Polar Climates, How Are they Changing?
Focus on the Polar Regions!
The first of two web seminars on the topic of Polar
Climates, How Are They Changing? was held on Tuesday, May 15, 2007, from
6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern time. The presenter was
Dr. Doug Williams, Carolina Trustee Professor of Marine and Geological Sciences
at the University of South Carolina and Scientist-in-Residence at the Edventure
Children’s Museum. Dr. Doug talked about the climate changes taking place in the
Arctic and Antarctic and how these changes are affecting the polar regions.
Forty-three (43) participants were present at the live Web Seminar in addition to
the presenter and the NSTA staff. Participating educators represented the states
of Alaska, California, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana,
Maryland, Minnesota, Missouri, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Ohio, Tennessee,
Texas, Virginia, and Wyoming.
Dr. Doug Williams talked about how the climate system is changing and how the Arctic
and Antarctic regions are responding. He also talked about the International Polar
Year and its related teacher opportunities. In one of the last slides of his presentation
he summarized the changes taking place in the Arctic regions due to the polar climate
changes. Some of those changes are: (1) Snow cover declining; (2) Permafrost melting;
(3) Freshwater input increasing and; (4) Sea ice decreasing and thinning. All participants
received a copy of NSTA's SciGuide titled Living in the Weather, grades 5-8.
Here are some comments provided by the participants at the end of the Web Seminar:
- "This area will help my students have a better understanding on how global warming
has been taking place for a long time and we are feeling the effects today."
- "The information that Dr. Doug presented was very straight-forward and real.
The visuals presented will be very useful in the classroom, to give students a sense
of what is happening climatologically."
- "I thought it was excellent! I work with gifted students and have a group that
is quite concerned with the future. I want them to be educated about the truth and
then feel empowered."
Thanks to the participants and the presenter for the learning opportunity, the interactions,
and a job well done!
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Underwritten in part by NSF, NASA, and NOAA.