Climate Change Lesson 1 : What Is Climate?

Michigan State Climatologist’s Office

The Michigan State Climatologist’s Office is a service of Michigan State University. It has climate records from different intervals for stations in Michigan counties that include climate norms and extremes, average temperatures, heating and cooling days, growing-degree days, precipitation, and snowfall. Retrieved November 28, 2011, from

What’s the Difference Between Weather and Climate?

This NASA webpage highlights the differences between weather and climate. Retrieved November 30, 2011, from

Wisconsin Climate Change Guide

Climate Change: A Wisconsin Activity Guide is a resource to help students develop the knowledge and skills needed to become informed and active participants in society’s climate change discussions. It touches on both the scientific aspects of climate change and social issues. This e-Appendix includes both pdfs of the Guide, links, and references. Retrieved February 22, 2012, from

Climate Literacy: The Essential Principles of Climate Science

As part of a community effort to promote climate literacy, current climate scientists, educators, and representatives of a range of U.S. agencies participated in developing and vetting a list of the most important concepts in climate science. The document they produced - Climate Literacy: The Essential Principles of Climate Science - reflects a broad and current effort to define climate literacy. Retrieved January 17, 2013, from

Climate Variability Lesson

In this activity from the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR), students simulate climate variability and come to understand that long-term climate averages are the result of significant annual climate variability. Students will be able to express the fact that random climate variability makes detecting climate change more difficult. Retrieved February 24, 2012, from

Climate Change and Variability in the Midwest

The climate of the Midwest has changed over time since the beginning of modern records in 1895. This site has maps of the state average annual and seasonal temperature and precipitation trends between 1895 and 2010. Temperature trends are shown in degrees Fahrenheit change per century, and precipitation trends are reported as inches of precipitation change per century. The monthly state average data used to calculate the trends came from the National Climatic Data Center. Retrieved February 24, 2012, from

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