat Island Impacts
EPA Heat Island Reduction Activities
Tomorrow's Urban Heat Islands
EPA Where You Live
Green Education Foundation
Study Jams -Heat
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